SBCI FAQs


What is the Future Growth Loan Scheme?

The Future Growth Loan Scheme provides long-term investment capital to SMEs and Small Mid-Cap businesses operating in most industry sectors, including agriculture. The Future Growth Loan Scheme is a long-term loan (7-10 years) that is offered by the SBCI with the support of the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the European Investment Bank and the European Investment Fund (EIF)

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What is the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland?

The Strategic Banking Corporate of Ireland was created by the Government of Ireland to offer low-cost credit to Irish SMEs, while driving competition and innovation in the Irish finance market. It is supported by many governmental and intragovernmental bodies, including the EU.

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How do I check if I am eligible?

For information about eligibility, see https://sbci.gov.ie/products/future-growth-loan-scheme

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Who can apply for SBCI Future Growth Loans?

The scheme is available to SME and Small Mid-Cap businesses. The business must be established and operating in Ireland. It may be structured as natural person(s) or a company.

SMEs have fewer than 250 employees and: annual turnover less than €50m or a balance sheet total less than €43m. Small Mid-Cap businesses have fewer than 500 employees.

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What loan purposes are permitted?

Loans can be used for long-term investment in:

  • machinery or equipment
  • research and development
  • business expansion
  • premises improvement
  • process innovation
  • people and/or systems

Some purposes are explicitly not permitted, including specific export operations, current expenditure relating to export activities and finance contingent upon the use of domestic products over imported products, including the distribution networks in other counties.

Other excluded purposes include finance towards:

  • Pure real estate development activity
  • Activities constituting pure financial transactions, e.g. purchase of shares
  • Activities forbidden by national or EU law
  • Undertakings in difficulty

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What restrictions are applied to State Aid?

SBCI Future Growth Loans are provided under De Minimis rules relating to State Aid, which arises in most cases because of discounted interest rates on the loans. Applicants must not exceed €200k State Aid in any 3-year period. Applicants must declare if they have received State Aid and the SBCI will calculate the additional State Aid relating to the application. Please note that the Loan amount is not the State Aid amount.   

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What interest rate will apply to the loan?

For loans up to €250k, a variable interest rate of 4.44% will apply. For loans of €250k or above, a variable interest rate of 3.44% will apply. Variable interest rates are subject to change over time.

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How do I apply for SBCI Future Growth Loans?

The first step is to confirm your eligibility through the SBCI website. When you receive confirmation of eligibility from the SBCI you can apply for a loan through the PTSB online application portal. You will be required to attach your eligibility letter to the application.

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What documents must be submitted with an application?

All applications must include a copy of the SBCI Eligibility Confirmation Letter. 

For loans of €250k or above, applicants must submit a business plan.

The standard documents required for loan applications are detailed in our Guide to SME Banking and include financial Statements for the past 3 years, confirmation that tax liabilities are fully paid up-to-date and, if a new customer, bank account statements for the last six months.

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What happens after application?

We will contact you with a decision relating to your loan or to request further information. If your loan is approved we will arrange a face-to-face meeting. At that meeting, we will gather any outstanding documents required to allow drawdown.

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What additional documents must be submitted before drawdown?

Borrowers must accept the credit facility agreement. New customers must complete a Mandate for Banking Services and must provide evidence of identity and address for the borrower and any beneficial owners, authorised signatories or internet users.

For partnerships, a copy of the partnership agreement will be required.

For companies, the Certificate of Incorporation and Company Constitution are required and a list of directors and beneficial owners including names, addresses, occupations and dates of birth.

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