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The EIF backs Opyn’s Magellano fund focusing Italian SMEs

    Date: 13 December 2021
  • Magellano, a new investment fund managed by ART SGR, is dedicated to institutional investors and provides loans to small and medium-sized Italian businesses.
  • The EIF participates in the Fund with EUR 30m to facilitate fundraising among private investors.
  • The EIF contribution is backed by the “Private Credit Tailored for SMEs” programme of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI).

Milan, 13 December 2021 The European Investment Fund (EIF) will support the new Magellano fund managed by ART SGR. With support from the Private Credit Tailored for the SMEs Programme of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), part of the European Union's Investment Plan for Europe, the EIF will invest EUR 30 million in the fund.

Magellano is a new closed-end alternative investment fund dedicated to institutional investors. Its first closing reached EUR 75 million, with an overall target of EUR 200 million. The Fund is managed by ART SGR, the asset manager company of Opyn, an Italian fintech group for corporate lending.

The Magellano fund proves that fintech can be a valid alternative financing instrument for businesses, particularly in a context of the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on the liquidity of small and medium-sized businesses. The Bank of Italy calculated that between the end of 2011 and March 2019 the stock of bank loans to companies had decreased by around 250 billion euros, by more than 25%.

A direct lending fund such as Magellano is an alternative channel for injecting liquidity into the entrepreneurial world, while direct lending to small and medium-sized businesses also represents an attractive asset class for professional investors.

We are delighted to back the Magellano fund managed by ART SGR. This represents a great opportunity to facilitate access to finance for small and medium-sized Italian businesses, which have been highly impacted by the economic crisis generated by the pandemic. The EIF's commitment has been instrumental in diversifying and enlarging the Fund's investor base, crowding-in new investors and triggering additional third-party resources,” said EIF Chief Executive Alain Godard.

Commissioner for Economy, Paolo Gentiloni, said: “I welcome this financial agreement between the EIF and ART SGR, which is backed by the Investment Plan for Europe’s SME programme. The new Magellano fund will provide an alternative source of financing for small and medium-sized Italian businesses, affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This is great news for the Italian entrepreneurial world, which will benefit from this agreement to boost its activities and its recovery from the crisis.”

The purpose of this fund is income generation andthe enhancement of the invested capital in a medium-long term perspective, which is the only one consistent with the needs of SMEs – stated Cesare Santacroce, General Manager of ART SGR and Credit Risk Manager of Opyn. – This goes to the benefit of investors and most of all Italian companies, especially the micro and small ones despite their hunger for liquidity in the post-Covid era. This is a pioneering operation because it is led by a fintech company, and the fact that it is supported by the EIF gives us credit in the European financial arena. Moreover, that an institution supports fintech and considers it a channel through which the real economy can be financed effectively is an important signal.

Opyn has been assisted by Mediobanca – Banca di Credito Finanziario S.p.A., through its Markets Division, for the fund placement and by the law firm Alpeggiani for the legal and regulatory aspects. CACEIS Bank has been appointed as custodian and fund administrator.

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 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.

The European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) is the main pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe. It provides first loss guarantees enabling the EIB Group to invest in riskier projects. The projects and agreements approved for financing under EFSI have so far mobilised €546.5 billion in investment, benefitting over 1.4 million SMEs. In Italy, the total financing under EFSI so far amounts to €13.3 billion and is set to trigger €77 billion in additional investments.

Opyn, former BorsadelCredito.it, is the first platform that gives companies quick access to credit and simplifies the work of banks. Born in 2012 as a broker of online loans, today – thanks to its paperless and highly innovative technology– Opyn offers, on the one hand, financing in 24 hours and cash in a few days to Italian SMEs, and, on the other hand, its software as a service to financial and corporate realities that want to support their clients in an immediate and smart way through artificial intelligence and machine learning. Opyn has lent over 307 million euros; in the first 6 months of 2021 it has supported 563 companies with 154 million euros in loans, becoming the SMEs lending leader in Italy. 

Mediobanca is a diversified listed banking group. Market leader in Italy in investment banking, with a strong track record in Lending, Advisory and Capital Markets businesses, and with a significant footprint in Southern Europe, the Group today is also a top Italian players in Consumer Banking and a quality operator in Wealth Management, serving Affluent & Premier and Private & HNWI clients. An established reputation based on professionalism and discretion, coupled with capital solidity and quality, make Mediobanca the ideal partner of choice for businesses looking to grow in Italy and in Europe.

Press contacts:

Opyn Press Office


Irene Longhin - +39 329 7816778

Elisa Giuliana - +39 338 6027361

Sabrina Barozzi - +39 333 6158644


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

European Commission:

Flora Matthaes, tel.: + 32 2 298 39 51, flora.matthaes@ec.europa.eu

Website: www.ec.europa.eu/invest-eu

Follow us on Twitter @EU_Commission #investEU

Note: Following the recent withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, we are updating the relevant EIF.org pages.


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