USAID Launches Two New Projects to Help Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Access Sources of Finance

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Factoring and Business Ecosystem Project Launch
Factoring and Business Ecosystem Project Launch

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

On January 23, USAID launched two new projects -- the Business Ecosystem Project and Factoring Project -- that will support micro, small and medium enterprises access diversified sources of finance. The Business Ecosystem Project is a four-year activity that will endeavor to transform the competitiveness of micro, small, and medium enterprises in Macedonia by strengthening business services, finance, and market linkages to catalytically increase their growth, productivity and generation of employment. The project will work with traditional and alternative financial instruments and with micro, small and medium enterprises to ensure appropriate sources of financing are available and accessible for their business expansion. The Factoring Project is a three-year activity that will support small and medium enterprises by educating and informing them about alternative access to financial options. Factoring supports the growth of companies by providing quick access to finance and accelerating the flow of cash needed by companies so they can grow more efficiently.

“The difficulty with accessing finance is among the most commonly cited obstacles to business expansion in the country, especially for micro, small and medium enterprises. That is why in its 25 years in Macedonia USAID has consistently included an access to finance component in its economic development projects. We have always believed that access to different kinds of finance specifically tailored to micro, small and medium enterprises is an extremely important element in their development,” said USAID’s Director of the Office for Development Edward Gonzalez.

USAID has a rich portfolio of access to finance initiatives and legacy organizations in Macedonia. FULM and Moznosti are two microfinance institutions founded by USAID that serve microenterprises and start-ups that usually have no access at regular commercial banks. The Crimson Development Foundation, for the first time, introduced purchase orders and innovation financing. USAID funded investment funds managed by SPMG/ SEAF are the only local registered investment funds that look for investments in micro and small companies regardless of the sector. CEED supported the creation of the Business Angels’ Club that has already made investments in several Macedonian start-ups. USAID and the Macedonian Bank for Development Promotion created the export factoring service, and now we continue with Faktor Trust to promote it among domestic businesses as well. Finally, for over a decade, USAID has been guaranteeing bank and MFI’s loan portfolios to reduce the collateral requirements for special target groups, such as farmers, micro, small and medium enterprises.

Last updated: October 15, 2021

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