Message of the Euler Hermes CEO

Always first at your side

The last quarter of the year is traditionally depicted as a sprint with an intense period of economic activity in most of sectors and regions. However, as the second wave of Covid-19 strikes many countries around the world and imposes new lockdowns in many European countries, this threatens the fragile economic recovery foreseen for this quarter. Amidst this intense uncertainty, now combined with the hope of prompt and widespread distribution of the vaccines, I wanted to reiterate that helping you navigate through the ever-changing landscape is literally at the heart of everything we do. As every day or week goes by, we continue reinforcing our dedication to you in terms of support, adequate credit risk transfer, advice and market and economic intelligence.

I am also proud to share that we pursue our leading role in working hand in hand with governments to ensure the good functioning of the inter corporation credit in 2021. We have been actively discussing the extension of the State Support Scheme with authorities in several countries. The German and Belgian governments announced the continuation of their support scheme to companies for the 1st semester of 2021, hopefully paving the way for other countries.

As in the global lockdown earlier this year, most of Euler Hermes employees are working remotely with no disruption in any of our services. The commitment I took last March was upheld: no matter the situation, we remain fully available and reachable; in fact, we have taken our customer care even further with more robust services and support. We also set into place new technologies to be by your side more confidently and steadily through these unpredictable hardships. I cannot thank you enough for your enduring trust.

A crucial part of our societal role also lies in our predictive intelligence; more than ever, our economic experts have reinforced their predictive outlooks with frequent and in-depth sectorial and regional market intelligence as the global situation evolves. I invite you to visit us at:

We predict that pre-crisis recovery will not happen before Q4 2022; this entails a jump of 31% in insolvency rates by the end of 2021, with 20% of short-work schemes workers unemployed; accordingly, we believe that nature or risk is changing. Aspects such as the adoption of ESG standards, digitisation, and social and sanitary conditions play a role as necessary as commercial and financial factors in making companies more resilient towards unexpected shocks.

These new Covid19 waves, happening across many countries, is a hard blow, and it is severely hitting the smaller to mid-size businesses. Keeping a long term vision is difficult in these circumstances, for any business leader. Priority must be on securing financial positions as much as possible, but also continuing to nurture growth projects. The latter is key in ensuring competitiveness in the post-pandemic world. As a 120-year-old business, we at Euler Hermes believe that decrypting the next normal and anticipating the next turn is crucial to survival. This is why we are expediting our digital transformation: to enable you to capture the full scope of changing risks and act early to defuse some of the impacts of this global crisis.

As my last letter to you as CEO of Euler Hermes, I cannot insist enough: throughout the uncertainty, our dedication to secure confidence in tomorrow is our goal, and the value we deliver to you will warrant your trust in us. No matter what, we will be first by your side.

Kind regards,

Wilfried Verstraete
Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Management Euler Hermes

25 results

May 11, 2021

Raising prices as a last resort

Research of Allianz Trade shows that only 5 sectors in the Eurozone have the power to increase their retail prices. Read more.

Mar 26, 2021

Tourism: Europe at the recovery, but only in 2024

As governments race to contain new and more contagious variants of Covid-19, health passports will not be enough to revive tourism. According to Allianz Trade, the tourism industry could only see a recovery only in 2024. Read more.

Feb 19, 2021

Economic forecast 2021

The large-scale deployment of various Covid-19 vaccines will boost global economic growth. However, it will be necessary to wait until at least until 2022 for economic activity to return to pre-crisis level.

25 results