Funding for business development
in disruptive circumstances

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Funding for business development in disruptive circumstances

The funding services are intended for mid-cap companies and SMEs (oy, oyj, ay, ky, osk) with 6-250 employees who operate in Finland and whose business is negatively affected by the coronavirus crisis. The funding will help businesses develop new products and working methods, but cannot be used to compensate for lost sales. Two forms of funding are available: preliminary and development funding. Businesses may not apply for both forms of funding simultaneously.

Who is the funding aimed at?

Yes

  • Finnish-based SMEs with 6-250 employees and mid-cap companies with a maximum turnover (own or group) of €300 million
  • Domestic and export companies
  • Almost all industries whose current business suffers from market and production chain disruptions caused by coronavirus

No

  • Private/Sole traders, freelancers
  • Large companies
  • Public organizations, foundations, or associations
  • Companies based in Åland
  • Primary production enterprises and private traders in the fields of agriculture, fisheries, and aquaculture    

How much funding can you get?

This funding constitutes a grant that does not have to be paid back. There are two types of funding, which, barring special exceptions, a company may only receive once. You are not permitted to apply for both forms of funding simultaneously. Development funding may be applied for without an initial preliminary project.

1) Preliminary funding for companies during business disruptions: maximum of €10,000. The grant for an exploratory/feasibility/preliminary study is 80% of the project's approved total costs. Up to 70% of this grant may be paid in advance. The funding provided by Business Finland has a maximum value of €10,000 (making the total project budget €12,500).

2) Development funding for companies during business disruptions: maximum of €100,000. The amount of funding for a development project is 80% of the project's approved total costs. Up to 70% of the amount of funding may be paid in advance. The funding provided by Business Finland has a maximum value of €100,000 (making the total project budget €125,000).  

What can the funding be used for?

1) Preliminary funding for companies during business disruptions. Companies can use the funding to investigate and plan new business, alternative subcontracting chains, and ways to organize production during and after the disruption caused by the coronavirus.

2) Development funding for companies during business disruptions. Companies can use the funding to carry out development plans, as identified in an exploratory study or otherwise in their operations, in order to improve their potential for success during and after the disruption caused by the coronavirus. These measures are solely intended for companies to create new product- or production-related solutions.

Examples of how funding can be used

A) The funding may be used for pilot tests of new business innovations within a company. Potential targets for development measures include, for example:

  • New services and products
  • New partnership and subcontracting models
  • New operating models for the organization of work and production and their relocation to Finland
  • Any other new measures that the company deems necessary in the present circumstances

B) Investigation of measures necessary to address disruptions in the supply chain, regardless of industry Typical areas of application for the funding include new solutions and operational models for the company, for example

  • Relocations due to the breakdown of international production chains
  • Repatriating production
  • Removing the causes of logistical disruptions

C) Tourism business development Typical uses of funding:

  • New accommodation and travel services for the company
  • Services directly associated with tourism that are directly affected by the business impact of reduced tourism
  • Service development and other business development

D) Development of services and business operations for the creative industries Typical uses of funding:

  • Services for companies in the copyright industries (e.g. video games, audiovisual arts, music) and event management services, and business development of art and culture services, to the extent that these are new to the company.

What may the funding not be used for?

  • Technical setting up of e-commerce. Alternatively, funding can be awarded for mapping out the implementation options for e-commerce, for example.
  • Marketing expenses
  • Cash flow shortages and operational salary costs
  • Straightforward implementation of existing activities
  • Costs of operational production
  • Offsetting losses caused by business disruptions.

Eligible costs

The funding uses a cost estimate (salaries + indirect personnel costs + purchased services + other costs). Eligible costs include the salary costs of the company's employees to the extent that the employees are engaged in exploratory or planning tasks. A maximum of 30% of the salaries paid, which have been approved for the project, will be accepted as indirect personnel costs. The funding can also be used to procure exploratory/feasibility/preliminary investigation and planning services as a purchased service. Eligible costs also include 20% of the total sum of salary costs and purchased services.

The funding falls under the de minimis exemption

The funding may be granted provided that the company has not exceeded its de minimis quota. The maximum permissible amount of de minimis aid is €200,000 over the current and two previous tax years. De minimis aid is granted by many public organizations, including Finnvera and ELY Centres. Read more about de minimis aid.    

Payment and reporting of funding

Before submitting the application

  1. Familiarize yourself with the guidance provided on this page and the terms and conditions of de minimis aid.
  2. If you cannot find the answer to your question, you can contact us by sending an email to poikkeusrahoitus (at) businessfinland.fi or by calling +358 (0)29 469 5800 (9 am - 3 pm on weekdays).

Apply for funding via the Online Service

  1. Registeras a Business Finland Online Service user. You do not need to apply to be your organization's primary user when you register for the service.

  2. Apply for fundingvia the Online Service. No attachments are required. The content of the proposed project should be described in a single text field in the application as follows:

    Preliminary study – The applicant must describe the areas it intends to investigate and plan and how the investigations and planning will be carried out (e.g. business operations, services, solutions, alternative supply chains, and the reorganization of work and production during the disruption caused by the coronavirus). The areas chosen for investigation and planning must be new to the company.

    Development project – The applicant must describe the areas to be developed in the project and how the development will be carried out (e.g. business operations, services, solutions, alternative subcontracting chains, new operating models for organizing work/production during the disruption). The areas chosen for development must be new to the company. Additionally, the applicant must describe how it believes the new measures being developed will be helpful in addressing the challenges faced by the company during the coronavirus pandemic.

  3. Business Finland will process your application before sending you a funding decision. Owing to the exceptionally high volume of applications at this time, we are not currently able to reliably estimate the time will take to process your application.

How to amend your application

You can amend/edit your application via the Online Services, so long at its current status is 'Under review'. It takes approximately five working days (Mon-Fri) from the date of receipt before the status of your application is set to 'Edit'. The application is temporarily locked during this time.

What do I do if my funding application is approved?

  1. Please read the monitoring and reporting guidelines when you have received your funding decision. The relevant terms and conditions for your project funding are available in the Online Service.

  2. At the end of the project, the company must report on the project's results and how its targets were achieved. You can find the reporting period for your project in your funding decision notification, which is available in the Online Service. Complete the final report for the projectin the Online Service.

Where does the funding come from?

  • Private/Sole trader - Municipalities and own bank
  • Small company (1-5 employees) - Finnvera, ELY-keskus and own bank 
  • SME (6-250 employees) - Finnvera, Business Finland and own bank
  • Mid-cap company (annual max turnover €300M) - Finnvera, Business Finland and own bank
  • Large company - Finnvera and own bank

NOTE! Applications received by Business Finland prior to 27 March 2020 will be assessed on the basis of the original terms and conditions: i.e. consideration will also be given to applications from companies employing fewer than six persons.

How to apply for funding

  1. Familiarize yourself with the guidance provided on this page
  2. Register and apply for funding via the Online Service
  3. Business Finland will process the application before sending you a funding decision

How to report on the conclusion of your project

  1. Please read the smonitoring and reporting guidelines when you have received your funding decision
  2. Once the project has been concluded you can file a report in the Online Service

Webinar: Funding options for businesses

Kasvu Open is hosting a webinar on business funding in exceptional circumstances at 9-10 am on 8 April 2020. The webinar includes guest speakers from Business Finland, Finnvera, and Nordea.

Registration

Ask us!

Before submitting the application

  • tel. +358 29 469 5800 (9 am - 3 pm)
  • Email

After submitting the application

Unfortunately, we are not able to respond to questions regarding the status of an application.