Business Finland provides grants and loans to companies for research and development projects. The aim is to foster the development of internationally competitive products, production methods and services.
Business Finland makes decisions on the granting of loans or grants on the basis of applications. Instructions for drafting the application and for the application process can be found on Business Finland’s website.
The State Treasury is responsible for measures following loan decisions, for example payment transactions and supervision and recovery of loans.
The maximum loan period for a product development loan (R&D loan) is 10 years. The first five years can be a period of grace before repayment of the principal begins.
The interest rate is three percentage points below the base rate of interest; notwithstanding this, the minimum rate is 1.0 per cent. The loans are usually granted with no requirement of collateral.
The loan terms are described in more detail in a loan note prepared by the State Treasury. A copy of the loan note template can be requested by e-mail from yritysluotot(at)statetreasury.fi.
Taking out and paying back loans
Once Business Finland has made a decision on granting a loan, the State Treasury will send the applicant instructions on how to take out the loan.
Signing the loan note
Once we have received Business Finland’s decision on granting a loan, the State Treasury will send the loan note with instructions via e-mail.
The borrower must sign the loan note at a notary public at the Digital and population data services agency (DVV). Appointments can be booked via the agency’s electronic appointment system.
The original loan note, signed at the notary public, along with its appendices must be returned to the State Treasury’s information desk in our premises or by post.
In addition to the signed loan note, the borrower must provide the State Treasury with the following information:
- an original or electronic extract from the trade register that is no more than three months old
- a certified extract or certified copy of the minutes of the company’s Board meeting at which the decision to take out a loan was made
- name and contact details of the person managing issues related to the loan (address, telephone numbers and e-mail address)
- invoicing address.
The State Treasury shall pay the first instalment of the loan as an advance after the loan note has been signed in the State Treasury or at a Notary Public and all the necessary documents have been supplied to the State Treasury.
The borrower must report on the progress of the project to Business Finland, who will then decide on paying the following instalments based on these interim reports and inform the State Treasury of the amount to be paid. The State Treasury will pay the amount specified in the decision to the borrower.
For each year of a R&D loan, the State Treasury will request payment of the annual interest and the year’s repayment instalment on the principal on the date on which the first part of the loan was drawn.
Change of account number
You must inform Business Finland of any changes to your account number.
Changes in loan terms
If your project is delayed, it fails or its results cannot be used in business operations, you can request Business Finland to amend the loan terms.
The primary solution in these cases is to offer the debtor an extension to the repayment period, but in some cases the unpaid principal and interests can be converted completely or partially into a grant.
Loan terms may only be changed on application by the debtor. Applications must be submitted in good time before the next installment is due so that Business Finland can take the upcoming installments into consideration when making its decision on changes in loan terms. If the application is submitted after an installment has fallen due, the debtor has to pay the overdue installments according to the original loan terms. Instructions for applying for an amendment to loan terms can be found on Business Finland’s website.
Short-term payment plans for overdue installments may be agreed upon with the State Treasury. The appeal process will not affect loan repayment, and any arrears will accrue the normal penalty interest according to the loan terms.
Changes in contractual relationship
Business Finland must be notified in writing of any corporate restructuring (mergers, divisions, etc.) and substantial changes in ownership. Business Finland shall notify the State Treasury whether it will support or oppose the proposed business reorganisation.
The company may not assign the project to a third party without permission from Business Finland. If the company intends to sell the business of which the project is a part, Business Finland must be notified of the sale in writing well in advance. If Business Finland grants permission for the transfer, the new borrower must submit to the State Treasury a Trade Register extract and the Board of Director’s decision to accept responsibility for the loan. The new borrower must then sign the transfer agreement either digitally in the Visma Sign system used by the State Treasury or in the presence of a Notary Public at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. The Agency’s online booking system must be used to make an appointment with the Notary Public.
If the transfer agreement is signed in the presence of a Notary Public, the borrower should first contact the State Treasury, however, allowing us to mail the transfer agreement to them for signing. The original agreement, signed at the Notary Public, along with its appendices must be returned by post to the State Treasury.
Business Finland is entitled to cancel a funding decision if the sale would lead to a situation where the continuation of the project can no longer be considered reasonable. After receiving a cancellation decision, the State Treasury will recover all loans.
E-service for loan customers
Loan customers can check their loan statements and plans in the e-service for loan customers.
The customer may also choose to give access rights to its accounting firm so that the firm can retrieve loan statements for the financial statement from the e-service.