The European Investment Bank (EIB) today signed a EUR 70m loan with Cosentino Group, a global leader in the design and production of innovative surfaces. The objective of this loan is to enable the Andalusian company to install production and logistics systems using cutting-edge technology on its site in Cantoria, Almería. The EIB financing – guaranteed by the Investment Plan for Europe – will also make it possible for the company to form new research and development teams at its factory. These initiatives are part of the Spanish multinational's 2016-2019 Strategic Investment and Innovation Plan, with which it hopes to consolidate its leading position and future growth.
Cosentino produces surfaces for home use such as kitchen and bathroom countertops, as well as specific architectural solutions such as façades and flooring for public spaces. Through its Silestone and Dekton brands, among others, Cosentino markets its products in more than 80 countries, with 120 of its own sales outlets throughout the world. In fact, the company won the internationalisation category at this year’s National Innovation Awards, presented by the Spanish Ministry of Economic Affairs and Competitiveness.
The Investment Plan for Europe financing from the EIB will enable the Spanish business to invest in highly automated, digitised and more efficient production, which will in turn make it possible to expand the range of products it offers its customers with new colours, textures and uses.
The loan signed today will also have a positive impact on job creation. Cosentino currently has more than 3 600 employees, 1 500 of which work in Spain, mostly in Andalusia. The rest is spread across its facilities in the US, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Australia and more than 15 EU countries. Thanks to the EIB's support and the Investment Plan for Europe guarantee, Cosentino Group will be able to implement its four-year Innovation Plan, enabling it to create 185 new direct jobs and 500 indirect jobs on its site in Almería.
At the signing ceremony today in Madrid, EIB Vice-President Román Escolano highlighted the social impact of this operation: “The loan signed today will help secure the future of a Spanish company that, with the EIB's support, will be able to apply the latest technology to maintain its position as a global leader in its sector and to continue growing and creating jobs in Andalusia.”
Cosentino Group Chairman Francisco Martínez-Cosentino Justo also attended the ceremony and thanked the EIB for: “its support for a plan and a project like Cosentino's, based on R&D, innovation and job and wealth creation for an entire sector. To achieve this, it is vital to have access to financing from both private and public sources, as is the case for this EIB loan, which complements support for our Investment Plan for the coming years. This loan adds to the pre-existing funding secured from Cosentino's banks.”
European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said: "The agreement signed today shows how the Investment Plan can play an important role in financing the modernisation of Europe's production facilities. These modernisation works are crucial to maintain our competitiveness and the high quality of our products. With the backing of the EFSI, Cosentino can continue to grow its operations and create new jobs."
Note to editor
The European Investment Bank (ElB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals.
The Investment Plan for Europe focuses on strengthening European investments to create jobs and growth. It does so by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment, providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects. The Investment Plan is already showing results. The projects and agreements approved for financing under the EFSI so far are expected to mobilise EUR 154 billion in total investments across 27 Member States and to support almost 377 000 SMEs. On 14 September 2016, the Commission proposed extending the EFSI by increasing its firepower and duration as well as reinforcing its strengths. Find the latest EFSI figures by sector and by country here. For more info, see the FAQs.
More information on the results of the Investment Plan for Europe is available here.