This article is part of K Quarterly # Issue 1 / November-January 2017. Contact us for subscription options on [email protected]
Filip Genov, Unicredit Bulbank’s first vice-president, is the driver behind its new program for first loans to start-ups. Nine months after the special tool was launched, a total of 2 million euro financing has been approved by the governing committee for seven companies, three of which already obtained the funds. These are Playground Energy which converts kinetic energy on playgrounds into lights and sounds, Sensika Technologies, developer of a business investigation online engine, and Coursedot, which specializes in online tech education. All of them have been previously financed by the startup accelerator Launchub and have a potential to grow internationally.
Mr Genov announced that until the end of the year the number of contracts could double. He said that the special program has no limits to its funding, but a single contract should not exceed 200-300 thousand euro. Mr Genov also explained that the loans could be converted into share capital subscribed by the bank. The average interest charged on the first start-up customers is 9.75%, way above the average rate in corporate lending.