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EBRD finances first software engineering project in Western Balkans

By EBRD  Press Office

  • EBRD and ENEF provide €12 million loan to support expansion of HTEC in Serbia and south-eastern Europe
  • Acquisition of Serbian IT company Execom to create strong regional R&D hub
  • Development of local engineering talent

HTEC, the leading international software developer and technology research and development (R&D) services provider, is boosting its business by entering into a partnership agreement with the EBRD through a €12 million loan.

The loan is 50 per cent co-financed by the Enterprise Expansion Fund (ENEF), an entity that finances small and medium-sized enterprises with high growth potential to support the development and expansion of their businesses.

HTEC is a Serbian company with headquarters in San Francisco, United States, and an expanding network of R&D offices in south-eastern Europe. HTEC provides services to a number of international clients ranging from blue chips to high tech start-ups in sectors such as retail, healthcare, transportation, logistics, digital media, telecoms and financial and payment services, where state-of-the-art IT solutions play an essential role, especially in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

The loan will support HTEC’s growth and development programme, the first phase of which envisages the acquisition of the Serbian IT company Execom. The combined company will have a workforce of 600 engineers working on product development, cloud platforms, web and mobile technologies, artificial intelligence as well as hardware engineering. It will be able to deliver fully integrated solutions to existing and new customers in the US and Europe.

The development of HTEC’s strong regional R&D hub in the Western Balkans will support local engineering talent and offer world class services that are much needed with the sharp rise in home working patterns following the coronavirus pandemic.

This is the first cooperation between HTEC and the EBRD, which will enable a long-term partnership and the achievement of major development and growth targets. For the EBRD this is an opportunity to work with a leading technology consulting and engineering R&D company, with an active mergers and acquisitions pipeline in the technology development services sector. This is also an opportunity for the Bank to participate in the development of Serbia’s IT industry – a major contributor to the country’s GDP.

The ENEF is a €48.5 million fund in which the EBRD is an investor together with the European Investment Fund (EIF), the European Union, the Italian Republic, the German Development Bank (DEG), and the Development Bank of Austria (OeEB). The ENEF is part of the Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility, established jointly by the EBRD, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the EU.

The EBRD expects the entirety of its investments of up to €21 billion in 2020-21 to be dedicated to the response to and the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

The EBRD is a leading institutional investor in Serbia. The Bank has invested more than €6 billion across 267 projects in the country to date. The EBRD is focusing on support for private-sector development, improvement of public utility services and on the overall transition towards a green economy.

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