Liquidity decree in Italy

Liquidity decree in Italy

Liquidity decree: guide to guaranteed loans, rules, amounts and access limits.

The guarantee starts from 70%. It will be 100% only for mini-loans up to 25 thousand euros. Two accesses: the public company Sace (part of the Cdp hub) and the Guarantee Fund for SMEs.

Coronavirus, liquidity decree: three-way guarantees for SMEs

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State guarantees on bank loans are the central part of the Liquidity decree. Two accesses are provided: the public company Sace (part of the Cdp center), especially for larger companies, and the Guarantee Fund for SMEs (Mediocredito Centrale and Ministry of Development) which aims more at businesses with up to 499 employees. Loans guaranteed under the new rules are not yet operational: authorization from the EU, updating of some internal procedures of banks and Sace and updating of the IT platform of the Guarantee Fund are still required. It may take a few days.

Sace:

Three ranges are expected:

  • State guarantee covers 90% of the loan for companies with less than 5 thousand employees in Italy and value turnover up to 1.5 billion euros;
  • 80% guarantee for companies with turnover between 1.5 and 5 billion euros or with more than 5 thousand employees in Italy;
  • 70% coverage for companies with turnover over 5 billion euros.

In any case, the amount of the guaranteed loan cannot exceed the greatest of these two elements: 25% of 2019 turnover or twice the company’s personnel costs related to 2019, as shown in the financial statements or certified data (if the company was born after 31 December 2018, reference is made to the expected personnel costs for the first two years of activity).

Constraints

The beneficiary company (or other companies of the same group) will not be able to distribute dividends or repurchase its shares during 2020. The company will then be called upon to undertake the commitment to manage employment levels through union agreements. It must also comply with “made in Italy” clause i.e. it must use the financing only for activities located in Italy.

Costs and duration

Loans should be repaid in six years, with a pre-amortization up to two years. Commissions are differentiated. For SMEs, in relation to the guaranteed amount, they are equal to 0.25% the first year, 0.5% the second and the third, 1% from the fourth to the sixth years. For larger companies, on the other hand, they are 0.5% of the guaranteed amount in the first year, 1% in the second and the third, 2% from the fourth to the sixth years.

Procedures

For the first range, below 1.5 billion in turnover, the procedure is as follows: request to the bank, which in the event of a positive resolution requires the guarantee from Sace. The latter processes the request and issues a loan code, which is then provided by the bank. For larger companies a more complex procedure is expected: a Mef-Mise decree will be required.

The Guarantee Fund:

In this case the basic guarantee will be 90%, for a maximum guaranteed amount of 5 million euros. The loans will have a maximum duration of 6 years with a limited amount. In other words, the amount of the loan cannot exceed twice the beneficiary’s annual salary expenditure for 2019 or for the last year available. But it rises to 100% for loans up to 25 thousand euros, and in any case within 25% of revenues, destined not only to companies with up to 499 employees but also to self-employed workers. For this category of loans there is no assessment of creditworthiness, a self-certification on revenues is sufficient. The refund is in six years and the repayment begins no earlier than two years.

For those with revenues of up to 3.2 million

Moreover, the Guarantee Fund provides 90% guarantee, which can reach 100%, if the further 10% is guaranteed by private credit consortia (Confidi). In this case, only companies with up to 499 employees with revenues of up to 3.2 million can access the loan. And in any case within 25% of the turnover, therefore within a loan of 800 thousand euros. A self-certification is required to certify the damage from Covid-19.

Costs and duration

For all Fund operations, until the end of 2020, access is free. For loans up to 25 thousand euros, however, an interest rate, albeit low, is provided related to the Rendistato with an increase of 0.2% (a value between 1.2 and 2% can be estimated). In the case of the second category, for companies up to 3.2 million in revenues, the text does not provide for “a cap” i.e. minimum rate or maximum duration of the pre-established repayment.

Procedures

As said, for loans up to 25 thousand euros, there will be no assessment of the creditworthiness of the beneficiary. For the other categories, loans at 90% or loans at 90% State + 10% Confidi, there will still be a banking investigation even if it is lightened. In fact, only the economic-financial structure of the company will be assessed, with the exclusion of the performance assessment, which is the one relating to the last six months and therefore the one that may be most affected by the ongoing crisis.

 

 

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