Mini-bonds: invest in Italy in order to help little and medium sized enterprises
Starting from a simple idea, “ mini-bond” were born in order to help all little and medium sized enterprises needing credit lines and a savings market looking for remuneration. It is about obligations issued by small and medium-sized companies of excellence ( even not listed on the exchanges but desirous of collecting capitals from the market) that can have in this way an additional financing channel for their business besides the one offered by banks.
They were introduced in 2012 by the Development Decree ( Decreto Sviluppo in Italian ) and have further been improved by other normative interventions trough the 2013 Decree “ Destination Italy ” ( Destinazione Italia in Italian ). Actually, they enjoy an appropriate fiscal treatment and the chance to be negotiated in a multilateral system and not only in e regulated market. Who wants issue mini-bonds must satisfy some dimensional and economic requirements : for example it must not belong to a bank or to a “micro-enterprise”, that is a company with less than 10 employees or with a turnover lower than 2 millions euro. Moreover, it is necessary that the same company has started its activities for two years at least, that has good financial statements and a good business project. Mini-bond’s main features are : duration must not be lower than 36 months, they must strictly be subscribed among professional investors ( both institutional and public investors that are qualified in accordance with MiFID/Consob), and they must have the chance to dematerialize titles and quotations on regulated markets and multilateral negotiation systems. In this way, even smaller companies can join market of obligations using both financial opportunities offered by the national system and the ones proposed by the most advanced European financial systems. Therefore, they can enter new financial resources which are complementary to the traditional bank channel.
In 2015 ( according to data offered by Milan Polytech’s Observatory), average rates of interest on debt instruments and on medium value of issues have decreased, at the same time number of small and medium-sizes companies applying for mini-bonds’ market is increased. As regards Italy’s market, the most represented sector is the manufacturing one while as regards geographic placement North companies prevail. Basic reasons why companies apply for mini-bonds’ market are : financing of internal growth, assets-liabilities restructuring, strategies of external development through procurements and finally increase of cash cycle’s circulating capitals. Moreover, in 2015 total amount of issued mini-bonds has exceeded 7 billions euro. For 2016, market’s estimations ( according to the portal www.minibonditaly.it) are positive and trend is expected to still remain the same of 2015 with issues whose value will be even lower and rates of interest will be more competitive than the actual ones. These estimates confirm mini-bonds’ important role as regards small and medium-sized companies’ access to credits considering that their bank credits still struggle to start in this market.
Therefore, thanks to mini-bond’s innovation, scenario of assets on which it is possible to invest enlarges ( according to a new estimation, Italian companies that can enter market of mini-bonds are 35 thousands abt) and institutional investors have the chance to participate in development of Italian small and medium-sized companies aiming to capabilities and entrepreneurial qualities of our Country.