EFSE: Sustainable financing for entrepreneurs and households since 2005

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) is an impact fund that takes a comprehensive approach to fostering economic development and prosperity in Southeast Europe and the EU Eastern Neighbourhood Region.

By investing in local financial infrastructure that provides dedicated financing to micro and small enterprises, the fund supports the backbone of these regions’ economy. What is more, EFSE helps create the conditions for local businesses to thrive by building the capacity of local financial institutions or facilitating knowledge-sharing through its Development Facility, and by providing on-the-ground training and mentorship through its Entrepreneurship Academy. In this way, the fund aims to achieve impact on both an individual and systemic level.

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  • “With the two loans we were provided, we were able to buy the new equipment, and are now able to work better and increase our productivity.”

    Neonila Stadnik | Founder, Prolisok Farmhouse | Agroprosperis Bank, Ukraine


  • “Events like the EFSE Entrepreneurship Tournament provide entrepreneurs not only with visibility, but also connect them to the resources to succeed.”

    Markus Aschendorf | Chairman, EFSE Development Facility


  • “We have a lot of work, and I have a lot of plans.”

    Marco Šunjić | Metalworker and business owner | CEPOR, Croatia


  • “My business needs to adapt to changes and challenges as they arise. That’s why I work with Patria Credit.”

    Mladen Marian | Vegetable producer | Patria Credit IFN, Romania


Our impact

EFSE’s mission is to foster economic development and prosperity in Southeast Europe and the EU Eastern Neighbourhood Region by supporting the success of micro and small enterprises (MSEs) and improving living conditions for households.

That is why EFSE invests in the ability of local financial infrastructure to supply the resources entrepreneurs and families need to thrive. By enabling these groups’ access to responsible financing, EFSE strives for long-term, systemic impact.

The fund’s investment activities are complemented by the nonfinancial support of the EFSE Development Facility, which builds capacities, facilitates knowledge exchange, and nourishes an environment for entrepreneurs to grow.


EFSE in numbers

Key figures as of Q2 2021


outstanding portfolio


active partner lending institutions


active sub-borrowers

Key figures since inception of the Development Facility in 2006 


Development Facility total project volume approved


number of beneficiaries of Development Facility projects

The Fund

EFSE is a pioneering impact investment fund. Its blended finance structure set a precedent for combining capital from public and private investors in order to mobilise more resources for sustainable development. EFSE’s solid, fifteen-year track record in expanding financial inclusion has made it a role model for development finance.


The Development Facility

The EFSE Development Facility provides customised technical assistance, training, and other support to institutions, organisations, and individuals across the financial sector and the wider ecosystem. By expanding capacities, opening up access to resources, promoting best practices for sustainable finance, and more, the Development Facility multiplies in the impact and outreach of the fund, creating conditions for sustainable entrepreneurship to thrive.

The Development Facility IN DETAIL

Woman and man working together textile production facility
At its core, entrepreneurship is turning inspiration into success.

Our Donors & Investors

News & Events

Through the new loan, BT Mic will continue to facilitate access to local currency financing for micro and small businesses.

Luxembourg, 01 October…

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Fund’s latest Impact Report details how investments and capacity building resulted in effective, inclusive crisis relief for 40,000 businesses in 2020

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Investment in Georgian lari equivalent to USD 10 million to provide crucial access to long-term business financing for underserved entrepreneurs

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Entrepreneurs and households to benefit from responsible financing that protects them from exchange rate fluctuations 

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Longstanding partners enable vital financing for micro and small enterprises in Western Balkans and EU Eastern Neighbourhood Region

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• Acceleration initiative for Western Balkan tech startups closes second batch

• Two women-led businesses from North Macedonia and Croatia win…

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“Local Currency for Local Success: Ukraine Edition” event connects regional financiers, regulators, and investors to advance responsible finance in…

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International players join “NEXTFinTech – The Bridge to Inclusive Finance” event for tech startup pitching and panel discussions on the future of…

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Luxembourg and Lviv, 1 February 2021 – The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) has joined forces with a new partner in Ukraine, Bank Lviv, to…

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Partners to provide much-needed liquidity to support rural businesses in confronting challenges of COVID-19 crisis

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Get in touch

Interested in learning more about how the fund works, or seeking partnership opportunities? Contact an EFSE representative today.


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