From a large and humble family, Gulmira A., 32, is a married loving mother of one son. She started her business of raising and selling cattle in 2002, learning everything on her own. Now helped by her husband, Gulmira provides a better quality of life for her family with the income she generates. She is requesting a 1000 AZN loan to buy more young cattle to later sell when they are fully grown. With this investment, Gulmira will be able to substantially increase her earnings and improve her quality of life.
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.