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£100m EIB cash to support SME investment

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has agreed to provide £100m to support investments made by small and medium-sized businesses in the UK over the next two years.

The funding to Societe Generale Equipment Finance, which includes a matching contribution from the financial services group, is expected to help companies invest in transport, high-tech and industrial equipment by providing lower cost financing for up to eight years.

It will provide medium and long-term financial and an alternative to regular bank lending.

Eligible investment includes commercial vehicles and agricultural machinery, IT, office and medical equipment, production and packaging machines and construction equipment.

"Investment in new equipment is often essential to remain competitive and create new jobs.
"The EIB is committed to supporting small and medium sized companies and is pleased to work with Societe Generale Equipment Finance to achieve these shared goals in the UK. Financing that addresses the specific needs of small firms is even more important at a time of improving business confidence."

- Jonathan Taylor, EIB vice president

Giles Turner, managing director of Societe Generale Equipment Finance UK, added:
"We are particularly pleased to partner with the EIB so we can bring additional equipment finance facilities to small and medium size businesses across the UK. These businesses are a vital part of the economy creating wealth and jobs."