Austria: Investment Plan - EIB provides total of EUR 80m to Zumtobel Group
12 February 2019
Second EUR 40m tranche signed
EU bank funds to be used for research and development
Financing provided under Investment Plan for Europe, or Juncker Plan
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing the Austrian lighting company Zumtobel Group with the second EUR 40m tranche of an EUR 80m financing programme to strengthen its research and development activities. The EIB loan is backed by a guarantee from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). EFSI is an essential pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe – also known as the Juncker Plan – under which the EIB and the European Commission are working together as strategic partners and the EIB’s financing operations are boosting the competitiveness of the European economy.
The Zumtobel Group is an international lighting group and a leading supplier of innovative lighting solutions, lighting components and associated services. It is one of the European market leaders for professional lighting systems and components.
Andrew McDowell, EIB Vice-President responsible for financing in Austria, said, “Research, development and innovation are key ingredients for ensuring sustainable growth and creating high-value jobs. For the EIB, this is a top priority. I therefore very much welcome this new partnership with the Zumtobel Group, one of Austria's most research-intensive company.”
European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said, “Corporate Research & Development is essential to maintain Europe's leadership in the field of innovation. Thanks to this new Investment Plan agreement, the Zumtobel Group will strengthen its competitiveness and keep on developing new products in the lighting sector. This is good news for the Austrian and the European economy as a whole.”
Zumtobel Group CFO Thomas Tschol added, “In an increasingly interconnected digital world, product innovation is the key to long-term success. As a global lighting industry player, we invest heavily in the development of new products. The EUR 80m in EIB financing is therefore an important contribution to forging ahead with Zumtobel Group's innovation leadership.”
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is participating in the financing of research and development (R&D) in the field of opto-semiconductors (OS), by lending over EUR 200m to OSRAM GmbH, which is developing new low energy components to replace traditional bulbs. The loan contract has just been signed in Munich.
The European Investment Fund (EIF), the arm of the EIB Group specialising in risk capital instruments, risk financing for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and innovation, and Bpifrance, the French public investment bank, have signed a financial agreement to increase lending to innovative SMEs and mid-caps in France thanks to the guarantee financed from the EU budget under the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). The European Commission (EC) and the EIB Group will deploy the Investment Plan for Europe (IPE) via EFSI.
The European Commission and the EIB Group have delivered on their pledge to mobilise EUR 315 billion in additional investment under the Investment Plan for Europe, the Juncker Plan. Backed by a budget guarantee from the European Union and own resources from the EIB Group, 898 operations have been approved, which are expected to trigger EUR 335 billion in investment across the 28 EU Member States.