The Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO) is a development financing institution backed by the Belgian state. Its mission is to support the private sector in developing countries by providing long-term financing for private enterprises and microfinance institutions. BIO has a very wide range of financial tools, including direct investment in private enterprises by way of equity or loans.
BIO’s loan programme is available to local enterprises and foreign companies with a local foothold registered and active in eligible countries. BIO prefers funding companies active in agriculture and agro-processing. Compared to local commercial bank financing, BIO’s loans are concessional:
- maturity up to 10 years
- grace period (interest only) up to 3 years
- 100% collateral only
- Technical Assistance (TA) grant of up to 10% of the loan amount.
The interest rate is proposed by BIO on a case-by-case basis but relatively moderate on USD and EUR loans and high on local currency loans, comparable to what local banks charge.
BIO’s loan programme may be relevant for you if all of the following conditions apply:
- the company for which you seek the loan is not a start-up
- the financing sought from BIO is in the range of € 1.5 – 3 million
- the shareholders’ own financing, including recent investments in the company, matches or exceeds the funding sought from BIO.
We have successfully facilitated BIO loan application for several clients and have excellent relations with BIO officers. After reviewing your case to see if indeed BIO loan financing is feasible, we can assist you on the basis of a modest fixed fee to be increased by a success fee payable in case the loan application is approved. We develop or restructure your business plan, review all documentation for presentation to BIO and assist you in addressing all questions BIO raises in the course of due diligence. The initial procedure includes a visit that we undertake with you to BIO’s offices in Brussels. Following positive review of the application and your agreement to BIO’s preliminary term sheet, BIO performs a due diligence including a visit by one of its officers to your company.
The loan application process until first disbursement takes a minimum of 6 months but generally longer. If indeed the loan application is successful, we subsequently prepare the application for the TA grant, which may be used to strengthen your business by hiring experts, training of staff, certification, etc.
|Burkina Faso||India *||Guatemala|
|Congo (DRC & Rep)||Nepal||Paraguay|
*) only for very high development impact projects