On October 10, Sparkasse Bank Macedonia started the first Step-Step Program designed to support and develop start-up businesses in Macedonia, after signing an agreement with the European Investment Fund (EIF) under the Employment Program and Social Innovation EU EAS. Approx. 1.5 million euros will be made available to start-up businesses in funds guaranteed by the EU-funded EU Employment and Social Innovation Program. The Bank will support the development of young ambitious entrepreneurs with the idea of creating their own business, which need money for further development.
“Step by Step” is the first accelerator program of this type, which aims to provide financial and social support to companies that are in the initial phase of starting their own business, with a possibility of lending in the amount of up to 25,000 euros. The program also offers a variety of packages of educational, financial and mentoring support.
Gligor Bishev, CEO and President of the Board of Directors of Sparkasse Bank Macedonia, stated: “As part of the 10-year long presence of Sparkasse Bank in Macedonia, we decided to offer credit support for fast and innovative small businesses. In this way, we want to provide access to funds for the young generation of entrepreneurs who will move the Macedonian economy in the future. The loan is provided by the European Commission through the European Union Employment and Innovation Program, which will take part of the risk for these loans. In addition to lending, this program offers entrepreneurs free training, advice and mentorships for starting and doing business. ”
“Sparkasse Bank Macedonia” will implement the “Step by Step” program in cooperation with Social Impact Lab and Start Up Academy through the implementation of 8 different educational modules, which will enable start-up businesses to develop a business plan and with the help of financial assets to continue the investment activity or to provide the necessary fixed working capital. The program is intended for companies registered less than 24 months ago and who need monetary and educational assistance, are in the start-up phase or under development and employ one or fewer than 10 employees. More details about the program and conditions for applying for a loan are available at www.sparkasse.mk.