Barcelona City Council, with the ICF and AVALIS, is promoting a 12 million euro credit line for micro-SMEs and the self-employed

07 October 2020

Small and medium-sized companies and the self-employed will be able to apply for the microcredits, which are for 12,500 euros, electronically through the Barcelona Activa Business Support Office from 5 October.

Barcelona, 8 October 2020. - Through Barcelona Activa, the Institut Català de Finances (ICF), Avalis de Catalunya and Barcelona City Council are launching the B·Crèdits loan scheme, which will make 12 million euros available for the city's economic fabric, with a view to compensating for the lack of liquidity brought about by the COVID-19 emergency.

Through an agreement between the three bodies, these loans will be aimed primarily at the trade, catering, tourism, care, education and sport sectors, creative industries and self-employed women and women entrepreneurs, who have suffered the effects of the COVID-19 crisis. The main objective of these microcredits is to help to reactivate businesses.

These microcredits, which can be applied for at the Barcelona Activa Business Support Office, are part of the economic recovery plan promoted by Barcelona City Council's Economic Response Centre (CECORE), created at the beginning of the pandemic to revive the city's economy in the short, medium and long term. Preserving jobs and supporting companies and the self-employed is a priority for Barcelona City Council, which aims to give more support to local businesses through these loans with guarantees and on good conditions.

Jaume Collboni, First Deputy Mayor for Economy, Employment, Competitiveness and Finance in Barcelona City Council, stated: “Between us we have designed a financial product that, as well as being 100% guaranteed by the City Council, allows self-employed people and micro-enterprises to maintain their businesses and continue to create and innovate, until previous levels of income are restored. The key to this product is that they have a one-year grace period, which means that businesses do not have to repay the loan during this period. This turns them into another lever of economic reactivation, with the support of leading institutions to make these loans possible and guarantee them."

This line of financing is in addition to the many initiatives launched by the ICF and Avalis de Catalunya to cover the liquidity needs of the business community arising from the COVID-19 crisis and to preserve jobs. A total of more than 1.1 billion euros has been made available to self-employed people, SMEs, companies and organisations.

Loan conditions

The amount loaned is 12,500 euros to be repaid over 5 years, including a one-year grace period. The microcredits will be 100% guaranteed by the Sociedad de Garantia Recíproca de Catalunya, Avalis de Catalunya, SGR, which will receive a contribution of €2 million from Barcelona City Council. Beneficiaries of the loans must become members of Avalis by paying a 200-euro share subscription.

These conditions will be valid until 31 December 2020, and will be reviewed from 2021 to take into account the market conditions that Avalis and ICF are applying to this type of operation at that time.

Loan management and how to apply for loans

Microcredits can be applied for from 5 October 2020 through Barcelona Activa, which will collect all the required information and documentation. (Go to: Avalis de Catalunya will analyse and, where appropriate, approve the loan; Barcelona Activa will manage digital signatures for the operations and the ICF will disburse the loans.

About the ICF

The ICF is the public financial entity of Catalonia. It has as a main mission to promote the funding of the entrepreneurial fabric in Catalonia in order to contribute to the growth, the innovation and the sustainability of the Catalan economy. In this sense, it commits itself actively to the achievement of the Objectives of Sustainable Development in accordance to the Agenda 2030 of the United Nations.

The ICF acts as complement of the private financial sector, offering an extense range|gamma of solutions of funding centered on loans, guarantees and investment in venture capital. Since 2014 it is a member of the European Association of Public Banks|Benches (EAPB), that he|she groups big part of the banks|benches and the public financial entities that work in Europe.

About Avalis de Catalunya

The mission of Avalis de Catalunya, S.G.R., a non-profit organization, is to help SMEs and the self-employed in Catalonia access credit and obtain better financing terms by providing guarantees to financial institutions and the ICF. Likewise, it aids with the bidding and execution of public tenders.

The institutional partners of Avalis de Catalunya include the Generalitat de Catalunya, the Institut Català de Finances, industry organizations such as Foment de Treball and PIMEC, as well as almost all financial institutions operating in Catalonia.

About Barcelona Activa

Barcelona Activa is a municipal company focusing on knowledge and talent. The agency's mission is to promote economic policy and local development with a view to improving the quality of life of the citizens of Barcelona through the promotion of employment and entrepreneurship and support for companies, responding to the different needs of people in their area from the perspective of the plural economy, which includes the social economy and the solidarity-based economy.

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