Monika Tuzimek
Monika Tuzimek Partner

Overview of the premises of the „anti-crisis shield” – changes in the functioning of the polish development fund (PFR)

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On the night of 27-28 March 2020, the Polish Parliament adopted a law extending the powers of the Polish Development Fund (PFR) so that it can better support entrepreneurs in the face of the coronavirus epidemic.  This is one of the acts from the „anti-crisis shield” package, namely an amendment to the act on the system of development institutions prepared by the Ministry of Development.

The act provides for the extension of financing possibilities and the scope of PFR activities so that the Council of Ministers can entrust it with the implementation of the programme for providing financial support to entrepreneurs in relation to the crisis situations caused by COVID-19, thus extending the current range
of the PFR activities.

Below we present the main changes in the functioning of the PFR introduced by the amendment being part of the „anti-crisis shield” package.

PFR TASKS

The tasks of the PFR, which so far have involved providing financing
to entrepreneurs
, have been extended to include in particular crisis situations, including those caused by the spread of the coronavirus infectious disease.

In addition, a new task was introduced, defined as preventing or mitigating the effects of crisis situations, including the effects of the COVID 19 pandemic,
by providing funding or repairing/paying for damage or loss caused by these situations

PFR FINANCING SOURCES

Depending on the objectives, the PFR may be financed from the Minister’s subsidy for regional development, earmarked subsidies from the state budget and funds from the European Union budget, treasury securities (for the increase of the PFR share capital).

Additionally, the State Treasury may grant a guarantee or surety for the repayment of liabilities arising from loans taken or bonds issued by the Polish Development Fund.

In the original Act on PFR, the maximum limit of financing from the state budget was PLN 300 million (for 2019-2028). The amendment to the act modified this amount to PLN 11.7 billion (2020-2029), including PLN 6.7 billion in 2020 and PLN 3 billion in 2021.

WHO WILL BENEFIT FROM PFR FINANCING

According to the existing rules, PFR is to provide funding to entrepreneurs,
in particular micro, small and medium-sized businesses
(see the table below).

An entrepreneur is an entity conducting business activity, regardless of its legal form. As a rule, the programmes implemented so far by PFR were addressed to all categories of business entities (large enterprises, SMEs, start-ups, foreign companies and local governments) and we assume that a similar principle will apply under aid programmes related to COVID-19.

Entity category Average yearly employment Annual turnover net (EUR) Total balance sheet assets (EUR)
Micro-entrepreneur < 10 employees <  2 million <  2 million
Small entrepreneur < 50 employees <  10 million <  10 million
Medium-sized entrepreneur < 250 employees <  50 million <  43 million
Large enterprise > 250 employees >  50 million >  43 million

NOTE: In order for an entrepreneur to be qualified to a given group, the conditions of employment and of the annual turnover or the sum of balance sheet assets must be met jointly.

Financing may be allocated, among others, for such categories as: investments, support of entrepreneurs, environmental protection, R&D, training and consulting, recruitment and employment of disadvantaged and disabled employees, prevention or repair of damage caused by natural disasters, other crisis situations, including the spread of COVID-19, and other undertakings crucial for the development of the state.

Financing is provided by the PFR directly or through capital funds in the form of:

  • taking up or acquiring shares, stocks, subscription warrants, bonds, receivables and joining partnerships,
  • granting loans, guarantees and sureties.

GOVERNMENT AID PROGRAMME IN VIEW OF COVID-19

The amendment to the act contains a provision allowing for creating a government programme for granting financial support to entrepreneurs in view of COVID-19

The programme will be financed with funds transferred from the state budget, with the total value of funding planned for 2020 to amount to PLN 1.7 billion and will be transferred through the Industrial Development Agency S.A. in the form of an issue of treasury securities.

IN PRACTICE

The aim of the adopted changes is to expand the catalogue of forms of granting financing to entrepreneurs by, i. a., enabling the acquisition of shares or stocks of companies or the purchase of bonds, increasing the availability of the PFR support, and eventually adding to the budget handled by the PFR.

In order to benefit from the PFR support, one should apply to one of the programmes published on the PFR’s website (https://pfr.pl/) or to the institution directly responsible for the program. Depending on the form of support chosen, it is possible, among others, to:

  • obtain financing with a de minimis guarantee (in most banks),
  • have capital financing granted by taking up and acquiring minority shares,
    as well as bonds,
  • obtain loans and credits on preferential terms directly from the PFR funds.

Alert available also in PDF version


Contact out experts

Entrepreneurs interested in the PRF support should be prepared to meet formal requirements, including submitting analyses of their economic and financial situation, liquidity forecasts, short and long term budgets, which may pose a challenge given the time pressure and difficult operating conditions due to the coronavirus.

The team of TPA Poland’s advisors and Baker Tilly Woroszylska Legal’s lawyers combines all the required competences for this type of consulting: financial analysts, legal and tax advisors and auditors.

TPA Poland

  Monika Tuzimek
Partner
Audyt & Business Advisory
  Krzysztof Horodko
Managing Partner
Audyt & Business Advisory
  Maciej Krokosiński
Associate Partner
Audyt & Business Advisory
  Tomasz Manowiec
Director
Corporate finance

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