SBCI COVID-19 Loan Scheme

Please note the COVID-19 Loan Scheme is now closed.

At PTSB we are here to provide opportunities for your business to unlock potential and grow. That’s why we have partnered with the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) to provide the COVID-19 Loan Scheme (CLS).

The COVID-19 Loan Scheme supports qualifying viable Irish businesses and primary producers (Agriculture/Fishing) by providing access to affordable medium-term finance, enabling them to invest in their business.

The scheme will run until the 28 October 2022 or until it is fully subscribed.

Loan Purpose

The COVID-19 Loan Scheme is designed to help address the economic impact of COVID-19. Loans can be used for:

  • Working capital and investment loans to support SMEs and Small Mid-Caps (including primary producers) impacted primarily by COVID-19; or
  • Refinancing of existing SBCI COVID-19 Loan Scheme (CLS) facilities; or
  • Refinancing of a non SBCI COVID-19 loan (up to max 30%).

Scheme Features

  • Loan amounts from €25,000 to a maximum of €1,500,000 per borrower (loan amounts are dependent on aid intensity and State aid thresholds)*.
  • Loan terms of between 1 year and up to 6 years (loan terms are dependent on the purpose of the loan).
  • Loans are unsecured up to and including €500,000.
  • Amounts greater than €500,000 may be secured; however, a personal guarantee may only be sought in circumstances where it is required to capture supporting security, or where it is an uncollateralised personal guarantee and is limited to a maximum of 20% of the initial finance agreement amount.
  • Interest-only repayments are possible at the beginning of the loan for a period of 90 days subject to credit approval.
  • Loans are available up to 28 October 2022 or until the Scheme is fully subscribed.

*For Small Mid-Caps loan amounts from €25,000 to a maximum of €1.4 million.

Interest Rates

The following interest rates are available:


Interest Rate

Loan Amount









Representative Examples:

Secured/ Unsecured

Interest Rate



Total Amount

Total Cost of Credit




4 Years





5 Years






5 Years



Eligibility Criteria

SMEs and Small Mid-Caps must satisfy the following COVID-19 criteria:

The business turnover or profit must be negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic by at least 15%.

Who can apply?

Viable micro-, small, and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and Small Mid-Cap* enterprises that meet the eligibility criteria.

SMEs are defined by the standard EU definition contained in Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC as enterprises that:

  • have fewer than 250 employees.
  • have a turnover of €50 million or less (or €43 million or less on their balance sheet).
  • are independent and autonomous, i.e. not part of a wider group of enterprises.
  • have less than 25% of their capital held by public bodies.

Applicants must be established and operating in the Republic of Ireland.

*A Small Mid-Cap is an enterprise that is not an SME but has fewer than 500 employees.

Who cannot apply?

An SME/Small Mid-Cap that:

  • does not satisfy the eligibility criteria.
  • is bankrupt or being wound up or having its affairs administered by courts.
  • is subject to or fulfil the criteria under domestic law for being placed in, collective insolvency proceedings.
  • in the last five years has entered into an arrangement in the context of being bankrupt or wound up or having its affairs administered by courts.
  • has been convicted of an offence concerning professional misconduct by judgement, fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organisation, money laundering or any other illegal activity where such illegal activity is detrimental to the European Union’s financial interests.

How to apply

Step 1

Submit an Eligibility Application Form to the SBCI to check if your business is eligible for the Scheme. If the SBCI determines that you are eligible for CLS, you will be notified in writing and receive an eligibility letter with a reference number (code).

Step 2 

Call 0818 200 100 to make an appointment with your local Business Lending Advisor or your  Relationship manager.

Step 3

Gather any additional supporting documentation or information that may be required by the Bank (Your Business Lending Advisor will inform you if the Bank has any additional requirements).

Step 4

Meet with your Business Lending Advisor or Relationship Manager and submit your application.

The COVID-19 Loan Scheme operates until 28 October 2022 or until it has been fully subscribed.

Approval of loans is subject to PTSB’s own credit criteria, policies, and procedures.

Please note that your SBCI COVID-19 Loan Scheme eligibility letter is valid for 6 months.

Excluded Activities

There will be a number of exclusions to lending under the COVID-19 Loan Scheme as follows:

  • Finance of pure real estate development activity
  • Financing of Land/Property Purchase, including agricultural land
  • Financing of activities constituting pure financial transactions (e.g. Purchase of shares)
  • Loans to undertaking in difficulty
  • Finance of activities forbidden by national or EU law
  • Financing in ‘EIF Restricted Sectors’ (see below)
  • Restrictions specific to fisheries and aquaculture
  • Restrictions specific to agriculture

In addition to the above list, loans will not be provided to SMEs that have a substantial focus in any of the following sectors:

  • Tobacco, if it forms a substantial part of the applicant’s primary financed business activities or a substantial part of the proposed financing
  • Gambling, casinos and equivalent enterprises or hotels hosting such facilities
  • Ammunition and weapons, military/police equipment, infrastructure or correctional facilities, prisons
  • Production or trade in pharmaceuticals, pesticides/herbicides, chemicals, ozone depleting substances and other hazardous substances subject to international phase-outs or bans
  • Production or use of or trade in hazardous materials such as radioactive materials (except for medical isotopes and materials for diagnostics and treatment in healthcare provision), unbounded asbestos fibres and products containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)
  • Destruction of critical habitats

Warning: The cost of your repayments may increase.

Warning: The entire amount that you have borrowed will still be outstanding at the end of the interest-only period.

Warning: This new credit facility may take longer to repay than your previous credit facilities. You may pay more than if you paid over a shorter term.

Important Information

The COVID-19 Loan Scheme is offered by the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) in partnership with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE), the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM), the European Investment Fund (EIF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Lending criteria, terms and conditions apply. Variable interest rates apply and are subject to change. Please see our Terms & Conditions and Personal & Business banking charges booklets for full details. Approval is subject to repayment capacity assessment and other lending criteria. Security may be required, which may incur legal costs for the borrower. Your credit rating with PTSB may also be impacted where you have previously been refused an application for credit with PTSB.

The borrower name and other details such as the Loan Amount, Drawdown Date and quarterly updates on the performance of the loan will also be disclosed to the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) for validation and reporting purposes  For more information on how we use your personal data, your rights in relation to your personal data, and the contact details of our Data Protection Officer, please see our Data Protection Notice.

For information on how the SBCI handles personal data, including information about your data protection rights (in respect of the SBCI) and the contact details of the SBCI’s data protection officer, please refer to the SBCI’s data protection notice

If you have any queries about this product, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions. For other queries, or to book an appointment to discuss alternative borrowing options, please call 0818 200 100 or (01) 215 1363, lines are open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays), and from 10am to 2pm Saturdays and Sundays.

Business Support

Read the Guide for Micro & Small Enterprises and Guarantors: Regulations on Lending to Small & Medium-Sized Enterprises published by the Central Bank of Ireland.

Government Support

The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation have a dedicated website which lists over 80 Government supports available to Irish start-ups and small businesses. Here, business owners will find a range of supports to help manage and grow their business.

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