Grassland's story starts with Accion Microcredit Company (AMC). Invited by the Inner Mongolia government to launch a microcredit company (MCC) pilot, Accion set up the subsidiary company AMC to provide loans for urban and rural, small and medium sized enterprises. AMC represented the first wholly-owned foreign micro-credit company in the province of Inner Mongolia, and only the second wholly foreign-owned MCC in the country.
In 2011, Sagamore Investments agreed to invest US$22m in Accion Microcredit Company to build Grassland Finance Limited. Sagamore brought both the expertise and the patient-capital approach Accion was seeking, and this partnership helped provide Grassland with the capital it needed to grow and reach more people, broaden product offerings and attract great talent. Grassland established a head office in Beijing with a shared services platform to support expansion of microfinance across China.
In 2014, DEG invested US$17m in Grassland to join Accion and Sagamore in building a leading microfinance company in China. Grassland used the investment from DEG to expand the company's national footprint by capitalizing new microfinance licenses in Wanzhou in Chongqing Prefecture and Jishou in Hunan province.
Sagamore's founders have worked together since 2002 and have invested in over 100 funds and companies in Asia and the US.
Sagamore's first investments focused on biotechnology and expanded to technology fund and direct investments in China in 2006.
In total, Sagamore has over $500m in assets under management for investing in opportunities in China.
Accion International is a global nonprofit committed to creating a financially inclusive world, with a pioneering legacy in microfinance and fintech impact investing.
For more than 50 years, Accion has helped more than 30 million clients through its work with more than 110 partners in 50 countries.
DEG was founded in 1962 and is headquartered in Cologne, Germany.
DEG is a member of the KFW Group with registered capital of EUR 750m.
DEG finances direct investments in developing and emerging market countries in order to make a sustainable contribution to advancing their economic development.
We believe that the journey to excellence has no final stop. We will never stop challenging and overcoming ourselves.
Become a leader in the micro-credit industry.
Provide customer-centric, fast, easy and convenient service.
Inclusion for prosperity.
Helping our clients to achieve their business ambitions through the best customer experience.
Building China's middle class through accessible, affordable and efficient financing solutions for micro and small business owners.