Emerging markets-focused microfinance holding firm Gojo raises $22m

Photo: Unsplash

Gojo & Company, Inc., a Tokyo-based holding company of microfinance institutions, has secured $22 million in the first close of its ongoing Series D financing, according to a statement.

Seven Bank, Credit Saison, SBI Group and several individual investors, including existing shareholders, joined the round.

The latest investment follows Gojo’s $40 million Series C round announced in October 2019. The company expects to announce the final close of its Series D round by July.

The company plans to use the fresh capital infusion to further grow its existing group companies in Cambodia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and India, and to expand to new markets in Asia and Africa.

Gojo makes equity investments and provides inter-company loans backed by Japanese lenders to the microfinance institutions in its network.

It claims that it has invested over $15 million in its partners, including Satya MicroCapital, Aviom India Housing Finance and Ananya Finance for Inclusive Growth in India, and Maxima Microfinance in Cambodia.

Gojo aims to enable the provision of high-quality affordable financial services for the more than 100 million unserved and underserved people in over 50 countries by 2030.

It seeks to generate revenue by leveraging the data from its MFI partners all over the world, which can be used for more sophisticated credit ratings, marketing support for consumer good companies and development of other financial services. In the long run, it plans to earn money not only by interest but the fees generated from its non-microcredit businesses.

Last year, Gojo and Capital 4 Development Asia Fund Netherlands invested $8.5 million (Rs 60 crore) in a Series B funding round in Delhi-based AVIOM India Housing Finance.

Earlier, the Japan financial company led a $6.2 million investment in New Delhi-based micro-finance firm Satya MicroCapital. With imminent approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to shore up its ownership in Satya, the company has committed to investing an additional $10 million in the firm, it said in the announcement.

Last year, Japan’s Daiwa PI Partners, a subsidiary of Daiwa Securities Group, launched its microfinance business in Myanmar through a joint venture with electronics retailer OK Myanmar. The joint venture, DO Microfinance, obtained the licence for its Myanmar operations in July 2019 and provides loans to low-income people and SMEs in the country.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.