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Renewed partnership between EIF and Millennium bcp to support Portuguese small and medium enterprises with an additional €1.650 billion

    Date: 21 October 2021
  • The EIF and BCP have signed two new agreements to mobilise €1.650 billion for the real economy.
  • These agreements build on the ones signed in April this year, bringing the total new financing for Portuguese small and medium businesses from the EIF and Millennium bcp to c. €2.850 billion.
  • The agreements are backed by the European Guarantee Fund, part of the European Union’s €540 billion package to address the economic impact of COVID-19.

The European Investment Fund (EIF) and Millennium bcp have signed two new agreements to provide additional liquidity to Portuguese small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) affected by the economic crisis brought on by the outbreak of COVID-19. Specifically, the EIF will provide Millennium bcp with a guarantee of up to €1.155 billion, with the objective of channelling €1.650 billion into the real economy. These agreements are backed by the European Guarantee Fund (EGF), part of the European Union's €540 billion package to address the economic impact of COVID-19.

These agreements build on the success of the guarantees signed back in April, where both institutions committed to mobilise about €1.2 billion to support Portuguese small and medium-sized enterprises.  This means that thanks to the renewed partnership between the EIF and Millennium bcp, about €2.850 billion in new financing will be made available to Portuguese companies affected by the economic crisis caused by the pandemic. 

Thanks to the EIF and the European Guarantee Fund, BCP will provide debt financing to small and medium businesses on more favourable terms, ensuring that Portuguese companies have sufficient financing available to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis and are able to continue their growth and development in the medium to long term. The EIF will assume up to 70% of the risk of these BCP loans.

EIF Chief Executive Alain Godard said: “The European Investment Fund is delighted to renew the partnership with Millennium bcp to support Portuguese small and medium-sized companies. Thanks to the European Guarantee Fund, we will be able to provide the much-needed financing for Portuguese businesses, allowing them to weather the COVID-19 storm and grow in the medium to long term.”

EIB Vice-President Ricardo Mourinho Felix said: “Small and medium-sized companies employ more than 70% of Portugal’s workforce. The partnership between the EIF and Millennium bcp under the European Guarantee Fund will make c. €2.850 billion in new financing available to Portuguese firms, providing the necessary liquidity to scale up and invest in a sustainable future.”

Miguel Maya, CEO of Millennium bcp “This agreement reaffirms Millennium bcp's position as a leading bank for the Portuguese business community, giving it a prominent role in supporting the recovery of the economy and the modernization of companies. During the most critical period of the pandemic (2020 and 2021), Millennium bcp financed more than 40,000 companies with a total of around 6 billion euros. With the agreement now established, Millennium strengthens its capacities to support growth, contributing to the increased competitiveness of companies in Portugal and giving them the capacity to invest and benefit from the opportunities of the transition to a more resilient, green and digital economy.”

Background information:

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 enterprises (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. The EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments that specifically target this market segment. In this role, the EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment.

The European Guarantee Fund (EGF) was set up by the EIB Group with contributions from Portugal and other EU Member States to shield companies suffering from the COVID-19 crisis. Using nearly €25 billion in guarantees, the EGF allows the EIB and the EIF to quickly make loans, guarantees, asset-backed securities, equity and other financial instruments available to mostly small and medium-sized enterprises. The EGF is part of the European Union’s recovery package aiming to provide a total of €540 billion to boost those parts of the EU economy that have been hit the worst.

Millennium bcp is the leading Portuguese bank for corporates and SMEs with an 18.6% credit market share and almost €20 billion in corporate credit, supporting more than 220 000 companies. It is the market leader for the most significant customer segments, with a 26% market share in Factoring and Confirming, 20% in Leasing, 21% in Exporters, 40% in European Funds and 19% in the National Guarantee System. Millennium bcp is also the top ranked bank for the best SMEs in Portugal, and was named Bank #1 in the “PME Líder” and “PME Excelência” government awards between 2018 and 2020, with a 28% market share.

Press Contacts


Lorenzo Squintani, tel.: +352 691 285 772, l.squintani@eib.org

Website: www.eif.org – Press office: +352 4379 21000 – press@eib.org

Follow us on Twitter @eif_eu 

Millennium bcp

Erik T. Burns, tel.:+351 917 265 020, erik.burns@millenniumbcp.pt

Website: www.millenniumbcp.pt


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