EIB to provide €50m loan for innovation campus project in Ukraine

WCN Editorial Team 2 Jul 2020 EUROPE BUILDINGS

The European Investment Bank (EIB) has agreed to provide a loan of €50m for the development of UNIT.City, Ukraine’s first vertically integrated innovation park.

The loan from EIB will be used for the design, renovation and construction of new, tailored facilities and structures in UNIT.City, part of the company UFuture.

The project is being supported by InnovFin Science, a joint initiative between the European Commission and the EIB to promote research and innovation across public and private bodies.

The loan is supported by Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation and managed by the EIB.

The project will help in developing infrastructure and innovative ecosystem for IT and technology companies in Central and Eastern Europe.

The place will act as a centre where start-ups and IT training, high technology companies and R&D centres, incubators and accelerators are put together in a 25-hectare inner-city site to boost the development of high-tech industry in the country.

EIB vice-president Lilyana Pavlova said: “Ukraine has among the largest and fastest-growing populations of IT professionals in Europe with about 200 000 people working in this field. In addition, most clients of Ukrainian IT companies are from Western Europe and the United States.

“Despite these remarkable achievements, Ukraine and more specifically the Kyiv urban area lack a proper ecosystem for R&D and IT companies at all stages of development, from start-ups to expanding high-tech companies.

“With its dedicated InnovFin Science support, the EIB is now helping Ukraine to bridge this gap. This will strengthen the competitiveness of the country and its capital city and enable it to take full advantage of its skilled workforce.”

The project will include private non-profit IT training facility, multifunctional flexible floor space to be used for a wide range of office accommodation, digital fabrication laboratories (fablabs), communal and interaction spaces, and seminar and meeting room spaces where events can take place.

Tenants within the campus will have access to facilities, multifunctional office space, mentorship and training programmes and cooperative tools and services to support the growth of their businesses.

The loan from EIB will be offered in 10 tranches of at least €5m each. The funds will be allocated for the construction of new campuses at the innovation park, with a total area of 70,000m². The total cost is estimated to be €110m and EIB’s loan will cover about half of the costs.

The project is expected to be completed by 2023 and could generate about 2,400 temporary jobs and create 549 permanent jobs within UFuture. In addition, 15,000 indirect jobs across tenant companies present at the UNIT.City park could also be created.

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EIB supports Ukrainian Innovation Campus Project in UNIT.City. (Credit: EIB.)

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