EBRD signs €75 million risk-sharing facility with UniCredit Bulbank

By Olga Rosca

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  • EBRD extends risk-sharing facility of up to €75 million to UniCredit Bulbank
  • Will help support the growth and strengthen the competiveness of Bulgarian companies
  • EBRD to guarantee up to 65 per cent of each individual sub-loan

Bulgarian businesses will benefit from better access to finance under a risk-sharing framework of up to €75 million provided by the EBRD to UniCredit Bulbank (UCB), the country’s largest bank.

The EBRD will guarantee up to 65 per cent of each individual sub-loan provided by UniCredit Bulbank to eligible clients. This is the second risk sharing facility launched by EBRD in Bulgaria, a further step towards strengthening the partnership with UCB as well as fostering growth and competiveness of companies in the country.

The Risk Sharing Framework (RSF) is one of the three core financing frameworks of the EBRD’s Small Business Initiative, a programme dedicated to supporting and developing local private companies in the economies where it invests. RSF is designed to allow the EBRD to share partner banks’ exposures to local enterprises through either funded or unfunded risk participation. Funded risk participation involves upfront lending, while this facility is provided on an unfunded basis which makes it more similar to a guarantee.

UCB has been a long-standing and strong EBRD partner in a number of EBRD's programmes supporting SMEs and investments in sustainable energy and acting as an active co-financing bank since 2001. The bank has distinguished itself as a leading provider of corporate and investment banking services in Bulgaria, and brings with it the considerable expertise of its investment-grade parent group, UniCredit Group.

The RSF cooperation will support the bank’s strategy for continued sustainable growth over the coming years.

Bolstering the competitiveness of Bulgarian enterprises and supporting financial sector intermediation through risk sharing products are key priorities for the EBRD in the country. As one of the largest institutional investors in Bulgaria, the EBRD has invested nearly €3.9 billion in 253 projects in the country, with the majority in the private sector.

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