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Access to Finance

09 October 2009
by Ina Dimireva -- last modified 22 May 2012

Ownership equity is the most common form of financing when setting up a business in Belgium. At first, it is the starting capital invested in the company by its owner. Subsequently, it can also be generated earnings that are reinvested in the company.


If the ownership equity is not sufficient to start the company, different types of long and short-term credits may be granted on the basis of a detailed Business Plan.

Having sufficient ownership equity is one of the conditions of obtaining a credit. Financial institutions establish a link between the ownership equity and external means to determine "personal placement" and whether to grant a loan or not.

In addition to intangible investment (time, work, reflection, creation, etc.), initial funds are always provided by the project initiator and their family and friends. However, having recourse to family and friends for financing is not without risk and can lead to numerous tensions, especially if the project fails.


Public financing

Indirect support

The Partnership Fund is a federal institution that supports independent businesses (start-ups, self-employed entrepreneurs, professionals and SMEs). Funds are disbursed through banks and financial institutions.

Partnership Fund

The Walloon SME finance and guarantee company (SA SOWALFIN):

  • provides financing for the establishment, growth and transfer of SMEs bygranting loans, as a supplement to bank loans;
  • guarantees loans extended by banks.

SOWALFIN aims to be the sole source of finance for Walloon SMEs and microbusinesses.


Flanders Investment & Trade (FIT) promotes sustainable international companies, for the benefit both of companies located in Flanders and abroad, through synergies and through the expansion of networks, and the heightened expertise generated through integration.

Flanders Investment & Trade

Certain Chambers of Commerce finance innovative projects and introduce start-up entrepreneurs to potential partners.

Finance and assistance — portal

Direct assistance

The Brussels Regional Investment Company (SRIB) offers financial support to companies starting up, reorganising, and expanding in the Brussels-Capital Region.

Brussels Regional Investment Company (SRIB)

The EcoSubsiBru portal contains a database listing various forms of assistance as well as institutions available to support your company in the Brussels-Capital Region.

EcoSubsiBru portal

The Walloon Region portal provides a listing of available sources of finance.

Finance — Walloon Region portal

The Walloon Region offers an investment grant and exemption from property taxes to entrepreneurs seeking to invest locally.

Investment support in the Walloon Region

The goal of Flanders Investment & Trade is to promote sustainable international companies, for the benefit both of companies located in Flanders and abroad.

Flanders Investment & Trade

Private financing

The Belgian Knowledge Centre for SME Financing (BeCeFi) is a national reference centre for the financing of small and medium-sized enterprises. BeCeFi offers a range of information on sources of finance available at the national level.


ParticipatieMaatschappij Vlaanderen

The Business Angels network, ‘Be Angels’, introduces entrepreneurs seeking finance to private investors. Business Angels offers capital, expertise, their address book and their business experience.

Be Angels

Source: Your Europe