“In addition to grants, advice, and a number of information and incentive programmes, Komerční banka offers advantageous products, including free accounts and business activity financing, to start-ups. Together with AMSP we also want to broaden our support for small sole traders, in particular crafts and craft guilds, next year,” says Patrice Begue, Executive Director for Marketing and Communication at Komerční banka.
The new framework agreement between KB and AMSP follows up on these two partners’ successful long-term cooperation. The alliance between a stable bank and an independent organisation creates a platform pursuing a shared objective – improving small and medium-sized enterprises’ competitiveness in both the Czech Republic and international markets. The aim of the partnership is to support activities concerning EU subsidies, exports, and projects focused on start-up businesses such as the successful Start Up! grant programme, and also the renaissance of important crafts.
“For Komerční banka, as the leader in corporate banking, its cooperation with AMSP is crucial. The partnership helps us gain insight into the whole sector’s current needs and the dynamics of the expected changes, and makes it possible for us to provide effective support for the main pillar of the Czech economy, i.e., small and medium-sized enterprises and sole traders,” said Vladimír Jeřábek, who serves on the Board of Directors of Komerční banka.
Karel Havlíček, AMSP Board Chairman, adds: “A few years ago, we based our cooperation with Komerční banka on our teams’ everyday work rather than big gestures or strong proclamations. A few years later, we can say that the Nastartujtese.cz and Rok řemesel competitions, the Trade News journal and our joint publication on export risk management are unrivalled in our country. Every year, we take on more and more work and today, we have a really big partnership with tangible results.”
Association of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises and Crafts CZ brings together small and medium-sized enterprises and craftspeople and their organisations from all over the country on an open and apolitical platform. The Association was founded in 2001. It represents the interests of some 260,000 business entities across sectors. Since 2009, is has conducted a series of unique independent surveys of business entities’ views of problematic areas of business. The results of all surveys are the core input to the Association’s position papers. Its main areas of interest include both traditional and trendy lines of business. The current topics include family business, see the RODINNÁ FIRMA [The Family Firm] project, start-up businesses, see the SVOU CESTOU-young business [Your Own Way – Young Business] project, the FANDÍME ŘEMESLU! [We Root for Crafts],project supporting crafts, a project supporting women in business, PODNIKAVÁ ŽENA [Entrepreneurial Women], and a project geared towards preparations for electronic recording of sales for the catering, retail and micro-business segments, called MALÝ OBCHOD [Small Trade]. The Association cooperates with the government and the various ministries and over recent years has initiated a host of statutory measures. It is one of the institutions authorised to participate in the inter-departmental commenting procedure related to forthcoming legislation, and it is a member of the Business Council and many other panels advising the government and ministries, including assessment commissions. For its members it primarily provides information services, advice and analyses specifically targeted at the segment of small and medium-sized enterprises and craftspeople in a number of sectors, and also participation in specialist events, workshops, conferences and meetings of businesses inside and outside the Czech Republic, and overall promotion of this segment’s interests vis-à-vis the government, Parliament and other institutions. Members can also use exclusive offers and benefits of AMSP’s partners, and the Association also runs its own Grant Programme for AMSP ČR Members. With a view to raising the profile of small and medium-sized enterprises and craftspeople, the Association grants its aegis and nominates to, and serves as one of the jurors of, a number of business competitions. It is one of the founders of the Coalition for Transparent Business.