Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
WE-101: Financing innovation and circular economy
Wednesday, 06/Sep/2017:
10:30am - 12:00pm

Session Chair: Shirin Wheeler, European Investment Bank, United Kingdom
Location: Salle de Conférences de presse
European Convention Center - Ground Floor - "Salle de Conférénces de presse"
Organized by: European Investment Bank  Moderator: Shirin Wheeler

Session Abstract

The circular economy (CE) can be described as a green giant on the rise, on account of its enormous potential to unleash sustainable growth and job-creation as well as the increasing traction it is gaining in the business world. Many businesses in different sectors have already started to tap into this potential, displaying a large variety of innovative business models. However, the transition to a CE is no certain success and needs to tackle a number of hurdles. Ensuring access to finance for circular businesses, throughout their different growth phases, is one of them.

The European Investment Bank (EIB), in close partnership with the European Commission (EC), national promotional banks and actors in the European finance sector, is already playing an important role in bridging existing financing gaps and catalysing investments into the CE.

The break-out session on “Financing Innovation and the Circular Economy” is organized by the EIB and features a series of short presentations by experts of the EIB and EIB partner institutions (EC, Rabobank), followed by a Q&A session in which the workshop participants can direct their questions to the expert panel.

More specifically, this session is intended to generate awareness and inform potential project promoters and other interested participants about:

- the EU’s general policy and the available funding sources and instruments for RDI and CE

- the EIB’s role in supporting the transition to a Circular Economy (CE), eligibility criteria and types of projects financed by the EIB

- the role of EU backed risk-sharing vehicles managed by the EIB (EFSI and InnovFin), the targeted sectors and specific instruments

- the role of the Circular Economy Finance Support Platform launched jointly by the EC and the EIB to improve the access to finance of CE projects

- the role of the EIB’s advisory services in bringing innovative CE projects and business models closer to finance

- the way the EIB collaborates with financial intermediaries to improve access-to-finance for smaller projects by SMEs and small MidCaps in specific sectors/thematic areas

- the particular view of an EIB partner bank and financial intermediary on the assessment of and lending to smaller CE projects by SMEs


- Lana Žutelija - Circular Economy Officer - European Commission, DG Environment

- Liesbet Goovaerts - Specialist on Innovative Industries – European Investment Bank

- Christian Schempp – Specialist on Circular Economy – European Investment Bank

- Arnold Verbeek – Innovation Finance Advisor – European Investment Bank

- Alexander Smits – Loan Officer, Intermediary Lending – European Investment Bank

- Richard Piechnocki – Sustainable Business Strategist – Rabobank (NL)

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