Shirinbeyim M. is 53 years old. She is selling souvenirs, home products and cosmetics in a central local shop. Shirinbeyim has been in this business for five years already. During these years, the business turned into a successful one, allowing Shirinbeyim to support herself and her family. Now Shirinbeyim is planning to increase her stock and to purchase more home products plates at wholesale. With this purpose, she requests 1000 AZN. Shirinbeyim thanks everyone supporting her and promises to repay the loan on time.
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.