Hamburg expands coronavirus aid for SMEs and startups
The City of Hamburg has increased its Corona Recovery Funds for SMEs from EUR 800,000 to EUR 1.8 million maximum after the senate reached an agreement Tuesday (March 23, 2021). The recovery fund has been extended until December 31, 2021 and backs especially SMEs and startups that have run into difficulties as a result of the pandemic.
Threshold for companies facing extinction now lower
"Around 117 Hamburg-based companies have so far received assurances totalling EUR 41.6 million from the CRF. Twenty-three other applications for EUR 8.8 million are being examined," said Michael Westhagemann, Senator for Economics. Many companies are still reliant on aid, he added. The increased and extended CRF with slightly less strenuous conditions for applicants is reaching companies for which the Hamburg Stabilisation Fund (HSF) is not an option. Andreas Dressel, Senator for Finance Senator, termed the latest package "HSF light". Authorities are working at full speed on other programmes such as the Hardship Fund, the New Start Fund for the City and Centres and the rent subsidies for vacant buildings, he noted.
Over EUR 1.1 billion paid out in first year of pandemic
Ralf Sommer, Chairman of the Board of Hamburgische Investitions- und Förderbank (IFB Hamburg), which is responsible for paying out the aid, has drawn a positive balance a year after its launch. He pointed out: "We have helped businesses in Hamburg cope with the impact of the pandemic for a year now. We have paid out over EUR 1.1 billion to more than 94,000 applicants. Since the beginning of the year alone, we have granted around EUR 450 million in bridging aid."