A. Gulshen Hasan kizi is a businesswoman from Varkhankend village of the Saatli region. She is a Mekhsetian Turk refugee and she has a small farm. She has a family consisting of an invalid husband and two children. It is very difficult to feed the family. Currently she has two cows and one calf on her farm, but the milk produced is not enough to feed the family. She has a clientele and there is demand for quality milk. She decided to meet this demand by receiving credit and she applied for 800 USD credit to purchase 1 more milking cow.
Aqroinvest Credit Union was founded in 2001 by a group of 32 farmers from Imishli. It has since grown to become the largest credit union in Azerbaijan, owned by its more than 5,400 borrowers and boasting a portfolio of nearly US$12 million.
AqroInvest is focused on providing loans to the following groups of people: rural farmers, people living in distant southern villages with little or no access to finance and internally displaced people and refugees, many of whom lost their homes and livelihoods during the violent conflicts in the 1990s.
In May 2011, Aqroinvest started a new project with Kiva proving higher education loans to students. The project gives students the support and financing they need to continue their education and helps pay for tuition fees at various universities in Azerbaijan. Aqroinvest is the first credit union in the country to offer students loans.