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Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs
Press release15 February 2018Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Europe: a driving force for road hauliers

Transport Portas - Driver in front of truck



Financial intermediary: Franfinance

SME: Transports Portas

Sector: road transport

Number of employees: 6

Financing goal: purchase of a lorry unit

Transports Portas specialises in the road transport of containers throughout France, from the port of Le Havre. The company is based in Les Andelys in Normandy and has a fleet of 4 semi-trailers that can each haul 200 containers per year.

“In order to grow our business, one of our trucks had to be replaced,” explains Pascal Portas, the managing director. “To buy a new one, we sought funding from various banks. Fortunately, Franfinance agreed to lend us €90,000.” 50% of the amount was guaranteed by COSME, the European Union programme that helps SMEs access financing.

How was this transaction made possible, despite seeming potentially risky?

Franfinance, a subsidiary of the Société Générale group, is a financing company and one of its main activities is to finance the sale of equipment to companies.

Franfinance and the European Investment Fund (EIF) signed an agreement in April 2016. The goal was to enable Franfinance grant loans by benefitting from the COSME programme. This amounts to €250 million divided over 14,000 French small and medium-sized enterprises over a 3-year period.

This agreement is now yielding results, as Franfinance’s strategic programme manager Cécile Scalabre explains: “Between April 2016 and July 2017, we increased the volume of our funding for SMEs by 50%. Thanks to the support of the EIF and the guarantees provided by the COSME programme, SMEs that we certainly would not have granted funding to previously can now count on our financial support.”

Enterprises can contact the selected financial institutions in their countries to access financing:

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