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COMPLEX INFORMATION SERVICE – COVID-19

How can we help you? | Our latest COVID-19 Newsletters | Contact | RSM Global Coronavirus Resource centre

Dear Clients,

In these difficult times, we would like to reassure you, your loved ones and your businesses of our strong support.

The coronavirus pandemic is causing uncertainty around the whole world, and many Czech businesses and entrepreneurs are facing unprecedented challenges. Both the government and individual ministries have regularly been announcing many business support measures, and we will continue to provide you with useful information about the key areas of interest, such as tax relief, employment-related measures, financing and business continuity.

We have prepared this information service for you with a collection of previously issued reports dealing with the relevant issues, but also a list of areas in which we can help you. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have.

#staysafe

What is your situation?

COVID Plus programme

This programme is sponsored by the Ministry of Finance together with the Ministry of Industry and Trade and Exportní garanční a pojišťovací společnost, a.s. (Export Guarantee and Insurance Company, EGAP).

After approval by the European Commission and further specification of the detailed conditions by the corresponding act and government regulation, the programme was launched on 5 May 2020. The Covid Plus programme is intended for large employers whom it helps maintain the liquidity that they need to keep their operations going and for the development of export companies. The government has already allocated the first CZK 4 billion for assistance provided through guarantees. The programme’s total insurance capacity is CZK 330 billion. The programme was developed in coordination with the banks who will be evaluating the applicants.

The COVID Plus programme is extended until June 30, 2021.

Who the programme is for:

  • Applications may be submitted by companies in which the proportion of total sales of exported goods and services in 2019 was at least 20%; this includes production deliveries to other exporters
  • For companies with at least 250 employees (also applies to economically connected groups)
  • The programme is not intended for companies which were in existential difficulties before the state of emergency was declared.
  • Neither is it available to companies whose primary economic activity consists of services in transport, accommodation, tourism or gambling.
Parameters of the COVID Plus programme:
  • The guarantee can also be provided for loans used for operations, working capital, refinancing or restructuring of a current loan or investment
  • Guarantee period: three years for working capital loans and up to five years for investment loans
  • The maximum limit for the loan is 25% of total annual sales of products and services in 2019 – CZK 5 million minimum (CZK 5 million – CZK 2 billion)
  • EGAP will cover the principal up to 80%


COVID III

Following up on the COVID II programme, the ČMZRB launched the COVID III programme. The program was approved on 18 May 2020 and CZK 150 billion was set aside for it. The program is intended for self-employed and for entrepreneurs with up to 500 employees, whose economic activities are limited due to the coronavirus infection and related preventive measures. Loans are provided by cooperating commercial banks. The entrepreneur therefore applies in the form of a loan application to a bank that has a portfolio guarantee agreement with ČMZRB for the COVID III Program.

The COVID Plus programme is extended until June 30, 2021.

Who is the programme for:
  • For self-employed and companies with up to 500 employees in the Czech Republic, including Prague
  • The applicant does not postulate other public support, de minimis aid for the same guaranteed loan and the guaranteed loan must not be supported by a directly managed European Union instrument,
  • The applicant does not apply for support in the COVID Plus programme
Parameters of the COVID III programme:
  • The warranties offered are as follows:
    • Up to 90% of the principal of a guaranteed loan for companies with up to 250 employees
    • Up to 80% of the principal of a guaranteed loan for companies with 250 to 500 employees
  • The maximum amount of the guaranteed loan may not exceed CZK 50 million
  • The duration of the warranty is max. 3 years
  • The agreed maturity of the loan may not be before 1 January 2021, with the exception of loans agreed for an indefinite period.
What can a guaranteed loan be used for?
  • Reimbursement of operating expenses (wages, rent, energy, supplier-customer invoices, materials, supplies, etc.)
  • Acquisition of small tangible or intangible assets
  • Acquisition and financing of supplies or materials.

To provide guarantees from ČMZRB and EGAP, it is first necessary to contact the bank that confirmed its participation in the program with an application for a loan!
  • The list of participating banks is available on the ČMZRB and EGAP websites, but it is assumed that all commercial banks that finance entrepreneurs will be involved.

What to watch out for?
  • When financing wage costs with a loan guaranteed by ČMZRB, it automatically disqualifies applicants for participation in the Antivirus program.
  • Applicants at ČMZRB may also not draw public support within the COVID Plus program.
  • Similarly, applicants for a guarantee from EGAP may not use another instrument of public financing support linked to the Covid-19 pandemic (provided in the form of loan guarantees or interest rate subsidies).


COVID 2021 and COVID Uncovered Costs Programs

At the beginning of April 2021, the Ministry of Industry and Trade published calls for two new subsidy programs to support entrepreneurs affected by the coronavirus crisis. These extensive programs, COVID 2021 and COVID Uncovered Costs, are intended to replace the current set of targeted subsidy programs designated for specific sectors, such as COVID Accommodation, Rent, Gastro or Culture.

Applicants must choose one of these two programs depending on their needs. The subsidies are conditional upon a decrease in turnover by 50% in the given period compared to the reference period of January to March 2019 or 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications are submitted through the AIS MPO platform, which can be accessed only with an eIdentity.

 Parameters of the COVID 2021 Program

  • Relevant period: 11 January – 31 March (80 days)
  • For applicants who applied for the COVID Accommodation II subsidy, the beginning of the relevant period is postponed until 23 January.
  • The amount of the subsidy is CZK 500 per employee per day.
  • The application must be accompanied by a list of employees which will be verified in the database of the Czech Social Security Administration.
  • The subsidy is included in the limit under 3.1 EU Temporary Framework, i.e. EUR 1.8 million.
  • The subsidy obtained should be used to cover operating and maintenance costs from February to March 2021.
  • It can only be combined with the Antivirus Program, but it must not overlap with periods covered by other subsidy programs (such as COVID Accommodation II).
Applications for this program are accepted from 12 April until 31 May.

Parameters of the COVID Uncovered Costs Program
  • Relevant period: 1 January – 31 March 2021
  • The subsidy covers 60% of uncovered costs for the relevant period.
  • The uncovered costs are calculated on the basis of the adjusted profit and loss statement – i.e. the loss after the deduction of all subsidies received for the given period (e.g. from the Antivirus, COVID Accommodation II or Gastro programs).
  • The application must be accompanied by an adjusted profit and loss statement, a turnover decrease statement and a list of all subsidies obtained and expected to be obtained for the given period.
  • If the reported loss from the adjusted profit and loss statement exceeds CZK 5 million, it is necessary for this statement to be verified by an auditor.
  • The maximum amount of subsidy per entrepreneur is CZK 40 million.
  • It is not included in the limit of EUR 1.8 million under the 3.1 EU Temporary Framework.
  • The subsidy obtained should be used to cover the reported costs.
  • It can be combined with other subsidy programs, but this will reduce the losses of the company and thus the amount of the subsidy.
 Applications for this program are accepted from 19 April until 19 July.

If you need help filling in your application, including its annexes, or have any other questions about your projects for which you seek funding, please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you are interested in this service, please contact us at Spolecnetozvladneme@rsm.cz (“we can handle this together”@rsm.cz)

With many years of experience with project financing, we are happy and ready to help you with your financing immediately.
Comprehensive information on subsidies is available in the payroll manual for employers on the website of the Czech Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs HERE

Please contact:
Jiřina Kovaříková, Head of Payroll
jirina.kovarikova@rsm.cz
+420 731 193 980
For current information on taxes we recommend following the website of the Ministry of Finance of the Czech Republic.
RSM CZ has a team of professionals who can take care of your IT, both remotely and in the form of regular visits.

Please contact:
Karel Fišnar, Head of Cloud Solution & Services
karel.fisnar@rsm.cz
+420 602 614 817
A team of IT specialists from RSM CZ will conduct an initial security analysis and is here to take care of all vulnerability risks and the availability of your infrastructure on a continual basis.

Please contact:
Karel Fišnar, Head of Cloud Solution & Services
karel.fisnar@rsm.cz
+420 602 614 817
We are able to move your applications to a data centre run by RSM CZ in a very short time and run them in a full 24x7 mode.

Please contact:
Karel Fišnar, Head of Cloud Solution & Services
karel.fisnar@rsm.cz
+420 602 614 817
Our team of process specialists offers you a helping hand and guidance aimed at increasing the efficiency of your company management and accelerating and streamlining your processes.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
The financial function is growing within organizations to become a strategic enabler. We help you modernize your financial functions by optimizing strategy and operating models, improving business processes and leveraging digital finance solutions.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
Monitoring all existing processes, deep understanding of the company’s inner workings and identifying areas with potential for improvement. We provide the process design and improvement strategy planning that aims to build your processes in the most efficient way for your organization. “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”; therefore, we can also offer the implementation of lean six sigma process methodologies.

Lean is about smooth process flow, focusing only on those activities that add value for the customer and eliminating all other activities that don’t. It’s about removing waste and increasing customer value.

Lean is based on the ability to achieve more with fewer resources by continuously eliminating waste. Products and Services are driven in the right amount, to the right location, at the right time and in the right condition.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
Business leaders face challenges in terms of how to attract, engage, manage and retain talents every day. RSM's people and organization consultants can help you address your people challenges with custom solutions for your organization.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
Digital is evolving quickly, and the right solutions can significantly enhance your efficiency and productivity. Our team helps your organization understand your technology and digital needs and works with you to design a strategy that aligns with your goals.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
Continuous Improvement will move an organization further along the path of becoming a digital business, where IT systems and the embedded processes they support become virtually self-managing, steering them toward truly intelligent IT.

Please contact:
Mária Straňáková, Implementation Manager
maria.stranakova@rsm.cz
+420 702 233 104
The current economic developments contrast sharply with the expectations presented in early 2020. It is evident that even with the high level of existing knowledge, there are events which recur in the economy and lead to more or less significant negative economic fluctuations.

In the Czech economy, a number of small businesses have grown into successful enterprises. Often, they grew organically, with the scope of their activities gradually expanding and more production capacity being added. In many cases, this development took place within a single company.

The negative economic situation is an opportunity to consider steps towards the long-term diversification of business risks. One step is to split companies into several business units, where the key tangible assets are concentrated in one of the entities and leased out to others under standard market conditions. This can be done using the process of legal transformations, such as split-ups.

RSM CZ has long-term experience with restructuring processes, including related activities (valuation, financial statements, related tax guidance, etc.).

If you are considering changes to your company/holding structure, we are here to discuss your plans with you.

Please contact:
Rudolf Hájek, Senior Manager
rudolf.hajek@rsm.cz
+420 739 609 022
Currently, all businesses are working hard to stay resilient through tough economic times. As lockdown measures are gradually easing, questions may arise as to whether a particular company has suffered damage for which it should be compensated. At the same time, the question of damage cannot be narrowed down just to damage caused by restrictions imposed by the state; it is necessary to take into account the aspect of contractual relationships and other justified expectations.

If you are considering bringing your claims to an independent court, a legal analysis by a legal specialist is something to start with. In the next step, it is worth considering the calculation of the damage by an independent expert. This can take various forms – including an indicative valuation (which usually serves to define the basic scope of the possible damage) or an independent expert’s opinion, which can be presented to the court as independent evidence according to the rules of the current legislation. The advantage of an expert opinion is also that it is a detailed economic analysis that the judge can become acquainted with in detail.

The expert institute RSM CZ has extensive experience with the processing of expert opinions for the purpose of court litigation, acting either at the request of a party involved in a court dispute or on the basis of appointment by a court.

We will be happy to discuss various options for our future cooperation with you.

Please contact:
Rudolf Hájek, Senior Manager
rudolf.hajek@rsm.cz
+420 739 609 022
As regards commercial real estate, the attitude of individual investors will be of importance. The commercial market, dominated by foreign investors, may be influenced by an outflow of these investors in the event of difficulties in their home countries. The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on commercial real estate is highly individual and is mainly related to the structure of the current tenant in terms of income stability, operational resilience, and occupancy rate. In these terms, a portfolio consisting of international corporations appears to be ideal. The biggest risks are faced by owners who offer short-term leases or those negotiating the conclusion or renewal of lease agreements. It will therefore be important in the long run for companies and real estate owners to be prepared and able to respond effectively in the event of the occurrence of a similar situation. A number of tenants will wish to cover these circumstances in their future lease agreements.

In our newsletter you will found our summary of the potential impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the individual commercial real estate segments. We have focused on one of the likely scenarios of the development of the rates of return on premium real estate in a premium location with the best tenant structure (Prime Yields), which are crucial in terms of the valuation of real estate and which should reflect the impacts of this new pandemic crisis.

The full newsletter on the Impacts of Coronavirus on Commercial Real Estate can be found HERE. In this article, we focus on individual segments of commercial real estate - office, industrial and logistics spaces, retail, and hotels.

What can we do for you?

Whatever your need for valuation in this situation, we will be happy to discuss the issue with you. The RSM CZ expert institute provides a wide range of real estate valuation services.

Please contact:
Jiří Skotnica, Senior Manager
jiri.skotnica@rsm.cz
+420 739 680 970
This newsletter loosely follows our previously published comment concerning the development of real estate prices in the context of the economic downturn, with a specific focus on the impact on what are called Prime Yields.

In this article, we complete our view with the possible development of the cost of the financing of real estate properties and a wide group of industrial enterprises.

Development of the Cost of Financing Real Estate Projects

As we mentioned in our previous newsletter, there are currently no real estate transactions from which it would be possible to estimate the current level of Prime Yields. The situation is also similar as regards the cost of financing real estate properties using senior loan resources. In this case, however, we can use the bond markets, which publish information on the required yield of bonds, as a source of information. In our analysis, we used the Real Estate data published in the Capital IQ database, based on values as of 3 February 2020 and 15 April 2020. We used bonds in the AA- to A- investment category denominated in USD or EUR and, as a second group, bonds in the BBB + to BB- category (this category will include most transactions in the Czech Republic).

In our analysis, we use IRS 5Y as the basic interest rate – i.e. a five-year fixation of the rates like PRIBOR or EURIBOR. Where these rates are negative, we use the rate of 0% p.a.

As of 3 February 2020, the risk spreads in bonds in the AA- to A- category had a median level of 36 bps – i.e. the bonds offered a yield close to the relevant IRS rates. However, as of 15 April 2020, the median of the risk spreads was at 214 bps. The required performance in such highly creditworthy bonds thus grew by approximately 180 bps. In the case of the very frequent financing in EUR, this development directly corresponds to the increase in the cost of financing from senior sources, while in the case of the less frequent financing in CZK, we can see the positive effects of the central bank’s policies[1], which resulted in the reduction of IRS rates. Five-year funding would thus be more expensive by only 70 bps (however, this would still be more expensive in absolute figures compared to financing in EUR).

In the case of the less creditworthy but still reasonably high-quality bond group with a BBB+ to BB- rating, the development between the two dates is only slightly more dynamic, with the risk spreads at the median level growing from 77 bps to 283 bps – i.e. by approx. 200 bps. This development would also correspond to the increase in the cost of financing in EUR; as regards financing in CZK, the cost of external loan resources grew by only 100 bps (financing in CZK would continue to be more expensive than financing in EUR).

In recent history, senior loan resources have been the most significant resource of real estate financing, with their share in the value of the real estate normally exceeding 60% of the real estate’s market value. Although bonds are generally considered an instrument bearing a higher risk, the increase in risk spreads even in the high creditworthiness category clearly indicates an increase in Prime Yields and an increase in investors’ demands for capital investments in real estate.

Development of the Cost of Financing Industrial Enterprises

At the same time, we examined the development of bond yields in the category of broadly defined industrial enterprises.

Here we first worked with the category of highly creditworthy businesses, with their rating in the AA- to A- category. The median risk spread of these bonds grew from 26 bps to 93 bps – i.e. by approximately 70 bps. As a consequence of the CNB’s policy affecting financing in CZK, the cost of financing in this category decreased slightly, by 40 bps.

The development of yields from bonds in a purely speculative group of businesses with the rating grade of BB+ to B- is significantly more dynamic. Enterprises with such a credit quality represent a large group in the context of the Czech Republic. The median risk spread grew from 259 bps to 768 bps – i.e. by approximately 510 bps. The cost of financing in CZK would then grow from 4.41% to 8.43% – i.e. despite the decline in key interest rates, the cost of external resources would almost double.

It is again true that the bonds may be affected by lower liquidity and a worse security level compared to senior bank resources.

The above development shows how significant the government’s policy aimed at guaranteeing a part of the loan resources within what are called the COVID programmes can be. For a considerable number of businesses with limited financial strength, such an increase in the cost of financing in a situation of falling demand for their products may represent an acceptable option. If you are considering the use of financing with state programme backing, we will be happy to offer our guidance.
[1] The 2T repo rate dropped from 2.25% p.a. as of 7 February 2020 to 1.00% p.a. on 27 March 2020

Please contact:
Rudolf Hájek, Senior Manager
rudolf.hajek@rsm.cz
+420 739 609 022

YOU HAVEN’T FOUND AN ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION?

Hello, I am Martina, the chief COVID 19 crisis coordinator at RSM CZ & SK. If you need any help, I am available by phone every weekday between 9AM and 5PM. You can also e-mail me. Thank you.
Let’s work together to solve your problem!

Martina Voborníková
RSM CZ COVID Coordinator
+420 739 343 392
Martina.Vobornikova@rsm.cz
spolutozvaldneme@rsm.cz

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Do you know what the real options for receiving funding from programmes related to the measures taken against COVID-19 are?  We have prepared for you an updated overview of which funding programmes are available for entrepreneurs and what their current status is: COVID II programme The first round of applications for the COVID II Guarantee […]

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This newsletter loosely follows our previously published comment concerning the development of real estate prices in the context of the economic downturn, with a specific focus on the impact on what are called Prime Yields. In this article, we complete our view with the possible development of the cost of the financing of real estate […]

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