The jobs and economy emergency package gets a follow-up. The first jobs and economy emergency package continues and the government is taking new exceptional measures to financially support entrepreneurs and businesses. Especially for startups, scale-ups and innovative SMEs affected by COVID-19, the Corona Bridging Loan (COL) has been created. Earlier, €100 million was granted and that amount is now being supplemented by 150 million. With this, the government is responding to the large funding needs of these companies.
More than 500 million requested
Since the COL opened on April 29, more than 1,400 companies applied. In total, they applied for more than 500 million and the average amount applied for is about €360,000. Regional Development Companies (ROMs) provide the bridging loans on favorable terms at the request of the Cabinet. The amounts of the loans vary between €50,000 and €2 million.
"We knew the funding need was high but the amount of applications surprised even us. That additional budget will now be available for startups, scale-ups and innovative SMEs is a good thing. This gives them the financial space they need to bridge this period and continue their innovations. Because innovations are essential for the future earning capacity of the Netherlands and the jobs of tomorrow," said Rinke Zonneveld (director InnovationQuarter) on behalf of the ROMs.
"The application portal will remain open for now"
The impact of the corona crisis is significant for startups and scale-ups: a survey by Techleap.co.uk shows that 55% of companies are seeing a drop in demand due to the loss of existing customers or the absence of new customers. Raising the necessary, new funding is a problem for this group. They have limited access to other support measures aimed at debt-financed companies. Together with the ROMs and Invest-NL, Techleap developed an online application portal where companies can apply for COVID-19 bridge funding.
CEO Techleap.nl Nils Beers: "The COL is intended to help startups in acute need. This EUR 150 million is an important investment to preserve this sector. Startups and scale-ups are a crucial link in the engine for the recovery of the Netherlands. It is imperative that now provinces also co-invest and that efforts are made to take measures to promote recovery."
About the COL
The Corona-OverbruggingsLening (COL) is an emergency loan for innovative entrepreneurs and SMEs without a bank credit relationship who have run into financial difficulties due to Covid19. This scheme was created in intensive cooperation between the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (EZK), the joint Regional Development Companies (ROMs) and TechLeap.nl with also close involvement of Invest-NL. At the request of EZK, the ROMs provide bridging loans between €50,000 and €2 million.