In the year 2000, my partners and I launched the PETERKA & PARTNERS law firm in Prague, Czech Republic. Over time we developed an ambitious idea - to create an integrated regional law firm, which at first seemed almost impossible. However, after years of dedication and hard work, we became a strong alternative to the global giants and local law firms active in the CEE region through their networks or best friends.
A new support instrument for medium-sized enterprises1 in Bulgaria is now in the pipeline. The support measure is structured in the form of a grant aiming to support such companies in overcoming the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. As in the similar support measure targeted to micro- and small-sized enterprises, this measure will be channelled through the Operational Programme “Innovation and Competitiveness”. The final conditions of the grant are expected to be disclosed around mid-June 2020.
Nevertheless, according to the conditions and forms of the support initially disclosed and circulated for public discussion, it seems that Bulgarian medium-sized enterprises registered prior to 1 January 2019 as per the Bulgarian Commercial Act or Cooperatives Act could receive a grant in the range of BGN 30,000 (approximately EUR 15,339) to BGN 100,000 (approximately EUR 51,129) but not more than 1% of the company’s net revenues for 2019. The deadline for application (i.e., filing of a project proposal) is still to be determined.
Branches of foreign legal entities are not entitled to receive this grant. Further, certain sectors are excluded as well, e.g., finance, and food and beverage manufacturing.
Companies must meet certain criteria to be entitled to this support measure. For instance, the net revenues of the companies in 2019 must be between BGN 3 million (approximately EUR 1.5 million) and BGN 50 million (approximately EUR 25.5 million) and must have a drop in revenues of 20% or more in a calendar month in the period from 1 February 2020 until the month preceding the month of application compared to the average monthly revenue in 2019.
Companies must use this support to cover certain expenses/costs which, among others, are actually completed and paid by the company after 1 February 2020 and up to the final date of the respective project and are reflected in the company’s accounting documentation. Companies may use this support for the payment of various expenses/costs such as costs for raw materials, supplies, consumables for production or services (of the companies), overhead costs, personnel costs (including gross remuneration and social security contributions), etc.
Certain costs, however, are explicitly excluded from the scope of the grant, e.g., leasing costs, costs related to bank loans, interest on loans and bank fees, taxation, personnel costs in case the company has received the “60/40” employment measure for the period covered by this grant, etc.
1 Under Bulgarian law: medium-sized companies are companies with (i) an average number of staff of fewer than 250 and (ii) an annual turnover not exceeding BGN 97.5 million (approximately EUR 49.850 million) and/or whose asset value does not exceed BGN 84 million (approximately EUR 42.948 million).
For any further information and assistance with respect to the above and any other Covid-19 related legal matters, please do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This document reflects the status as of May 27, 2020. This document is for informational purposes only and may not be considered a legal opinion or advice.