Again in 2015 the Intesa Sanpaolo Group concluded and strengthened important agreements with trade associations for the sustainable growth of businesses.
The relationship with Confindustria Piccola Industria is currently regulated by the 5th Agreement signed on 17 July 2014, expired on 31.12.2015, recently extended until September 2016. "Una crescita possibile” (Possible Growth), aims to invest in the growth potential of Italian entrepreneurship, encouraging dynamism, growth and competitiveness. The partnership envisaged the allocation of a further 10 billion euro, already exceeded by actual disbursements, in addition to 35 billion euro allocated under the previous agreements, as well as a programme focusing on measures targeting growth, innovation and start-ups, exports and internationalisation, supported by the services and business opportunities that Intesa Sanpaolo, as Official Global Banking Partner of Expo 2015, offered corporate customers for the entire duration of the event.
Among the various elements leading to the signing of this agreement, from the qualitative factors of credit and their inclusion in the rating model, from the "Progetto Filiere" up to training initiatives to promote internationalisation and digitisation, last September a specific addendum was signed in Florence on innovation with regard to the opportunities made available to SMEs through the Investment Compact which envisages:
- conducting a survey focused on disseminating, through the production system, a greater awareness of the policies for innovative SMEs, to identify best practices to promote locally and help companies to better "communicate” the innovation achieved, thus increasing the audience of SMEs that can benefit from the facilities by subscribing to the special Section of the Companies' Register;
- sharing with Confindustria the "Tech Marketplace" Web platform, developed by Intesa Sanpaolo to promote contact between innovative firms - including start-ups - and facilitate the matching between demand and supply of innovation (see chapter "Intellectual and Infrastructural Capital" @).
Among the tools developed to encourage dialogue between corporate customers and the Bank, amongst others, the “Modello diagnostico di autovalutazione finanziaria” (Financial Self-Assessment Diagnostics Model), an online tool available to all Confindustria members, which provides companies with a personal risk profile to identify the best growth strategies, is still available. Since its launch in October 2010, more than 7,800 users have accessed the diagnostics model, with 244 new users in 2015.
The Italian Banking Association (ABI) Credit Agreement, aiming to guarantee the availability of sufficient funds to SMEs which, despite reporting liquidity tensions, indicate positive prospects for development or going concern, was terminated in June 2015. This agreement allowed access to certain benefits with loan suspension and extension measures and two targeted credit lines: “Progetti Investimenti Italia” (Investment Projects in Italy) dedicated to SMEs which, despite the economic crisis, have continued to make new investments, and “Crediti della Pubblica Amministrazione” (Credit of Public Administration), through which participating banks made specific credit lines available for the provision of advance or discounting transactions. From early July, the new "2015 Credit Agreement", signed on 31 March 2015 by the Italian Banking Association and the main trade associations, replacing the previous agreement in force became operational. The agreement provides for three initiatives:
- "Imprese in ripresa" (Recovering companies), with the possibility for all SMEs "in good standing" to suspend principal payments on their loans for a maximum of twelve months and extend the amortisation schedules of their mortgages and due dates of their short-term loans and credit for farm activities.
- "Imprese in sviluppo" (Developing companies), in support of the entrepreneurial projects of SMEs;
- "Imprese e P:A:" (Companies and the Public Administration), for the factoring of companies' claims on the Public Administration.
With reference to both Agreements, overall in 2015 the transactions suspended numbered 4,106 for a total residual debt of 1.414 billion euro and 169 million euro in deferred debt. For the extensions, the accepted applications were 455 for a total residual/deferred debt of 112 million, while recapitalisation loans were 35 for a total amount of over 7 million euro. In 2015 Intesa Sanpaolo disbursed 865 loans through the initiatives “Progetti Investimenti Italia” and “Imprese in sviluppo”, for over 300 million euro.
To support the real economy of the country, the Business Finance Hub has signed two new agreements with the European Investment Bank making available 650 million euro of funds. The first, worth 150 million euro, to finance investment projects of SMEs, Mid-Cap companies, consortia and business networks throughout the country active in the agri-food sector. The second, worth 500 million euro, to finance investment projects and to support the permanent need for working capital related to the production activities of SMEs belonging to all productive sectors.