The European Commission and the European Investment Fund (EIF) have just published a call for expression of interest to reinforce the institutional capacity of financial intermediaries in the microfinance and social entrepreneurship space that have not yet reached financial sustainability.
As it was the case for the guarantee scheme kicked-off mid-2015 or the various equity products launched more recently (under EFSI), this funding to reinforce the capacity building of financial intermediaries is made possible through the European Programme for Employment and Social Innovation Programme (EaSI, 2014-2020).
Open until September 2023 and implemented by the EIF, EaSI’s Capacity Building Investments Window is earmarking 16 million euros for financial intermediaries willing to invest (through equity), for instance:
- in their organisational development and expansion, including branch expansion, scaling up or developing IT infrastructure (e.g. mobile banking), or investments in human resources such as recruitment and training of staff;
- in order to strengthen their operational and institutional capabilities, including, but not limited to, investments in working capital and in improving the strategic / governance capabilities so as to maintain a balanced business, financial sustainability and social performance focus;
- seed financing (for newly created intermediaries with a strong social focus).
· About EU’s equity instruments: EVPA’s EU Webinar #8: “EU Funding Update for VP/SI Practitioners: EFSI Social Impact” (here)
· Brochure published by the European Commission on EaSI’s main instruments designed to support financial intermediaries providing finance to social enterprises (available in EN, FR & DE).
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