Guarantee Facility

490m €
available financing to SMEs
348.9m €
deployed as at December 2019
jobs supported

What is WB EDIF’s Guarantee Facility?

The WB EDIF Guarantee Facility is managed by the EIF and provides guarantees and counter-guarantees to financial intermediaries in the Western Balkans, supporting SMEs with growth potential.

The WBEDIF Guarantee Facility was first launched in 2013 whereby high demand in the market led to a quick and full allocation of the resources available and a close of the Call for Expression of Interest in 2014.

Following the successful implementation of the WB EDIF GF, the WB EDIF GF II was signed between the EIF and the European Commission in December 2015. The corresponding second open Call for Expression of Interest went live in 2016 and was also fully allocated, leading to a close of the call in 2017.

As an evolution under this facility, new funds for a Serbia-specific Guarantee Facility were made available during 2017 and 5 financial intermediaries have been selected in an open call for expression of interest for financial intermediaries operating in Serbia.


Key facts and figures

  • For SMEs with growth potential in the Western Balkans in need of a loan, covering financing for investment and working capital

  • SMEs can obtain a loan of up to EUR 500.000

  • provided via financial intermediaries which are selected through a Call for Expression of Interest

  • EIF covers part of the risk incurred by the intermediary

  • Across all past and current editions of the Guarantee Facility, namely I, II and Serbia, EIF expects to generate an overall loan volume of over EUR 300 million

EU for Serbia - Financing for SMEs

In 2018 EIF launched the very first national Guarantee Facility under the WB EDIF. In collaboration with the EU and the Ministry of Economy, the “EU for Serbia – Financing for SMEs” instrument is specifically tailored to the needs of SMEs in the Republic of Serbia and notably follows recommendations from the EIB’s ex ante analysis into financing gaps for access to finance for SMEs in the country.

“EU for Serbia – Financing for SMEs” will provide guarantees to eligible Financial Intermediaries established and operating in Serbia to encourage them to build up new portfolios of SME transactions and thereby improving access to finance to SMEs in Serbia.


Financial intermediaries under the WB EDIF GF Serbia were selected on the basis of a Call for Expression of interest process which closed on 15.04.2019. Please find more information about the Facility and the contacts of the selected Financial intermediaries here: EIF_Serbia_brochure_1902[Serbian]

Guarantee Facility Agreements signed to date

Under the first allocation of funding the European Investment Fund signed a total of 6 First Loss Portfolio Guarantee (FLPG) Agreements with : • ProCredit in AlbaniaProCredit in Bosnia & HerzegovinaProCredit in KosovoUniCredit in SerbiaCKB in MontenegroRaiffeisen in Croatia These agreements have made a total of over EUR 118m available to SMEs in these countries, allowing them to benefit from reduced collateral requirements for new loans for investment and/or working capital.

Under the second allocation of funding the European Investent Fund signed a total of 5 First Loss Portfolio (FLPG) Agreements with : • ProCredit MacedoniaProCredit SerbiaProCredit KosovoRaiffeisen AlbaniaCKB Montenegro These agreements have made a total of EUR 107m available to SMEs in these countries, allowing them to benefit from reduced collateral requirements for new loans for investment and/or working capital.

Under the Guarantee Facility for Serbia allocation of funding the European Investment Fund signed a total of 5 First Loss Portfolio Guarantee (FLPG) Agreements with : • Banca Intesa Komercijalna banka • Procredit Raiffeisen UniCredit.  These agreements have made a total of up to EUR 180m available to SMEs in Serbia, allowing them to benefit from lower cost of borrowing and reduction of collateral requirements.

As an SME, how do I get a loan via the Guarantee Facility?

WB EDIF does not provide financing directly to SMEs, but works with a range of financial intermediaries in the region. Please address these (abovementioned) financial intermediaries directly in case you would like to obtain further information about your options for loan financing.

Did you know that WB EDIF also offers technical support services to help develop your business idea? Discover more on our dedicated page for entrepreneurs here

News & Events


1st Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) Business Forum

On 25 June 2021, the Western Balkans Enterprise Development and Innovation Facility (WB EDIF) held its first virtual Business Forum. The event was organized by the Enterprise Europe Network and supported by the European Commission and the European Investment Fund.

More than 130 participants from the entire Western Balkans region and beyond attended the Business Forum. Most of the attendees were Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), local intermediaries and entrepreneurs. The participants wanted to learn more about the existing and future funding opportunities provided by the European Commission and international financial institutions under the WB EDIF platform. The audience also had the possibility to hear about the experience from finance and advisory providers and fellow SMEs who had benefited from the available programmes.

The event was opened by a lively panel composed of representatives of the Enterprise Innovation Fund (ENIF) under WB EDIF, EBRD, Raiffeisen Albania bank and the Serbian SME BG Reklam. The speakers shared their experience from the pandemic and how the available opportunities could be utilized. The panellists shared a common opinion that the region has a very good potential, plenty of innovative ideas and creativity that can be translated into new business opportunities and growth, if the existing hurdles and market failures are adequately addressed. The general consensus was that, like and more than in the EU, the crisis in the Western Balkans can be also an opportunity to grow stronger and more resilient if companies find market niches, show creativity and innovation.

In the second part of the event an online matchmaking took place, where companies were able to meet finance and advisory providers under the WB EDIF. The meetings were bilateral and the overall feedback provided by attendees and intermediaries has been very positive.

A special thanks goes to the Enterprise Europe Network for organizing the event and to all attendees and entrepreneurs who contributed to making it a success.

Support to the private sector has been identified in the EU’s Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans as one of the Flagships. The development of a robust, innovative and competitive private sector is essential for the socio-economic development of the Western Balkans and its regional integration. This requires, in particular, increased investments in SMEs and their capacity to innovate, scale-up and grow


WB EDIF at the Poznan Summit 2019

The Western Balkans Summit Poznan 2019 took place on July 3-5, where the Ministers of foreign affairs, internal affairs and economy convened on July 4 and on the day after the heads of states and governments discussed key issues concerning Western Balkans. The European Commissioner for Enlargement, Johannes Hahn opened the Berlin Process for Western Balkan with the participation of the Forum for Business and Civil Society.

Read more

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Case studies


Kosovo* Case Study

A native of bablak in southern Kosovo*, Ejup Shumolli is the owner of a factory that produces high quality vinyl windows and doors. His products are unique because he uses Inoutic, a German material which is well known for its superb thermal insulation and moisture protection.

Find out how Ejup received financing for his company through WB EDIF’s Guarantee Facility

WBEDIF Succes Stories – Shumolli

Discover other means of support

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