Taleh A. is 31 years old. He is married and has one child. He is a small-business entrepreneur who sells different kinds of detergents like soap, shampoo, toothpaste, shaving cream and washing powder as well as foodstuffs in his store. His monthly income is 250-400 AZN. Taleh is not alone in this business. His wife actively helps him with sales.
Today, Taleh is requesting a loan of 1000 AZN to increase his stock. He is ready to work even harder, make sacrifices and push every once in a while to achieve his goal and become a successful entrepreneur. Taleh’s main goal is to increase his profit enough to open one more store in the future.
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.