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Investment Plan for Europe supports EUR 285 million in financing for Polish SMEs

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    Date: 12 July 2018

The European Investment Fund (EIF) and Bank Polska Kasa Opieki (Bank Pekao S.A.), have signed a COSME agreement that will allow the Bank to provide PLN 1.2 billion (ca. EUR 285 million) in loans to small and medium-sized Polish businesses.

The agreement will allow Bank Pekao S.A. to provide SMEs with investment and operational loans with lower down-payment requirements and to support SMEs and start-ups which have limited access to lending. Around 1,500 Polish SMEs are expected to benefit from these loans.

This agreement is guaranteed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe, the Juncker Plan.

EU Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, Elżbieta Bieńkowska, said: "Today's announcement by the European Investment Fund and Bank Pekao is very good news for start-ups and other small businesses in Poland wishing to scale up. Thanks to EU support, around 1,500 Polish SMEs who have struggled to access finance until now will have a new opportunity. This is yet another good example of the Juncker Plan at work."

EIF Deputy Chief Executive, Roger Havenith said: "EIF support via the Investment Plan for Europe continues to deliver a wide range of financing options for Polish SMEs and we are pleased to be announcing this new agreement with Bank Pekao today. The guarantee will help Bank Pekao to provide enhanced access to finance to currently essentially excluded risky SMEs and start-ups – in line with our strategy to support entrepreneurship, jobs and growth”.

The current agreement is the largest direct guarantee EIF transaction with a Polish intermediary within the EU Programmes. “I would like to congratulate EIF and Bank Pekao SA for signing of the agreement for benefit of Polish entrepreneurs. Polish government supports implementation of the COSME Programme, which actions are in line with our Strategy for Responsible Development” – commented Jadwiga Emilewicz, Minister of Entrepreneurship and Technology.

Tomasz Styczyński, Vice President of the Management Board supervising the SME Banking Division of Bank Pekao S.A., said: Bank Pekao S.A. has been a reliable and highly valued partner of the European Union institutions for many years. The current COSME contract is the fifth contract concluded by the bank with the European Investment Fund, under the financial instruments of EU programs for 2007-2013 and 2014-2020. The total value of these contracts is nearly PLN 3.8 billion. As part of the current, largest portfolio, we will offer preferential financing for 1500 of Polish micro, small and medium entrepreneurs".

“We are proud that we could support Bank Pekao S.A. in the application process for the COSME guarantee. We will also assist in the implementation of the agreement, by promoting the offer among Polish entrepreneurs” – declared Arkadiusz Lewicki, Director of the National Contact Point for Financial Instruments of the EU Programmes.

About EIF

The European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank group. Its central mission is to support Europe's micro, small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment. More information on EIF's work under the EFSI is available here.

About Bank Pekao S.A.

Bank Pekao S.A. was founded on March 17th, 1929 and nowadays is one of the largest financial institutions in Central and Eastern Europe. It is a Polish, international bank, the largest corporate bank and the leader of the private banking market in Poland. Pekao S.A. serves over 5 million customers, every second Polish company becomes the bank's client. Bank Pekao S.A. is one of the safest banks at the Pan-European level. Within the Pekao's capital group there are several companies which are national leaders in the area of brokerage, leasing, factoring and financial investments. With over 15 000 employees Pekao is one of the largest Polish employers. The bank is the leader of SME financing, especially with the use of EIF guarantees in Poland. In 2017 Pekao won the Ranking of the 10th anniversary of the EU Financial Instruments Market in Poland.

The history of Bank Pekao S.A. is the history of Polish banking system: it was the first bank in Poland that launched an ATM, issued the first credit card, opened a brokerage house, applied in practice biometrics in banking industry.       

Since 1998 Pekao has been listed on Warsaw Stock Exchange in WIG20 index. It is one of the five largest companies on the Polish stock exchange. 

Bank Pekao S.A. is a part of the PZU Group - the largest financial group in Central and Eastern Europe.

About the National Contact Point for Financial Instruments of the EU Programmes

NCP facilitates access to preferential financing, generated through EU support, for Polish entrepreneurs and financial institutions. The NCP engages in information and promotional actions as well as consultancy. The NCP supports implementation of all EU programmes that involve financial instruments for entrepreneurs, including instruments supported by the Investment Plan. NCP’s services are provided throughout the country and are free of charge. The NCP is located within the Polish Bank Association, under a special partnership agreement. It operates on the basis of a Resolution of the Polish government and is supervised by the Minister relevant for Economy. More about the NCP’s support: www.InstrumentyFinansoweUE.gov.pl

About COSME

COSME is the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) running from 2014 to 2020 with a total budget of EUR 2.3 billion. At least 60% of the programme will be devoted to easing access to finance for SMEs in Europe, with two financial instruments. The COSME Loan Guarantee Facility supports guarantees and counter-guarantees to financial institutions to help them provide more loans and lease finance to SMEs. This facility also includes securitisation of SME debt finance portfolios. The COSME programme also invests through the COSME Equity Facility for Growth in equity funds that provide risk capital to SMEs mainly in the expansion and growth stages. The COSME programme builds on the success of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) (2007-2013) which helped to mobilise more than EUR 21 billion of loans and EUR 3 billion of venture capital to almost 400,000 SMEs in Europe.

Businesses can contact selected financial institutions in their country to access EU financing: http://www.access2finance.eu/

About the Investment Plan for Europe

The Investment Plan for Europe, the Juncker Plan, is one of the EU´s top priorities to boost investments and to create jobs and growth by removing obstacles to investment, providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects, and making smarter use of existing and new financial resources. With guarantees from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the EIB and EIF are able to take on a higher share of project risk, encouraging private investors to participate in the projects. The European Parliament and Member States agreed in December 2017 to extend EFSI's duration and increase its financial capacity. As of June 2018, the Juncker Plan is set to trigger more than EUR 294 billion in investment across the EU.

Press contacts:

EIF:
David Yormesor

Tel.: +352 42 66 88 346
E-mail: d.yormesor@eif.org

Bank Pekao S.A.:
Tel.: +48 22 524 5148
E-mail: media@pekao.com.pl

European Commission:
Siobhan Millbright
Tel.: + 32 229 57361
E-mail: siobhan.millbright@ec.europa.eu


 
 

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