The SME Restart Fund
Interview with Joan Algra, who works as a consultant for governments and entrepreneurs and one of the parties involved in realizing the SME Restart Fund.
The guest in this podcast is Joan Algra, owner of Baranka Consultancy and a consultant to governments and entrepreneurs and one of the parties involved in realizing the SME Restart Fund.
The Bbz scheme was established in 1964 and is a safety net for entrepreneurs. Unfortunately, there are some gaps in the scheme, because the Bbz has not been developed over the years. If an entrepreneur is not eligible for this scheme, for example because the person has a partner with an income above the level of assistance, the SME Restart Fund is the very last safety net. The MKB Doorstartfonds was founded in July 2014 by the province of Flevoland, and is specifically for entrepreneurs who live in Flevoland or who have their businesses here. Seven companies have now used this fund, ranging from a self-employed person to a company with 7 employees. The borrowed amounts (a personal loan) vary from € 25 to a maximum of € 6.000. It is a loan, so the amount must be paid back within 190.000 years.
Why does that fund only exist in Flevoland? In Flevoland, the Bbz cooperation, the socio-economic infrastructure around the entrepreneur, is very well organized. We actually need a national fund, which is why we would now like to roll it out nationally. We could make the fund bigger, for example through crowdfunding. In any case, it is important to establish a link between the Ministries of Social Affairs and Economic Affairs or perhaps through private initiatives. This will free up more money to lend to companies in need.