• The Entrepreneurship Fund

Mission

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) aims to foster economic development and prosperity in Southeast Europe and the Eastern Neighbourhood Region by investing in the success of micro and small enterprises as well as improved living conditions for private households.

Approach

EFSE invests in carefully selected local financial intermediaries for on-lending to micro and small enterprises and private households. These investees include commercial banks, microfinance institutions, and non-bank financial institutions such as leasing companies.

In addition, the EFSE Development Facility provides technical assistance, training, and other non-financial support to institutions and individuals to anchor and multiply the fund’s impact. Together, EFSE and its Development Facility build an environment that fosters sustainable entrepreneurship.

Macro support for micro businesses

Please click on your country of interest.

Albania

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 1
Partner Institutions: FED Invest
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 120,342,847
Number of active end-borrowers: 537
Development Facility project volume: EUR 3,347,072

Armenia

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 4
Partner Institutions: ACBA, ACBA Leasing, Araratbank, Inecobank
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 758,250,294
Number of active end-borrowers: 2,579
Development Facility project volume: EUR 1,998,825

Azerbaijan

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 2
Partner Institution: AccessBank, Bank Respublika
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 229,431,435
Number of active end-borrowers: 181
Development Facility project volume: EUR 918,859

Belarus

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 1
Partner Institutions: BNB - Belarusky Narodny Bank
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 86,534,584
Number of active end-borrowers: -
Development Facility project volume: EUR 158,12

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 13
Partner Institutions: Addiko Bank a.d. Banja Luka, Intesa Sanpaolo Banka, MCC EKI, MCF EKI, MF Banka, MI-BOSPO, Mikrofin, NLB Banka Sarajevo, Partner, Raiffeisen Bank BA, Raiffeisen Leasing, Sparkasse Bank d.d. BiH, Sunrise
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 769,454,527
Number of active end-borrowers: 14,588
Development Facility project volume: EUR 6,561,807

Bulgaria

Active Number of Partner Institutions: na
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 45,918,866
Number of active end-borrowers: na
Development Facility project volume: EUR 28,184

Croatia

Active Number of Partner Institutions: na
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 24,630,301
Number of active end-borrowers: na
Development Facility project volume: EUR 678,430

Georgia

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 8
Partner Institutions: Bank of Georgia, Basisbank, BGEO Group, Credo, Crystal Micro Financial Organisation, Lazika Capital, TBC Bank, TBC Leasing GE
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 1,320,974,645
Number of active end-borrowers: 24,034
Development Facility project volume: EUR 4,107,860

Kosovo

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 4
Partner Institutions: AfK, BKT Kosovo, KEP Trust, KRK
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 320,288,925
Number of active end-borrowers: 4,713
Development Facility project volume: EUR 3,683,055

North Macedonia

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 3
Partner Institutions: Halkbank MK, Horizonti, Sparkasse Bank MK
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 216,008,503
Number of active end-borrowers: 1,329
Development Facility project volume: EUR 982,111

Moldova

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 2
Partner Institutions: BT Leasing MD, MAIB
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 185,299,378
Number of active end-borrowers: 1,010
Development Facility project volume: EUR 3,094,708

Montenegro

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 3
Partner Institutions: alter Modus, CKB, Erste Bank Podgorica
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 258,124,860
Number of active end-borrowers: 3,025
Development Facility project volume: EUR 1,483,550

Romania

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 9
Partner Institutions: Agricover, Alpha Bank, Banca Transilvania, BT Leasing RO, BT Microfinantare, Garanti Leasing RO,Libra Internet Bank SA, Patria Credit, Vitas Romania
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 1,209,817,525
Number of active end-borrowers: 15,960
Development Facility project volume: EUR 2,586,916

Serbia

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 4
Partner Institutions: 3 Bank, Eurobank, Procredit Bank RS, UniCredit Bank RS
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 1,371,336,535
Number of active end-borrowers: 8,676
Development Facility project volume: EUR 2,373,434

Turkey

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 7
Partner Institutions: Denizbank, Garanti Bank, Garanti Leasing TR, QNB Finans Leasing, QNB Finansbank, Yapi Kredi Bank, Yapi Kredi Leasing
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 1,821,944,151
Number of active end-borrowers: 12,425
Development Facility project volume: EUR 4,230,892

Ukraine

Active Number of Partner Institutions: 7
Partner Institutions: Agroprosperis Bank, Bank Lviv, Credit Agricole Bank, Kredobank, OTP Leasing, Piraeus Bank UA, ProCredit Bank UA
Cumulative volume of sub-loans since inception: EUR 340,845,142
Number of active end-borrowers: 1,529
Development Facility project volume: EUR 2,586,355

Who Does EFSE Finance?

EFSE provides funding to local financial institutions that have confirmed their commitment to the fund’s mission, and which have the capacity to reach entrepreneurs and private households. By supporting the ability of these financial intermediaries to serve EFSE’s target group, the fund is not only amplifying its impact through the utilization of local financial infrastructure, it is also strengthening the ability of the financial sector in these regions to advance sustainable development in the long term..

EFSE provides 3 types of loans to its financial intermediaries. These are then used for on-lending for one or more of the following predefined purposes:

  • Micro and small enterprises finance
  • Financing for rural areas
  • Housing finance

EFSE in numbers

Key figures as of Q2 2022

EUR 1001.8 MILLION

committed portfolio

70

active partner lending institutions

90,586

active sub-borrowers

Key figures since inception of the Development Facility in 2006 

40.4 MILLION

Development Facility total project volume approved

35,404

number of beneficiaries of Development Facility projects

Blended finance for more impact

EFSE was one of the first impact investment vehicles to pioneer a public-private partnership model. This layered “blended finance” structure leverages public contributions as a risk cushion to mobilize private investments – thus unleashing more resources for impact. As a result, public investors can achieve more social and economic development for their money, and private investors can enter markets that may otherwise have been viewed as too risky to enter alone.

Local currency for local business

Local currency lending is a key element of responsible finance: When borrowers can invest in their home or business using the same currency as their income, they are protected from potentially hazardous ups and downs in exchange rates. EFSE has dedicated instruments to absorb this currency risk so that investees do not have to. The European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Cooperation and Development (BMZ) both contributed to a special fund layer for this purpose: the “L-shares”. EFSE is now active in spreading this responsible financing practice, as well as the awareness of its importance.

Innovations for financial inclusion

EFSE has a solid 15-year track record and a reputation as a stalwart partner in the region. But it is also an agile agent of innovation. Itself a pioneer, EFSE seeks out high-potential new developments, such as in fintech, to increase financial inclusion and supports entrepreneurs and partners alike with the development and implementation of new technologies.

In-region offices for on-the-ground presence

EFSE is active in 16 countries in Southeast Europe and the EU Eastern Neighbourhood. Our local experts work from in-region offices close to our clients and networks. EFSE’s deep understanding of the markets where we are active comes from working side-by-side with investees, partners, national regulators, and entrepreneurship organisations to provide tailored support for local needs.

Technical assistance for systemic impact

EFSE’s financial investments are complemented by technical assistance provided by the EFSE Development Facility. Because making a lasting difference means building an environment where positive impact can take root: The Development Facility works with institutions and individuals alike to build capacities, train skills, connect ecosystem players, study the market, and build a culture of entrepreneurship and responsible finance.

Cultivating entrepreneurship

Corporate Governance

EFSE’s governance is based on a solid foundation and transparent processes. EFSE is set up as a SICAV-SIF under Luxembourg law, a proven vehicle for numerous impact investment funds.

The Board of Directors, appointed by the fund’s shareholders, is EFSE’s main decision-making body. The Investment Committee approves investment proposals submitted by the fund’s advisor, Finance in Motion. The members of the EFSE Investment Committee are appointed by the Board of Directors.

General Shareholder Assembly

The public investors into EFSE’s first-loss shares form the fund’s shareholder base, including fund initiator KfW, the European Commission, the German Federal Ministry for Cooperation and Development, and more. Private investors include impact-minded institutions such as ethical banks, pension funds, family offices, and more.

Board of Directors

The EFSE Board of Directors are representatives elected by the shareholders to exercise oversight of the fund and determine its strategic direction and approach.

Advisory Group

This forum for central bank representatives of the countries where EFSE is present provides a platform for sharing local developments, experiences, and policy recommendations.

Audit & Risk Committee

Appointed by the Board, this committee is responsible for the fund’s internal controls, accounting integrity, and risk management process.

Investment Committee

The Board of Directors appoints an Investment Committee comprising experts in the field of development finance. The Investment Committee approves all investments made by EFSE.

FX Committee

The Board also appoints an FX Committee to vet pricing and other matters pertaining to the fund’s local currency investments made utilising its “L-Share” class.

Manager

Hauck & Aufhäuser Fund Services S.A. is responsible for cash planning, direct operating expenses, FX monitoring, coordinating external tax advisors and hedging counterparties, and other management services under Luxembourg law.

Advisor

The Advisor, Finance in Motion GmbH, is the implementing arm of the fund, working directly with the Board and Committees to propose investments, advise on strategies, liaise with investors and investees, and carry out the decisions of the Board and Committees.

A portrait of EFSE Board Chairperson Dr Klaus Müller

Klaus Müller
Chairperson

more about Klaus

Christoph Achini

more about Christoph

Hubert Cottogni

more about Hubert

Volker Oel

more about Volker

Markus Aschendorf

more about Markus

Andrea Hagmann

more about Andrea

Nico Pijl

more about Nico

Sylvia Gansser-Potts

more about Sylvia

EFSE’S HISTORY

The CEO of Alter Modus microfinance institution stands in a yellow jacket
2020
A crowd of participants stands on the stage at the Power of Local Currency event in Moldova
2019
The EFSE Entrepreneurship Academy logo
2018
A Serbian farmer in red overalls poses in front of two cows
2017
A group of fintech entrepreneurs and competition judges stand on a stage
2016
Logo of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development
2015
A man and a youth stand behind the counter at a shop selling bags, books, games, and other supplies
2014
Two women wearing white uniforms, aprons, and chef's hats stand at a counter rolling several dozen cookies on trays
2013
A grocer places items on the shelves of her supermarket
2012
A landscape of Yerevan, the capital of Armenia
2011
Former US President Barack Obama stands on a stage with the G20 SME Finance Challenge Award winners, including Finance in Motion Managing Director Sylvia Wisniwski
2010
Finance in Motion logo
2009
A farmer feeds hay to his cows
2008
Two smiling women wearing black uniforms and colourful aprons stand in their bakery and present cakes to the camera
2007
Men and women in formal clothing gather for a group picture
2006
Men and women in formal clothing gather for a picture, with some sitting at a table and others behind them
2005

Get in touch

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

Contact

Subscribe to OUR Newsletter

Stay up-to-date with the latest EFSE news by subscribing to our newsletter.

Subscribe