EU funding for growth of Finnish companies

Investments in companies - 16.8.2018

A new financing model of the EIB and Tesi will invest EUR 100 million to growth-oriented SMEs and innovative mid-cap companies over the next eight years.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the investment company Tesi (Finnish Industry Investment) have agreed on a financing programme to channel funding in support of the growth of Finnish companies. The operation is guaranteed under the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), central pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe of the Juncker Commission. The financing to be managed by Tesi targets a total of EUR 100 million to promising companies, equally split between the EIB and Tesi. Furthermore, the funding is structured to be complemented by private sector co-investments with another EUR 100 m, totalling EUR 200 m of new investments to the benefit of SMEs and mid-caps.

This financial mechanism supplements EIB funding in the form of equity type loans and equity financing by Tesi. The financing of EUR 15–30 million per company is targeted to growth-oriented SMEs and innovative mid-cap companies. In addition, each financing round must involve at least the same amount in private capital. This may be used e.g. to boost growth, internationalisation and product development.

“Finland has succeeded very well in making use of the financial instruments offered by the EU, which is also our Government’s objective. This applies, in particular, to funding from EFSI. The financing programme of Tesi and EIB published today is the first of its kind adopted in the Nordics. It will add to the available sources of risk finance and remove financial bottlenecks faced by growth companies. The programme will significantly boost the growth of innovative growth companies and mid-cap companies that are vital for our national economy and employment,” says Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä.

“The new financial model enables larger financing rounds than before and diversifies the financing structures of growth-oriented companies. It boosts the growth and internationalisation of companies and improves their ability to make significant investments. We are very happy to partner with EIB and channel equity financing of the EFSI to Finnish companies,” says CEO of Tesi Jan Sasse.

Competitiveness to European companies

Traditionally, the EIB has to large extent offered financing to companies in the form of loans and guarantees, which means that for EIB this is a rather new type of financing. Tesi is EIB’s first partner in the Nordics that channels EFSI-guaranteed financing to companies as direct capital investments.

”I think this operation is one to be proud of.” added EIB vice-president Alexander Stubb. “The platform is designed to fill-in market gaps in the Finnish equity investment landscape, which hinders companies’ development and internationalisation. Two of the priorities under the investment schemes supported by the EU are to support SMEs and to work together with National Promotional Institutions, so I believe we hit the bull's-eye here.”

The European Fund for Strategic Investment EFSI is part of the Investment Plan for Europe, the Juncker plan. The aim is to secure the access to funding, investments and economic growth for European SMEs.

Jyrki Katainen, Commission Vice-President responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said: "The Investment Plan's European Fund for Strategic Investments was designed to facilitate small and medium-sized enterprises gain access to finance they need to expand, innovate and create jobs. So far, around 700,000 small businesses across Europe are expected to benefit. I am delighted that, with today's transaction, the Investment Plan will allow Finnish firms to benefit from EUR 100 million in financing opportunities.”

Press contacts:
EIB: Tim Smit, +352 691 286423, t.smit@eib.org – Twitter #EIB60 and Instagram
Tesi: Jan Sasse, CEO, +358 40 861 9151, jan.sasse@tesi.fi
European Commission: Siobhan Millbright, +32 22957361, Siobhan.millbright@ec.europa.eu - Twitter #investEU
MEE: Jukka Ihanus, +358 50 463 9929 and Jyrki Orpana, +358 50 409 4457, Twitter @Tem_uutiset

 

Background information:

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. In 2017, the Bank made available in excess of EUR 1.3 billion in loans for Finnish projects.

About The Investment Plan for Europe
The Investment Plan for Europe focuses on strengthening European investments to create jobs and growth. It does so by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment, and providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects. The European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) is the central pillar of the Juncker Plan. It provides a first loss guarantee, allowing the EIB to invest in more, often riskier, projects. So far, the projects and agreements approved for financing under the EFSI are expected to mobilise EUR 335 billion in investments and support around 700 000 SMEs across all 28 Member States. Find the latest EFSI figures by sector and by country here, or see the FAQs.

SME Small- and medium-sized enterprise
Enterprise which has fewer than 250 employees and an annual turnover not exceeding EUR 50 million or an annual balance-sheet total not exceeding EUR 43 million.

Mid-cap
Company which has fewer than 3,000 employees and an annual turnover not exceeding EUR 300 million.