Background information about the Polish Union of Loan Funds (PZFP)
The Polish Union of Loan Funds represents the interests of loan funds from all over Poland on the national level, while also supporting their activities aimed at developing Polish regional economies and the sector of micro-, small and medium enterprises. The Polish Union of Loan Funds was established in 2010 as a replacement for the Polish Association of Loan Funds created in 2002 by representatives of fifty loan funds from different parts of Poland that operated as non-profit non-governmental organizations. The Union was registered with the National Court Register on December 20th 2010 in Kielce under the name “Polski Związek Funduszy Pożyczkowych” (Polish Union of Loan Funds). The mission of the Union is to create and develop a strong, independent system of loan funds in Poland to provide effective financing for the founding and development of micro-, small and medium enterprises.
Small (including micro-) and medium entrepreneurs (SMEs) may need financial assistance (loans or soft loans) to start, run and develop their businesses. In many cases they cannot obtain this assistance from the banking system. Relatively strict procedural requirements set by commercial banks force entrepreneurs to seek assistance from the loan fund system. The loans granted by loan funds prepare micro- and small entrepreneurs for later effective use of the financing provided by the banking system. Through their financing processes loan funds attempt to create a good lending history, which is vital for the future commercial bank financing of SMEs development in Poland. The ongoing growth of the Polish loan fund system (a system modelled after solutions implemented in Western countries, built to assist with the founding and development of SMEs) proves that the use of diverse SME financing systems, methods and tools is both justified and increasingly more effective. Growing interest in lending – in this context specifically in improved access to financing provided by non-profit NGOs to help SMEs and individuals who are founding their first businesses – facilitates the founding, running and expansion of businesses in Poland. The functioning of the Polish Union of Loan Funds is regulated by the Polish Law of Associations (Prawo o stowarzyszeniach) and the Union’s own bylaws. The organisation’s supreme authority is the General Meeting of Members, which appoints the Union’s Management Board. It is internally audited by the Audit Committee.
Polish Union Of Loan Funds - REPORT 2011
Loan funds in Poland, current status and development perspecitves, as of 31.12.2010
The history of loan funds in Poland goes back to the early 1990s, the period of the great economic transformation of Poland, when international support programs became available to entrepreneurs. During the following two decades the Polish loan services market was impacted by many significant events that have shaped loan funds into what they are today. The report “Loan Funds in Poland – Current Status and Development Perspectives, 2011” contains information and statistical data about that market gathered in the second half of 2009 and in 2010 – a time of significant changes in the organisation and functioning of the entities belonging to this group.