Credit Saison (“Credit Saison Co., Ltd”, “TYO:8253”) is putting its weight behind a strategy for all investment and innovation activities outside of Japan with the launch of a newly structured global business division, Saison International, that has an investment of $670 million to date.

To date, Credit Saison’s international business has made up close to 10 percent of the company’s profits. Saison International intends to triple this, contributing to a third of Credit Saison’s profits going forward.

“Credit Saison’s international headquarters is launching with the playbook, results, and backing required to pave a new way forward for the financial services industry. Anchoring this strategy is the autonomy Saison International will empower each market with to double down on their hyperlocal strategies. We have found that this unconventional approach has driven each country’s team to operate like a team of founders and resulted in profits that continue to grow quarter on quarter,” said Kosuke Mori, CEO of Saison International.

Kosuke Mori has been appointed as CEO of Saison International to accelerate the blueprint of Saison International. To ensure that the strategies executed are represented at a parent company level, he has also been brought on as a new board member of Credit Saison. The appointment will see Mori representing Saison International’s strategic interests at the board level while also ensuring operational efficacy at an execution level in each market.

Saison International is currently exploring opportunities to expand into fast-growing regions including South America and Africa. It aims to grow beyond its six existing markets in Asia which include Credit Saison India a lending company in South Asia; Saison Capital, its venture capital arm headquartered from Singapore; and Saison Indonesia, an SME-targeted lending company that is also strengthening its consumer-targeted finance products.

The new international headquarters also includes a new impact investing arm Saison Investment Management Private Limited (“SIMPL”) which advises and manages proprietary funds. These funds are to be deployed strategically to support the growth of innovative and inclusive businesses providing underserved individuals and enterprises with access to financial services.

More autonomy will be given to the companies under Saison International (Credit Saison India, Saison Capital, Saison Indonesia, SIMPL and others) to ensure more prompt investment and business decision-making, so that country teams closer to the ground can be quick to execute strategies. On a practical level, this will mean that a global management committee comprising the leadership of each country-level subsidiary will meet on a regular basis to steer the direction of Credit Saison’s international business goals.

Based on this direction, the decision will then sit with the committee on how to best set plans into action by leveraging on the group’s financial backing. Before the formation of Saison International, country teams would have to screen proposals at a regional level before raising requests for board approval.

“The launch of Saison International will really help to chart out how Credit Saison India can become an integral part of the journey ahead for Saison International. Furthermore, this will also help solidify further our own growth story. Within 2.5 years of lending, we have grown our AUM to close to $375M and we have been profitable within the first few months of starting lending,” said Presha Paragash, CEO of Credit Saison India.

“The new Global Management Committee under Saison International is a bold move which will give us new ways to help startup founders access a new regional edge. Saison Capital’s portfolio companies would have the competitive advantage of on-the-ground insights from other teams to keep with the pace of innovation,” said Chris Sirise, Partner at Saison Capital.

Opening the 2021 Cohort of Saison Capital VC Scout Program – April 2021