Madrid, December 01, 2020. COFIDES has backed the company IBARMIA to strengthen its position in China. To this end, it has provided a co-investment loan of 2 million euros taken from the Fund for SME Foreign Investment Operations (FONPYME) and COFIDES' own funds. This financing will be used to acquire 50% of its local partner in IBARMIA's Chinese subsidiary and to finance stock. The project's total investment is 4 million euros.
IBARMIA, a family-owned business specialising in the design and manufacture of high-tech machining centres, has been marketing its products in China for ten years, the world's largest consumer of machine tools. In 2017, it established a joint venture (50%) in China with a local partner for the manufacture of machining centres, for which it received the financial support of COFIDES. Once again, COFIDES is now lending its support to IBARMIA so that it can acquire all the shares of the company in the project and become the sole shareholder, in addition to financing its safety stock.
The COFIDES chairman, José Luis Curbelo, stated that "in this context of economic uncertainty, we need to strengthen our support for SMEs in order to consolidate their growth abroad." In his opinion, "it is also especially important to contribute towards the continued expansion of those companies that, like IBARMIA, have a high component of innovation and contribute to the use of resources in a sustainable way.”
The President and CEO of IBARMIA, Koldo Arandia, has pointed out that "tackling the purchase of 50% of the local partner has been an enormous challenge for IBARMIA during these times of crisis and uncertainty derived from the coronavirus pandemic, and the support of COFIDES has been critical in order to take on the operation. China is a strategic market for our company and currently the main source of our contracts. We have felt that COFIDES has been a close and supportive partner, willing to help.”
CONTRIBUTION TO THE SDGs
This investment contributes significantly to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8, decent work and economic growth. The company has created 30 jobs in China and the staff has received training courses in both China and Spain, facilitating the specialisation of staff in a sector with a high technological and innovative component.
It also promotes compliance with SDG 9, industry, innovation and infrastructure; the machinery developed by IBARMIA stands out for its high degree of automation and efficiency, contributing to the modernisation of the industry and the more efficient use of resources. The high precision of the manufacturing process contributes to the reduction of waste and thus to the promotion of a cleaner and more sustainable industry.
With headquarters in Azkoitla (Gipuzkoa, Spain), IBARMIA is a family-owned SME that mainly carries out its activity in the machine tool sector, providing high added-value solutions to the needs of its customers. IBARMIA is firmly committed to innovation with a customer-centric approach and is present in those destinations with the greatest potential for consumption (European Union, USA, China and India). It has an ambitious strategic plan that guides the company's daily activities to minimise unproductivity, risks to people and the impact on the environment.
COFIDES is a state-owned company which has been offering financial support to Spanish companies investing abroad. COFIDES is accredited to the European Union (EU) to manage funds coming from the EU budget, allowing the structuring of transactions with a high impact on development. COFIDES is also accredited to the UN’s Green Climate Fund (GCF) and can therefore structure operations on climate change mitigation and adaptation. Moreover, COFIDES is the exclusive manager of FIEX and FONPYME funds on behalf of the Secretariat of State for Trade attached to the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism and also supports AECID in managing FONPRODE funds. COFIDES’s shareholders include Banco Santander, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA), Banco Sabadell and CAF-Development Bank of Latin America.