WB EDIF first began providing financing to Kosovo via its Guarantee Facility instrument, which was deployed via Procredit Bank in 2013. 3 years later this instrument was topped up from the second round of EU financing under the Guarantee Facility owing to the success of the first round across the region.
The Fund Managers of ENIF and ENEF have also been actively sourcing deals in the country whereby ENEF made its very first investment in a Kosovar company, namely Viva Fresh; a supermarket retain chain operating across the country with plans for expansion further afield. A second investment was made into Santefarm: the largest pharmaceutical distributor in Kosovo with 30% market share and supplying generic and branded drugs, OTC and medical material to 400+ pharmacies throughout Kosovo.
On the Support Services side:
- The EBRD’s Advice for Small Businesses (ASB) has provided advisory support to 48 projects in total, in order to help SMEs in Kosovo grow, enhance competitiveness and bankability,
- Led by the OECD, the Small Business Act (SBA) assessment supported Kosovo in improving SME policy making and enhancing the capacity of its policy makers in addressing related challenges,
- The World Bank Investment Readiness Program “Pioneers of the Balkans” provided mentoring to entrepreneurs to help them get access to external sources of funding.
- An IP Toolkit was distributed to participants of the Workshop held in Pristina under the programme lead by EIB for support on intangible assets and intellectual property in the Western Balkans
- Under the World Bank’s EU-REPARIS programme, activities were organized on a regional basis with regular participation of the various stakeholders of Kosovo.
* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence
Financing for SMEs