Azadi is 42 years old., married, and has two children. Azadi began earning income selling seasonal fruits when he was nine years old to support his family. After a while, he began working at other jobs, but realized that his work wasn't bringing in enough income to cover the expenses of his family. Therefore, Azadi decided to return to the seasonal fruits sales business. Now he has permanent customers and he needs additional capital to purchase fruits for sale, given the high demand during the current season. Azadi is requesting a loan of 1,000 AZN, which he will use to buy additional fruits for sale and thus earn increased profits. Azadi plans to use the additional income to purchase seasonal vegetables to diversify his merchandise.
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.