Japan’s Credit Saison begins online lending in India for fintech startups

12, Oct. 2019

NEW DELHI, NNA - Japanese non-bank financial service provider Credit Saison Co. is launching online lending operations in India, banking on a growing demand from financial technology (fintech) startups and individuals who are insufficiently served by the country’s traditional banking system.

Credit Saison’s Indian subsidiary, Kisetsu Saison Finance (India) Pvt. Ltd., has recently acquired the necessary licenses from the Reserve Bank of India to begin the digital lending business, the Tokyo-based company said in a statement on Thursday. Kisetsu Saison Finance was founded in June last year to prepare for the launch of operations.

Kisetsu Saison Finance is starting operations this month in cooperation with local corporate partners to provide loans to startup companies engaged in information technology-driven financial services to a wide range of sectors including education, medical care and e-commerce, a Credit Saison spokeswoman said.

It will accumulate know-how in the area on the spot for the time being, aiming to start direct financing to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) as well as middle- and low-income earners in two to three years, she added.

In India, demand for online lending – targeted at MSMEs and individual customers who cannot receive loans from conventional banks because of their low credit worthiness – is “growing rapidly,” the statement said. This market is forecast to be worth over $1 trillion within the next five years, it added, citing a 2018 report by Boston Consulting Group.

Kisetsu Saison Finance is owned 99.99 percent by Credit Saison and 0.01 percent by Credit Saison Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd., Credit Saison’s Singapore regional headquarters. Kisetsu Saison Finance’s capital and the amount of investment in it were not disclosed.