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Creative Europe - A new financial instrument for SMEs

The Creative Europe Programme (2014-2020) of the European Commission has earmarked EUR 121 million to a financial mechanism acting as insurance to financial intermediaries. This programme offers financing to CCS initiatives to improve SMEs' access to financial products and stimulate the offer of financial intermediaries (e.g. banks). The expected leverage effect will provide over EUR 600 million in loans and other financial products. The scheme is managed by the European Investment Fund (part of the European Invesment Bank), on behalf of the European Commission.

Access to finance is more challenging for Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) in the cultural and creative sector (CCS) as compared with conventional SMEs. Some of the reasons could be, the intangible nature of their assets and collaterals, the limited size of the market, and the lack of training (on the part of financial intermediaries) to address the sector's specificities. It was estimated that the financing gap in the CCS for the 2014-2020 period could amount to EUR 1.1 to EUR 1.9 billion per year.  Between 280,000 and 476,000 SMEs in the CCS may not obtain financial intermediary loans due to a lack of collateral only.

The facility will start rolling out in summer 2016.

For more information see https://ec.europa.eu/digital-single-market/en/financial-guarantee-facility-culture-creative

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