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- This initiative will help in the process to reorient, reactivate and digitalise small businesses through training, advice and mentoring.
- It provides financing by granting a social microcredit facility of up to €5,000 to micro-businesses and the self-employed
- The €25 million programme forms part of the Endesa Public Responsibility Plan presented at the outbreak of the pandemic
Endesa and the Youth Business Spain Foundation (YBS), a not-for-profit organisation with which it has been collaborating for four years, have launched a nationwide programme to help small businesses and the self-employed to cope with the economic crisis caused by COVID-19. The programme assists micro-businesses with the process of reorienting, reactivating and digitalising their businesses through advisory plans and social microcredits up to a maximum of 5,000 euros. their businesses through advisory plans and social microcredits up to a maximum of 5,000 euros.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented health emergency in our country and led to an economic emergency, brought on by the disruption of business activity in many sectors. According to the report on the business situation in Spain caused by the COVID-19 crisis drawn up by Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Spain (GEM), “standstill” (affecting 40% of business activity) and “uncertainty” (58% of businesses claim to be suffering from it) are the words that best describe the impact of COVID-19 on the business fabric.
Endesa and the YBS Foundation have launched an initiative to help micro-businesses and the self-employed in this country to curb the impact of the crisis and plan the continuity of their businesses, while at the same time maintaining employment. A total of 600 people are to receive training and advice, 400 of whom will be assigned a mentor (an entrepreneur or executive) to support them during this process. €400,000 will be granted in social microcredits to small businesses all over Spain.
In addition, 100 particularly vulnerable people will benefit from direct aid of €300 to €500 to reactivate their business activities, focusing on helping them with digitalisation (equipment, licences, websites, etc.), the purchasing of initial stock to reactivate the business, tax expenses and the purchasing of PPE and prevention and disinfection products.
The programme targets business owners in difficulty owing to COVID-19 who will be given training in business digitalisation and personal skills development to handle complex situations, along with advice from business experts. They will also be assigned a mentor to support and guide them through the process. With these social microcredits, people with difficulties in accessing traditional financing channels will be given access to direct financing.
The programme forms part of the 25 million euro Endesa Public Responsibility Programme launched at the outbreak of the pandemic, which is now in its second stage of development. After dealing with the country's health needs, the Plan is now focusing on the economic emergency that is particularly affecting the most vulnerable groups and households with the greatest difficulties.
Profile of the beneficiaries
The potential beneficiaries are people with up-and-running businesses that are experiencing difficulties due to COVID-19, preferably belonging to vulnerable groups: young people up to 35 years old, those in the 55 to 65 age bracket, women, immigrants, members of minority ethnic groups and people with reduced mobility, etc. The aid targets small businesses, mainly self-employment projects, single-person or two-partner companies with up to five employees.
Microcredits and advice
A social microcredit is a social and economic integration instrument that is accompanied by non-financial services such as training, technical assistance and mentoring. The maximum amount that can be granted is €5,000 at a nominal rate of 0%. It can be returned in up to 24 monthly instalments.
The non-financial services offered by the programme include:
- Webinars on the digitalisation of economic activities. Training is given in digital skills by designing a tailor-made itinerary based on each beneficiary's needs and starting point. Sessions on design thinking , e-commerce, influencer marketing, SEO and SEM positioning and video design and image editing are also included.
- Personal skills development seminars will be given to help owners of SMEs to adapt successfully to a situation of maximum uncertainty. In the last three years, over 1,200 people have participated in this type of training, which includes workshops such as "Learning to seek opportunities", "Developing persistence" and "Knowing how to take risks".
- Mentoring: this immediate intervention tool consists of assigning a mentor selected from experienced entrepreneurs and senior executives who will offer direct, individualised advice and support, and help the beneficiaries of the programme to make decisions and implement an action plan. Since 2013, the YBS mentoring programme has benefited over 2,000 small businesses, resulting in higher revenues, job creation and a five-year survival rate of 87%, way above the national average of 41%.
- Aid: an emergency fund consisting of direct non-reimbursable economic aid (from €300 to €500 per beneficiary) to promote business reactivation among the most vulnerable.
Endesa is the leading electricity company in Spain and the second biggest in Portugal. It is also the second largest gas operator in the Spanish market. Its integrated business model ranges from generation to sales, while also providing, through Endesa X, value-added services aimed at decarbonising energy use in homes, companies, industries and Public Administrations. Endesa is firmly committed to the UN SDGs and therefore decisively promotes the development of renewable energies, the electrification of the economy and Corporate Social Responsibility. We also work in the latter area through the Endesa Foundation. We have some 10,000 employees. Endesa is a member of Enel, the biggest electricity group in Europe.
About Youth Business Spain (YBS)
Youth Business Spain is a national foundation and a member of the Youth Business International (YBI) network. We promote decent work and economic growth by helping vulnerable people to launch and consolidate their business ideas. In Spain, YBS provides its support services to entrepreneurs through an alliance between not-for-profit and independent entities committed to supporting the self-employment of the most disadvantaged: Tomillo Foundation, Gaztenpresa, Autoocupació, Gypsy Secretariat Foundation, Ronsel Foundation, Maimona Foundation, Arrabal Association, Aprofem Association, You create and Treball Solidari. Visit www.youthbusiness.es