SmartCapital is an Economic Growth Program that facilitates Access to Capital and Smart Technologies to Entrepreneurs

SME’s are the engine of Albanian economy, representing 95% of total businesses and 75% of GDP. Yet they receive only 28% of total financing.

SmartCapital breaks some of the traditional barriers SME’s face, by providing access to Capital and Smart Technologies directly to Entrepreneurs. The 3-year program, which started in Sep 2016 is generating a measured $21 Million of new Investments Albanian economy. It will facilitate $15 Million of Financing and create 1100 new jobs.

SmartCapital is implemented by CBS through these five distinct services

1

Access to Capital for Agribusinesses

Agribusinesses are served through a team of experienced Business Advisors from of five locations in Tirana, Korca, Fier, Gjirokaster and Peshkopi

Advisors work closely with agribusinesses to upgrade technical and entrepreneurial capacities, while raising capital and implementing investments. Advisors work closely with clients to meet eligibility on a range of flexible and inexpensive Alternative Financing instruments. Investments Grants including AZHBR, IPARD, SARED and other EU-grant financing have become attractive to agribusinesses but hard to benefit due to complex requirements. CBS works closely with entrepreneurs to achieve investments and financing including a range of traditional options from banking sector.

2

Innovative Technology Platforms to Accelerate Trade and Financing

CBS believes strongly that smart use of technology can accelerate trade and finance for entrepreneurs

Building upon the successful experience of LORES (link), AGIS (link) and Agroweb (link) CBS under SmartCapital will continue to develop innovative products that intersect technology with trade and financing. Under the program, LORES will be expanded with non-Agro financing products while AGIS will be widened in scope to include economic and regional trends data-information. A new trade platform that that connects local wholesale suppliers with international markets will be launched at the end of 2018.

3

Environmental, Renewable and Efficient Energy Initiatives with Economic Benefits

The Environmental component of SmartCapital develops Environmental friendly and Clean Energy solutions that benefit urban and rural consumers

Such solutions range from renewable energy investments of solar and wind for agribusinesses to housing improvements for urban residents. All solutions are customized based on needs and resources of local communities and designed to deliver clear economic benefits to the customer. CBS was certified with Environmental Management System (EMS), an International Certification in June 2017. A Green Energy Financing program (currently under development) will provide technical assistance to green investments and connect consumers and entrepreneurs with bank and grant financing programs.

4

360 Degree Services to SME’s including Accounting, Marketing and Certification

SME’s often require substantial services to support their growth but market offers little assistance

SME’s often require substantial services to support their growth but market offers little assistance. CBS has an active relationship with over 400 clients, which may require a more specialized approach to growing. Services include Business Plans, Marketing, Accounting, Digital solutions and Certifications and other Advisory services. These services are customized for each client and designed to deliver immediate economic benefits and long-term growth.

5

Economic and Rural Development for Municipalities and Local Communities

SmartCapital is supporting municipalities with design and implementation of programs that generate employment and economic development to their local communities.

The program helps partner municipalities qualify for much needed financing budgets from IPA cross-border, EU or other government funded programs while helping with technical implementation. This component assists municipalities to grow capacities while adhering to regional standards. Cooperation programs with Macedonia, Kosovo and Greece are delivered through a range of regional partnership network.