Slovenia Gets €100m Fund to Attract Foreign Investors

By , 15 May 2019, 09:00 AM Business
Slovenia Gets €100m Fund to Attract Foreign Investors JL Flanner

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STA, 13 May 2019 - Small and medium-sized companies in Slovenia as well as those providing for up to 3,000 full-time jobs will be able to apply for EUR 100 million in funds offered by the Slovenian Equity Growth Investment Programme (SEGIP). The new scheme is to help attract private investors from abroad.

The European Investment Fund (EIF), and Slovenia's SID export and development bank each contributed EUR 50 million to the programme.

According to SID CEO Sibil Svilan, the initiative for the SEGIP had come from SID after the crisis revealed a major deficiency in private equities in Slovenia.

In November 2017, a deal to set up the EUR 100-million programme was signed with the EIF, with the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) providing for guarantees.

The goal of the programme is to provide equity financing to the small, medium-sized and mid-cap companies as well as attract foreign private investors and strengthen local capabilities by supporting the up-and-coming managers of Slovenia-based entities whose investments are focussed on Slovenia.

Gabriele Todesca of the EIF said at today's presentation that alternative finance still represented a small share among all financial sources available to local small and medium-sized companies, which slowed down the economic growth.

"The EIF is happy to contribute to the tackling of this issue through the SEGIP," he said.

The EIF has chosen KF Finance and KD Skladi to manage the private capital funds.

Tone Pekolj of the KF Finance funds noted that the first generation of Slovenian entrepreneurs were now passing their companies on to the next generation, and were willing to open the door to other investors.

Meanwhile, KD Skladi CEO Luka Podlogar stressed that small and medium-sized companies were the engine of the Slovenian economy and that because of the lack of private capital funds many of them failed to realise their potential.

According to the SID bank, the SEGIP is not intended for start-ups or companies in trouble. It will support investments aimed at strengthening or expanding companies in Slovenia, which also entails hiring and job creation.

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