Business news from Ukraine

EBRD provides Bank Lviv with EUR22.5 mln financing

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is providing Bank Lviv with a financing package consisting of a EUR7.5m guarantee to cover the risks of new lending of up to EUR30m and a hryvnia loan equivalent of up to EUR15m of private micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) financing.

“The loan is divided into two tranches – EUR10m committed and EUR5m non-dedicated, each maturing in three years – will help Bank Lviv maintain a sustainable and diversified funding base to ensure continued access to medium-term financing for businesses,” the bank said in a statement on Thursday.

It is indicated that the cost of financing the loan will be reduced by subsidizing the interest rate in local currency within the framework of the European Union’s EU4Business initiative in Ukraine.

According to the release, an unsecured risk-sharing instrument worth EUR7.5m will also be provided in two equal tranches, each of which will cover 50% of the credit risk of new loans of Bank Lviv totaling up to EUR30m, but not more than 50% of the portfolio. The facility will help Bank Lviv provide access to finance for Ukrainian companies operating in critical sectors such as primary agriculture and agricultural services, food processing, transportation and logistics, retail and pharmaceuticals, the EBRD said.

It added that up to a further EUR4.5m of this total portfolio of EUR30m will support long-term investments by private MSMEs in EU-compliant clean technologies. Eligible sub-borrowers will also receive EU-funded technical assistance and investment incentives upon completion of their investment projects.

The EBRD recalls that the project is made possible by a 50% first loss risk coverage by donors.

As reported, the relevant project was approved by the board of directors of the international bank on July 18, and the necessary documents were signed on Thursday.

The EBRD recalls that Bank Lviv, owned by European shareholders, is a regional SME-oriented bank and one of the fastest growing in western Ukraine: its loan portfolio grew from $35 million in 2017 to $133 million in the first quarter of 2023. Its head office is located in Lviv, and its network includes 19 branches, 13 of them in Lviv region and six in other cities.

According to the National Bank of Ukraine, as of the beginning of June 2023, Bank Lviv ranked 27th (UAH 8.25 bln) among 65 banks operating in the country in terms of assets.

According to the information on the website of Bank Lviv, its shareholders at the beginning of this year were: ResponsAbility Participations (Switzerland) – 48.557189%, Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO) – 13.93623% and Icelandic citizen Margeir Peturson – 37.4692%.


EBRD provides Kredobank with EUR25mn guarantee and EUR25mn loan

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), with partial support from the European Union, is providing Ukraine’s Kredobank with a EUR25m guarantee to cover the risks of new lending, as well as a EUR25m Trade Facilitation Program (TFP) loan for trade finance to Ukrainian clients.

“The new risk-sharing agreement will allow Credobank to reduce the funding gap, and continued access to financing will help companies to remove bottlenecks in trade in food and agricultural products,” – quoted in the message on Wednesday the words of the EBRD Managing Director in the sector of financial institutions Francis Malizh.

It is noted that the new financing will be available to companies operating in such critical sectors as primary agriculture and agricultural services, food processing, transportation and logistics, retail and pharmaceuticals.

Under the risk-sharing agreement, which the two institutions with prior cooperation experience signed on Wednesday in London, the EBRD is providing a EUR25m unfunded risk-sharing instrument that covers 50% of the credit risk on Kredobank’s new financing totaling EUR100m, but not more than 50% of the portfolio. The EBRD guarantee is provided in two equal tranches.

In addition, EUR15m of the total EUR100m portfolio covered by the guarantee will be available to finance long-term investments by micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in technologies and equipment meeting EU standards, including investments in sustainable and green technologies under the EU Eastern Partnership SME Competitiveness Program (EaP SMEC), the EBRD said.

He added that participation in the EaP SMEC program will also allow Kredobank and its clients to receive expert assistance in the form of training and advisory support. Eligible borrowers will also receive grant support in the form of investment incentives upon completion of their investment projects.

The EBRD guarantee is backed by a 50% first-loss coverage guarantee financed by donors as part of the sustainability package. The conclusion of this new agreement increases to EUR468 million the total amount of funding supported by such guarantees since the beginning of the war.

As for the EUR25mn under the Trade Facilitation Program, the lender notes that participation in this program will allow Kredobank to increase its support to Ukrainian exporters and importers.

Kredobank is one of the leading banks in western Ukraine and as of the beginning of June it ranks 14th (UAH 46.85 bln) out of 65 operating banks in Ukraine in terms of assets. Kredobank is fully owned by PKO Bank Polski SA, the largest systemically important bank in Poland, whose shares are listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange.

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Prometheus and EBRD to provide 60 thousand grant places for training Ukrainian entrepreneurs

Educational platform Prometheus and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) open the program “Bootcamp economic recovery” with 60 thousand grant places for training of Ukrainian entrepreneurs, the co-founder of Prometheus Ivan Primachenko in Facebook reported.
According to the message, Ukrainian entrepreneurs will be taught by Harvard, the University of Virginia’s Darden Business School and Rice University, as well as the co-founders of Novaya Poshta, Preply, Eugene Klopotenko and other leading entrepreneurs in Ukraine.
The program includes four courses: “How to Start Your Own Business in Times of Uncertainty: A Step-by-Step Guide from Ukraine’s Top Entrepreneurs”; “CS50: Fundamentals of Programming for Business Professionals” from Harvard University; “Grow to Greatness: Smart Growth for Private Business” from the Darden Business School at Virginia Tech; and “Finance for Non-Financial People” from Rice University.
“I haven’t yet seen top American universities open their business courses for free, and in a different language. This is a unique chance that should be taken here and now,” Primachenko wrote.
Registration for the Economic Recovery Bootcamp program is open from today at https://prometheus ua/prometheus-plus/bootcamp).

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EBRD lends EUR50 mln to state-owned Ukreximbank

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed a EUR50 million loan agreement with Ukraine’s state-owned Ukreximbank, the loan funds will be used to finance private clients and municipalities.
“Ensuring uninterrupted financing through time-tested partner financial institutions such as Ukreximbank despite the war so that the private sector and municipalities can continue to operate, provide services and support the country is a priority for the EBRD in Ukraine,” EBRD Managing Director for Eastern Europe and the Caucasus Matteo Patrone said in a release Friday.
It is specified that the EBRD’s special crisis response fund covers the risk on the EUR25 million loan.
“During the war and post-war reconstruction phase, it is very important for Ukreximbank’s clients in priority sectors to have access to investment, commercial financing and war risk coverage. The new EBRD financing will certainly contribute to greater sustainability and adaptability of the Ukrainian economy,” said in turn Oleksandr Shchur, a member of the supervisory board of Ukreximbank.
According to the National Bank of Ukraine at the beginning of May, Ukreximbank with total assets of 275.46 billion UAH is the third largest Ukrainian bank among 65 operating in the country.


EBRD and 19 development finance institutions sign Memorandum of Understanding on Investment in Ukraine

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and 19 financial development institutions (DFIs) signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the Conference on Reconstruction of Ukraine in London to promote joint investments in the private sector of the Ukrainian economy.
“The signing of this memorandum … was the next step in the implementation of the agreement between the EBRD and the G7 DFIs to create a common platform for investment in Ukraine, which was announced at the G7 meeting in Tokyo last month,” the bank said in a press release.
It is noted that the main goal of creating the joint platform between the EBRD and DFI is to promote co-financing by strengthening cooperation and dialogue between partners in the context of providing assistance for reconstruction of Ukraine.
It is noted that the priority of investment initiatives will be given to the private sector of Ukraine’s economy.
“Ukraine’s financial needs during the recovery phase will be very significant, and therefore will require the combined efforts of financial institutions. To maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of their activities, Ukraine’s partners must ensure careful coordination among themselves. The private sector will play an extremely important role in the recovery of the Ukrainian economy,” stressed the EBRD.
The Bank points out that it is ready to work together with the DFI to improve the efficiency and quality of assistance to Ukraine and neighboring countries affected by Russia’s military aggression.
It is specified that the memorandum was signed by British International Investment, Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, DEG (Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft), Development Finance Institute Canada (DFIC), Japan Bank for International Cooperation, Japan International Cooperation Agency, Proparco, USA International Development Finance Corporation, Belgium Investment Company for developing countries.
Also in this list are Compañía Española de financiación del desarrollo (Cofides), Finnfund, Investment Fund for Developing Countries, Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden, Norfund, Oesterreichische Entwicklungsbank, Sociedade para o Financiamento do desenvolvimento, instituicao financeira de credito, Swiss Investment Fund for Developing Markets and Swedfund international.

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EBRD predicts wave of investments in development of renewable energy sources in Ukraine

Ukraine after the war will be very interesting for private investors to develop renewable energy sources, said Harry Boyd Carpenter, managing director for climate strategy and implementation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
“There’s also going to be a huge wave of investment in renewable energy. Ukraine does have a success story because before the war there was an extraordinary boom in RE – 5 GW of privately financed renewable energy. And that’s the template for Ukraine in the future,” Carpenter said during a discussion on Ukraine’s transition from coal to clean energy ahead of the London Recovery Conference (URC2023), scheduled for June 21-22.
At the same time, according to him, Ukraine will also receive public sector money, but it should be spent primarily on the development of nuclear energy, as well as on construction and reconstruction of networks, to ensure, among other things, the work of decentralized system of renewable energy.
At the same time, the top manager of the EBRD called the commitment of Ukraine to abandon coal in power generation extremely important, noting that this course determines the further development of not only energy, but also the economy and the whole country.
He noted that the contours of the energy sector of Ukraine in the future are quite clear – it will be built on nuclear and renewable energy, and the country has huge resources in all these areas.
At the same time, Carpenter noted that RES used to develop under conditions of “imperfect market and tariffs”, calling it a difficult transition period, but expressed his belief that in the future their development will be based on three fundamental pillars that will remove these problems.
“The first will be a commitment to a green future (…). The second is market reforms. We need a well-functioning, transparent, clearly delineated market. And the third will be integration with the European energy system, which is already in full swing,” the EBRD top manager pointed out.
Besides, Carpenter assured that EBRD intends to continue to support Ukraine financially.
“We will provide Ukraine with EUR3 billion of support. And we are already halfway there. Much of this has come in the form of liquidity support for the energy sector – Naftogaz and Ukrenergo,” the banker emphasized.
Announcing URC2023 on June, 19 First vice-premier Yulia Sviridenko announced the goals in 10 years to show the new Ukraine and to reach over 100 GW of new green power generation capacity, to produce 40 million tons of “green” steel and to bring GDP to $1 trillion per year from $161 billion in 2022.
As reported, at the end of December 2022, NEC Ukrenergo, inter alia, attracted EUR300 million of credit funds from the EBRD to purchase equipment to restore substations subjected to massive Russian missile strikes, as well as to replenish working capital.
NJSC Naftogaz attracted a EUR300 million loan from the EBRD at the end of last year, and later, in early 2023, it received a grant of nearly EUR200 million for the purchase of gas.
According to the president of the bank, Odile Renaud-Basso, the EBRD in 2022 increased the amount of investment in projects in Ukraine to EUR1.7 billion compared to approximately EUR1 billion that it invested annually before. It plans to invest EUR3bn in Ukraine during 2022-2023.

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