Elmira M. is a hardworking woman. She is devoted to raising animals, especially cattle, which she buys and, after fattening, sells in the local market. In this manner, she obtains the income that she needs. Over many years, this has allowed her to earn enough income to help her husband with the family expenses. In order to increase her income and revitalize her business, Elmira is requesting a loan of 1,600 AZN to purchase calves. This will enable her to increase her sales, to earn more, and to meet the needs of her four children.
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.