The European Investment Bank (EIB) has granted a EUR 500 million loan to Banco Santander to finance the investment projects of SMEs (firms with up to 250 employees) and midcaps (firms with up to 3000 employees). The EIB funds will be earmarked for financing projects mainly in the industrial and service sectors.

This is the EIB’s fourth loan of this type to Banco Santander under its policy of supporting the economic development of small and medium-sized companies in order to foster economic recovery and job creation. Under the agreement, Banco Santander will match the EIB loan with the same amount, meaning that a total of EUR 1 billion will be made available to finance the investment projects of smaller businesses.

The EIB loan will provide these companies with long-term finance for their investment projects and credit lines on favourable terms to fund their working capital requirements of more than two years. The subloans will finance investment projects costing up to EUR 25 million in the case of SMEs and up to EUR 50 million in the case of midcaps, in Spain.

Part of this EIB finance for Banco Santander will take the form of the subscription of bonds issued by a securitisation fund.

In 2013, the EIB Group (including the European Investment Fund) supported SMEs and midcaps to the tune of EUR 21 900 million (EUR 18 500 million of which came from the EIB), benefiting some 230 000 firms throughout Europe. In Spain, the EIB provided EUR 4 836 million worth of new credit lines for financing the investment projects of more than 45 000 such firms.