INNOVATION FINANCING VEHICLE

Start date: January 1, 2012                         
End date:   December 31, 2015  
Project budget:  $300,000            
Implementer:   Crimson Development Foundation (CDF)

Objectives

Establish and manage a specialized fund to support innovation and business start-ups, addressing the access to finance constraint faced by innovation-focused entrepreneurs.   


Components

  • Development of specialized financial products to support business innovation in Macedonia including purchase order financing, term loans; revolving lines of credit; and convertible debt.
  • Client/investment screening, analysis and selection. 
  • Fund monitoring and administration.  

To address the unique needs of innovators and start-ups, CDF has allowed for flexibility and creativity in the financing structures. For example, a combination of financing products might be utilized, or the loan terms and conditions may be tailored to fit the opportunity, sector, market, etc.


Achievements/Impact

In the first 18 months of operation, the IFV issued six loans totaling $210,000 for the following innovations:

  • Developing software that allows parents to easily set a variety of restrictions on the types of internet sites their children can access.
  • Financing a start-up company to manufacture and market energy-efficient bricks for construction.
  • Introducing a new processing line using agricultural waste (almond shells) to serve as fuel for the almond drying process.
  • Manufacturing egg and yogurt packaging from recycled paper.
  • Introduction of an environmentally friendly spray product packaging line of household cleaning products.
  • Design and production of flour-packing equipment that is smaller and less expensive, and produces packaging sizes demanded by the Balkan market.

Two of these companies are women-owned, one is minority-owned and two are start-ups. In addition to introducing these innovations to the market, IFV financing has resulted in the creation of 36 new jobs.


Sustainability/Legacy

Crimson Development Foundation is a USAID legacy institution. With this partnership, USAID is further strengthening their position on the Macedonian financial market as a short-term financing institution, at the same time introducing a new financial service targeted to innovation. This financing vehicle and the Innovation Center, a spin-off of the USAID Macedonia Competitiveness Project, will contribute to the USAID strategic focus on fostering business innovation as a key driver of economic growth.


Contact Information

Contact at USAID: Margareta Lipkovska Atanasov, AOR, mlipkovska@usaid.gov
Designated contact person: Lovre Ristevski, Manager, Innovation Financing Vehicle lovre.ristevski@crimsoncapital.org

Last updated: December 03, 2013

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