STOCKHOLM, Dec. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
The EIB and Clavister have signed a EUR 20 million financing agreement which will help the company to develop advanced cybersecurity software and hire new computer experts. The agreement was made possible by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe, launched by the EIB Group and the European Commission to boost the competitiveness of the European economy.
Digitalisation creates new opportunities for the way public institutions and businesses work, interact and communicate. But it also brings new risks: while ransomware attacks have increased by 300% since 2015, the economic impact of cybercrime rose fivefold from 2013 to 2017. 87% of Europeans regard cybercrime as an important challenge to the EU's internal security.
Clavister's products protect networks from hacker attacks and other digital security threats. The company is one of only three in Europe that feature in the top 20 cybersecurity businesses worldwide and successfully compete in a US-dominated market. In particular, the financing will support Clavister's growth ambitions. Investing in further product development and innovation are focus areas for staying at the forefront of technology. In addition, the company will substantially expand its sales and marketing presence to successfully take the products to market.
"Securing network and information systems in the EU is essential to keep the online economy running and to ensure prosperity", said EIB Vice-President Alexander Stubb, responsible for EIB operations in Northern European countries. "I'm proud of our support to innovative companies such as Clavister, as this deal will help foster digital know-how and skilled employment in Europe and make our digital lives safer."
"We're extremely pleased to have the EIB as our financing partner to help us attain our main corporate objectives of increased market share and customer satisfaction. The commitment shows not only an investment in our company, but one that grows the field of European cybersecurity in terms of importance and global competitiveness", stated John Vestberg, President and CEO of Clavister.
The deal with Clavister is special in that it makes use of the new EIB venture debt product, which combines the advantages of a long-term loan with a remuneration model based on the company's performance. Any such transaction helps to strengthen the borrower's economic capital. The Investment Plan for Europe allows the EIB to step up investment in highly innovative companies that previously would not have been eligible for EIB financing.
About the EIB
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. In 2016, the EIB provided Swedish projects with loans totalling almost EUR 1.9 billion.
About the Investment Plan for Europe
The Investment Plan for Europe focuses on strengthening European investments to create jobs and growth. It does so by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment and providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects. The Investment Plan is already showing results. The projects and agreements approved for financing under the EFSI so far are expected to mobilise EUR 256 billion in total investments across 28 Member States and support 540 000 SMEs.
On 12 December 2017, the European Parliament voted to extend and enhance the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the central pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe. The EFSI 2.0 Regulation is expected to enter into force on 1 January 2018. As well as extending the timeline from mid-2018 to the end of 2020, it will increase the investment target from EUR 315 billion to at least EUR 500 billion.
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