Brexit Impact Loan Scheme (BILS)

A medium-term, lower cost scheme to fund working capital and investments for businesses, including primary producers, impacted by Brexit and Covid-19.

St. Francis Credit union is proud to be one of the only community lenders in Ireland to participate in the Brexit Impact Loan Scheme, enabling us to assist local businesses, including Primary producers, impacted by Brexit to access credit.

The Brexit Impact Loan Scheme is offered by the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) in partnership with the Department Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE), the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM), the European Investment Fund (EIF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Ireland is uniquely exposed to the effects of Brexit relative to its European peers. The Brexit Impact Loan Scheme (BILS) supports qualifying viable Irish businesses and primary producers (Agriculture/Fishing) by providing access to affordable medium-term finance enabling them to invest in their business.

LOAN PURPOSE

The Brexit Impact Loan Scheme is designed to address the economic impact of Covid-19, initially on those businesses that have also been impacted by Brexit. Loans can be used for:

  • working capital and investment loans to support SMEs and Small Mid-Caps (including primary producers) impacted primarily by Brexit.
  • refinancing of existing SBCI Brexit Loan Scheme facilities; or
  • refinancing of a non SBCI Brexit loan that was provided to support businesses impacted by Brexit.

SCHEME FEATURES

  • Loan amounts from €25,000 to a maximum of €1,500,000 per borrower (loan amounts are dependent on aid intensity and State aid thresholds)*.
  • Loan terms of between 1 year up to 6 years (loan terms are dependent on the purpose of the loan).
  • Loans are unsecured up to €500,000.
  • Amounts >€500,000 may be secured; however, a personal guarantee may only be sought in circumstances where it is required to capture supporting security, or where it is an uncollateralised personal guarantee and is limited to a maximum of 20% of the initial finance agreement amount.
  • Optional interest-only repayments or interest and / or capital moratoria (up to 90 days) are possible under the Scheme. These remain at the discretion of the participating finance provider. Otherwise, loans must have an amortising repayment schedule and not a bullet repayment profile.
  • Loans are available up to 31 December 2021.

* For Small Mid-Caps loan amounts from €25,000 to a maximum of €1.4 million.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA

SMEs/Small Mid-Caps must satisfy one of the following Brexit criteria.

  • Export products, services or raw materials to the UK (including Northern Ireland) equating to at least 15% of business turnover.
  • Import products, services or raw materials from the UK (including Northern Ireland) equating to at least 15% of business turnover.
  • The combined exposure (of 1 and 2 above) equates to at least 15% of business turnover.
  • The business is indirectly exposed to the UK (including Northern Ireland), i.e. transacts products, services or raw materials with an enterprise that is directly exposed to the UK (including Northern Ireland) equating to at least 15% of turnover.

HOW TO APPLY

Step 1 – The applicant must first submit an Eligibility Application Form to the SBCI to check if they are eligible for the Scheme. If the SBCI determines that the applicant is eligible, the applicant will be notified in writing and will be supplied with an eligibility reference number (eligibility code).

Step 2 – The applicant must provide this eligibility confirmation letter/code to St. Francis Credit Union when submitting their credit application.

Please note that the SBCI eligibility letter/code is not a guarantee of loan approval and does not impose any obligation on the on lender to provide a loan.

Approval of loans is subject to the scheme lenders’ own credit criteria, policies, and procedures.

The Brexit Impact Loan Scheme operates until 31 December 2021 or until the scheme has been fully subscribed.

WHO CAN APPLY?

Viable micro-, small, and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and Small Mid-Cap enterprises that meet the eligibility criteria.

SMEs are defined by the standard EU definition contained in Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC as enterprises that:

  • have fewer than 250 employees.
  • have a turnover of €50 million or less (or €43 million or less on their balance sheet).
  • are independent and autonomous, i.e. not part of a wider group of enterprises.
  • have less than 25% of their capital held by public bodies.
  • are established and operating in the Republic of Ireland.

A Small Mid-Cap is an enterprise that is not an SME but has fewer than 500 employees.

WHO CAN NOT APPLY?

An SME/Small Mid-Cap that:

  • does not satisfy the eligibility criteria (see section below).
  • is bankrupt or being wound up or having its affairs administered by courts.
  • is subject to or fulfil the criteria under domestic law for being placed in, collective insolvency proceedings.
  • in the last five years has entered into an arrangement in the context of being bankrupt or wound up or having its affairs administered by courts.
  • has been convicted of an offence concerning professional misconduct by judgement, fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organisation, money laundering or any other illegal activity where such illegal activity is detrimental to the European Union’s financial interests.

INTEREST RATES

The interest rate applicable to the loan is 5% (5.11% APR)

Representative Example: A loan amount of €50,000 over 72 months at 5% (5.11% APR). Monthly repayment of €805.26. The total cost of credit for the loan is €7,971.93

WARNING:  Loans are subject to approval. Terms and conditions apply. If you do not meet the repayments on your loan, your account will go into arrears. This may affect your credit rating which may limit your ability to access credit in the future.

EXCLUDED ACTIVITIES

Loans will not be provided to SMEs or Small Mid-Caps that have a substantial focus in any of the following sectors:

  • tobacco, if it forms a substantial part of the applicant’s primary financed business activities or a substantial part of the proposed financing.
  • gambling, casinos and equivalent enterprises or hotels hosting such facilities.
  • ammunition and weapons, military/police equipment, infrastructure or correctional facilities, prisons.
  • production or trade in pharmaceuticals, pesticides/herbicides, chemicals, ozone depleting substances and other hazardous substances subject to international phase-outs or bans.
  • production or use of or trade in hazardous materials such as radioactive materials (except for medical isotopes and materials for diagnostics and treatment in healthcare provision), unbounded asbestos fibres and products containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs); or
  • destruction of critical habitats.
  • For the full list of Excluded Activities, please check the SBCI website, www.sbci.gov.ie

CREDIT DECISIONS AND APPEALS

St. Francis Credit Union will make a credit decision to approve or decline your BILS credit application based on our agreed local credit policies and scheme conditions.

If declined, you have the option of:

  • using the St. Francis Credit Union internal appeals mechanism.
  • if the original decline decision is upheld, referring the decision to the Credit Review Office Finance