Seeking to expand its support for local SMEs in Bulgaria, the EBRD has signed a €5.5 million loan with Billboard AD, a leading local provider of printing and outdoor advertising solutions.
The EBRD loan will help the company improve its capital structure by increasing the share of long-term debt and matching the debt profile to current and future cash flows. A portion of this new funding will help complete Billboard’s investments aimed to further broaden the company’s product portfolio in its drive to meet increasing local and international demand.
Billboard has grown over the last decade into one of the leading printing and advertising services providers in Bulgaria. It is a publicly-listed company and together with its regional subsidiaries employs 440 staff.
The EBRD loan to Billboard is being arranged under the EBRD–Italy Local Enterprise Facility, an investment instrument providing long-term financing to small and medium-sized enterprises whose needs are not sufficiently addressed by existing financing facilities. LEF was introduced in Bulgaria from January 2011, following several successful years in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, FYR Macedonia, Montenegro, Turkey and Serbia.
“The LEF investment in Billboard demonstrates the Bank’s ability to support innovative companies meet their investment objectives despite a difficult business climate. We look forward to working with Billboard, and expect that the Company will be able to respond effectively to its client needs as the economy hopefully turns in a more positive direction.” said Daniel Berg, EBRD Director, Bulgaria.
“We are excited about the opportunity to work with EBRD. As the printing and advertising business is still developing in Bulgaria we expect this project to enable us to expand the business in the local and foreign markets.” said Stefan Genchev, CEO of Billboard AD.
Since the beginning of its operations in Bulgaria, the EBRD has committed over €2.5 billion in 205 projects in various sectors of the economy, mobilising additional investment in excess of €5.7 billion.