Tuesday, September 1, 2015

COSME and Horizon 2020 – Learn which are the already adopted Financial Instruments for SMEs

There are several programmes and measures at EU level to facilitate SMEs’ access to finance. Here is a snapshot of the already adopted programmes. 
The COSME programme is expected to provide up to EUR 25 billion of financing in loans or equity investments over 2014-2020.
The InnovFin financial instruments are part of HORIZON2020, which provide funding that spans all across the innovation cycle, from lab to market.
The Loan Guarantee Facility, under COSME, provides guarantees to financial intermediaries for SME loans up to EUR 150,000. This guarantee facility will target the more vulnerable categories of small businesses that are currently underserved by the market.
Above the EUR 150,000 threshold, the InnovFin SME Guarantee, (Horizon 2020 financial instruments), facilitates access of innovative SMEs and small mid-caps to debt financing via guarantees.

The Equity Facility for Growth, under COSME, supports private investments into risk capital funds that invest into European SMEs at the growth and expansion stage.
The Early Stage Equity Facility, branded as InnovFin SME Venture Capital, supports the provision of equity and quasi equity finance to SMEs in their early stages. 

To allow for a broad investment spectrum, investments into multi-stage funds can be financed through a combination of resources from COSME and InnovFin.

Horizon 2020 promotes SME participation with almost €9bn of its budget to support SME innovation. €3bn of this amount is reserved for a new, dedicated SME instrument that supports innovative business ideas with the potential to shape new markets through grants ranging from €50,000 to €2,5 million.

The EU portal on access to finance (www.access2finance.eu) provides complete and updated information on financing available for SMEs through the various programmes provided by the EU and the EIB group.

Improving the access to finance is not merely a supply side matter. The increase in the supply of early stage capital will be limited if the businesses that come forward are not investment ready.

The InvestHorizon programme http://www.investhorizon.eu will boost the investment readiness of European SMEs and SME Instrument beneficiaries, in particular improving their capacity to successfully realise one of the phases of the SME Instrument.