Entrepreneurs looking for new opportunities to expand
In the first half of the year, KredEx received 309 new guarantee applications and 260 new contracts were concluded. Over a period of six months, enterprises received EUR 62.8 million of extra financing with the aid of KredEx guarantees. Compared to the first half of last year, enterprises sought more often to use KredEx guarantees for guaranteeing short-term investments.
While in the first half of 2016, KredEx guarantees were used most often for investment loans, then in the first two quarters of this year they were used for overdraft and working capital loans (59% of the volume guaranteed), followed by investment loans (23%) and bank guarantees (14%). In the first half of the year, KredEx guaranteed the obligations of more than 220 enterprises that are planning to create more than 300 new jobs.
According to Jarmo Liiver, Head of the Enterprise Division of KredEx, the volumes have decreased when compared to last year, with the reason being several large investment projects that were postponed until 2016, due to the fact that KredEx increased the maximum guarantee sum per enterprise from EUR 2 million to EUR 5 million at the end of 2015. Also, alternative financing solutions have become accessible to enterprises, in which case KredEx guarantees are not needed. Consequently, a certain decrease in volumes was in fact expected this year. “While last year we made a record EUR 164.3 million available to Estonian enterprises with the guarantee, then this year our volumes have stabilized. It is great to see that, for many enterprises, access to capital has improved significantly over the past few years. However, it is a bit concerning that access to capital is still an issue for new enterprises and micro-enterprises. Together with other participants from the financial market, we are constantly working towards improving it,” said Liiver.
Among the sectors, the processing industry is the most prominent, followed by construction and retail trade. When compared to the beginning of last year, the prevalence of enterprises from the sectors of information and communications, and healthcare and social services, has increased.