- €5 million loan to dynamic car rental services provider
- Company aims to expand car fleet to meet growing demand
- Autonom joins EBRD programme for firms with high-growth potential
Reinforcing its commitment to Romania’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the EBRD is providing a €5 million loan to Autonom Services S.A., the country’s largest locally owned provider of short-term mobility services.
The loan agreement was signed in Bucharest today by EBRD President, Suma Chakrabarti, and co-founder of the company, Marius Stefan.
Autonom, founded in 2006 by two brothers, Marius and Dan Stefan, now has a network of 45 car rental centres across Romania, subsidiaries in Hungary and Serbia and a total of 8,000 vehicles. It also provides car-fleet management services and full-service leasing.
The EBRD’s loan will enable the company to expand its car fleet in order to meet growing demand from Romanian firms, including SMEs.
Previously, the company has received support under the EBRD’s Advice for Small Businesses programme in Romania funded by the Austrian government. With the help of an international adviser, Autonom was able to access new sources of finance and grow its business.
President Chakrabarti also welcomed Autonom to the EBRD’s Blue Ribbon programme. The programme combines business advice and finance for companies that stand out for their market leadership and high-growth potential. It currently includes 30 companies in 20 countries where the Bank invests.
Autonom is the first Romanian company to join the programme, thanks to the firm’s solid business strategy, innovation and strong management.
The EBRD is among the top institutional investors in Romania. To date, the Bank has invested close to €8 billion in the country in more than 400 projects. In 2017 alone, it invested €550 million in Romania.
Of this financing, over €500 million was provided to the private sector, the highest level seen in the past seven years.