Shaban is a 47-year-old entrepreneur who earns most of his living by selling construction materials. He is married and has two children, but is the only breadwinner in his family. He has about 10 years of experience in this field, and usually orders new supplies every one to three months. In his village, he is known for selling high-aquality construction materials, and he would like to take advantage of that reputation by buying more items to sell to his customers. To make this possible, he is applying for a loan for 1,200 AZN. This will be his second loan from our organization. He repaid his first loan fully and 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.