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Nikolay Genchev, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Fund of Funds: the Fund has BGN 2 billion of Public Resources Available in the Next Programming Period

The Fund of Funds has supported over 2 500 projects, financing of nearly BGN 600 million from the old programming period is still available, Nikolay Genchev announced on the BULGARIA ON AIR morning show

15.12.2022

"In the next programming period, the Fund of Funds expects new, fresh public resources in the range of BGN 2 billion to support a wide range of beneficiaries," said Nikolay Genchev, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Fund Manager of Financial Instruments in Bulgaria EAD (Fund of Funds), whose principal is the Ministry of Innovation and Growth, speaking on the morning show of BULGARIA ON AIR, "Bulgaria in the Morning".

According to Nikolay Genchev, a significant amount of private co-financing will be added to the BGN 2 billion of public resources. The total amount of resources in the Fund could thus reach BGN 4 billion.

Nikolay Genchev said that the task of the Fund of Funds was to structure and manage financial instruments under the various European programmes. He stressed that the final beneficiaries of funds received from the Fund could be different types of businesses - start-ups, small, large, growing companies, as well as municipalities, regions, water and sewerage companies across the country, farmers, small and family businesses, etc. "The beneficiaries can come from the widest palette of business entities, as well as state and municipal structures," the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Fund explained.

"So far, the Fund of Funds has financed 2 500 projects of both companies and municipalities. This includes equity investments in more than 200 innovative start-ups, nearly 700 micro-loans for small businesses and social enterprises, almost BGN 500,000,000 in debt financing for regional and municipal projects, BGN 540 million provided to 1 300 small and medium-sized enterprises to overcome the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, etc.," Nikolay Genchev announced. In his estimates, the number of funded projects and businesses is expected to reach 4 500 by the end of next year. "We are talking not only about debt and equity financing for various businesses, but also municipal and regional projects, the water cycle, agriculture, rural regions, various cultural and community projects and initiatives, etc.," he said. "One possible approach for applying is to approach one of the private equity funds investing in innovative start-ups. You can get money from them, for example," Genchev said.

"Nearly BGN 600 million is still available for financing, in various forms, from the old programming period," Genchev said and urged the business and the government entities to make the most of the resource.

"The funds rolled over from the previous programming period and available for use in the coming year include BGN 200 million for equity investments through the five funds, BGN 200 million for debt financing through seven banks, BGN 150 million for municipal projects, BGN 75 million for agriculture, and a significant amount of credit resources for micro-loans to businesses," the SB Chairman added. He also said that the Fund operates a total of BGN 1.2 billion of public resources (both EU and national), leveraged with about BGN 1 billion of private co-financing, or a total of BGN 2.2 billion, which have already reached their final beneficiaries.

It should be recalled that on 16 November the Minister of Innovation and Growth Alexander Pulev appointed three members of the Supervisory Board of the company, including Nikolay Genchev. This was done in implementation of the Decision of the Council of Ministers of 5 October 2022 to change the Articles of Association of Fund Manager of Financial Instruments in Bulgaria EAD and to shift from a one-tier form of governance (with a Management Board) to a two-tier form (with a Management Board and a Supervisory Board). The appointment was yet another step in the process of introducing clean and transparent policies at the Fund of Funds and implementing industry best practices.