The FAE intervenes throughout the life cycle of the enterprise, and in all its fields of business through 5 services:

  • Loan Guarantees

  • Investing in equity (minority stakes as co-investor)

  • Factoring

  • Mandates for audits, expertise and support

up to a maximum of CHF 4 million per enterprise

Acceptance criteria

  • Stable establishment, taxed in the canton of Geneva
  • Developing business and jobs in Geneva
  • Viability and possibilities for future development
  • Subsidiary to traditional sources of financing
  • No distortion of competition on the cantonal market
  • Respect for collective bargaining agreements (concluded between employers’ and employee associations)  and for accepted practises of working conditions
  • Respect for the principles of sustainable development

The FAE plays the role of facilitating your access to financing by guaranteeing commercial loans and equipment leases. More concretely, this means supplying your bank with a guarantee bond in the form of a surety, through:

  • Cautionnement romand (a federal surety agency) for amounts up to CHF 500,000 and/or
  • directly through the FAE for amounts greater than CHF 500,000 and up to CHF 4 million.

The surety is a contract by which (the FAE or Cautionnement romand) becomes committed to the bank (or to the leasing entity) by guaranteeing the loan obtained by the enterprise. Therefore, it is not actually a loan, but a commitment given to the lending establishment, to reimburse the balance of the loan (or of the leasing) should the debtor fail to do so. Therefore, financing for the companies is facilitated because the guarantee constitutes a surety.

The surety proposed by Cautionnement romand, and/or by the FAE, makes it possible to cover the needs for:

  • working capital (late payments from debtors, stock, work on-going, etc.)
  • Investments (supplies, machines, work, growth, etc.)
  • Purchase/take over  of a company


  • Fees for filing an application: CHF 300
  • Application for less than CHF 500,000 – Cautionnement romand
  • Study expenses (when granted): 1% of the amount of the loan guaranteed (being min. CHF 500 / max. CHF 2,700)
  • Risk premium: 1.25% per year, of the amount of the credit limit or the highest debit balance on the first of January
  • Collective life insurance with Swisslife (balance of the debt): 0.40% per year, of the limited amount or the highest debit balance at the end of December (subscribed by Cautionnement romand for the client)
  • Management expenses: CHF 250 per year
  • Application for more than CHF 500,000FAE
  • Study expense: 2% (only paid should there be a renunciation after an acceptance by the Foundation Board)

Expenses and interest are also accounted directly by the lending establishment (bank or leasing entity).

Specific basic conditions to be met:

  • Enterprises providing evidence of their viability and sustainability
  • Providing evidence of their capacity to  reimburse the loan
  • Joint partial, or full, personal liability of project holder
  • Reimbursement within no more than 7 years

Consult all the criteria for acceptance, here

Each application is analysed by an FAE corporate finance specialist and submitted to the Foundation Board at one of its monthly meetings.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in this service.

The role played by the FAE is that of a facilitator, helping companies in the canton of Geneva complete their fund-raising from investors.

If you are:

  • an innovating enterprise in its commercialisation phase and are looking for equity capital to finance your growth (Start-ups and Small and Medium Enterprises), or,
  • a company that is over-indebted, according to art. 725 of the Code of Obligations, and that is in a restructuring phase that requires more funds to re-capitalise and rebuild company equity,

the FAE will be your partner by acquiring a minority stake, to complete the fund raising together with third party investors who commit to supplying at least 55% of the increase in capital.

Acquiring a minority stake consists of investing in company capital (injection of funds) by subscribing to newly-issued securities (shares, in the majority of cases) in order to increase company equity. As concerns the FAE, this service is offered in a very selective manner under certain specific situations (notably for companies offering great potential and/or a large number of resulting jobs, as well as a possibility for the resale of the clearly identified securities). As much as possible, the FAE will make the decision once the terms for the transactions are established with the main third-party investor (lead investor).


The fees for filing an application are CHF 300.

Note that legal costs of a capital increase (notary, investment contract, shareholders’ agreement, etc.) are payable by the company

Specific terms:

  • Innovating enterprises in a commercialisation phase or SMEs in a restructuring phase
  • Investment by a third party (lead investor) who supplies at least 55% of the increase in capital.
  • Companies providing evidence of their viability and sustainability
  • Companies in a restructuring phase: measures should allow for full exit from art. 725 of the Code of Obligations

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in this service.

Give your accounts receivable as garantuee in order to finance your working capital requirements

Factoring solution proposed by the FAE allow you to obtain financing secured by your accounts receivable. This serviceallows you to finance your cash flow by assigning these unpaid invoices (accounts receivable). In this way, the FAE can provide you cash in advance for 80% of your accounts receivable (only from Swiss companies) up to the amount of CHF 250,000 (for a total of CHF 312,500 worth of your assigned invoices).

This service makes it possible for the FAE to directly finance a gap in your cash flow and thereby compensate, for example, for seasonal fluctuations in your business, late payments from your clients or short payment deadlines imposed by your suppliers.

It should be noted that this manner of financing is not apparent to your clients and that therefore they will not be informed, unless there is an unusual case of invoices being assigned (in general, there is no notification of assigned invoices). Therefore, your relations with your clients are fully assured by your company, including cases of reminders being sent out to obtain payments.

The steps to take are:

As soon as the FAE grants you the factoring solution after having analysed your application and after the Foundation Board has decided in your favour:

  • Opening an account “bis” with your bank under the name of your company, where you keep consulting rights, on which the FAE has a general power of attorney (access e-banking).
  • The assignement of your invoices to the FAE for a maximum of CHF 312,500 which corresponds to a cash advance for a maximum of CHF 250,000.
  • Upon receipt, the FAE makes the payment of 80% of the amount of these invoices you assigned into your current account (ex: for CHF 312,500 of invoices sold, a payment of CHF 250,000) usually within 5 working days.
  • The 20% remaining on the account “bis” that constitutes the guarantee will be returned when the contract ends.


  • Fees for filing an application: CHF 300
  • Interest rate: LIBOR (minimum 0%) + 2%

Specific terms:

  • Swiss debtors (only companies) whose solvability has been previously validated by the FAE.
  • Invoices for a minimum amount of CHF 3,000 having a maximum of a 90 day delay for payment.
  • An overall limit of CHF 100,000 per debtor.
  • Framework contract for one year, renewable once.
  • To receive the advance on the amount of the invoices sold, there is usually adelay of 5 working-days following the receipt of the assignement contract.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in this service.

Before you apply for financing, the FAE can partially or fully finance a mandate to support you in your development, your re-structuring and for an evaluation of your enterprise.

These mandates, carried out by private service providers (usually a trust company or a specific expert in the field involved), primarily aim  to verify the suitability of your project for development, for re-structuring, for acquiring a company, or to advise you on how to optimise the management of your company, all within the framework of the application for financing you will have submitted to the FAE                                                                                                                                                                    

For example, the following mandates have been carried out:

  • Support for setting up management tools (improvement in performance, in productivity, determining cost price)
  • Support during re-structuring project to advise the management on the appropriate steps to take and to evaluate the effects they would have on the company’s sustainability
  • Establishing a neutral diagnosis of the situation and the company’s potential for development
  • Carrying out a counter-expertise for a valuation in a company acquisition operation
  • Etc.

The steps to take:

  • When a company makes an application, an FAE corporate finance specialist makes an analysis of the company and its situation and shows the ent entrepreneur the steps he should take.
  • If the eligibility conditions are fulfilled and the context is found to be adequate, the corporate finance specialist will submit an application to the members of the FAE’s Board that will decide whether or not to grant a financial support for a mandate according to well defined specifications. It should be mentioned that this support can be total or partial (the VAT being payable by the applicant).
  • After acceptance, the applicant will be have to solicit at least 3 offers from the service providers of his choice that will be submitted to FAE’s Board for the choice of allocation of the mandate.  One should note that this choice will be made mainly on the basis of the following criteria; independence, expertise, suitability for the specifications and the cost of the mandate.


  • Fees for filing an application: CHF 300
  • It should be mentioned that the VAT related to the mandate will be payable by the company.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in this service.