Nuriyya V. is a 41-year-old woman who lives in Imishli in the southern region of Azerbaijan. Nuriyya has raised livestock since 1999 and during these years she sold calves for meat production to the local bazaar traders and butchers. She is very proud to have her animals and she could feed the family. Nuriyya`s husband is person with special needs and he does not work. Two of her three sons are high school students. They help Nuriyya to look after calves. For the last two years life in the region has been getting harder and Nuriyya understands that her business of raising livestock is not enough to bring up her kids and earn enough money for a normal life . Now she would like to purchase calves and raise them up for milk cows and start dairy production. So she has applied for 1200 USD to purchase four calves for estimated cost 300 USD.each.
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.