Ali is a 50-year-old man on pension. He is an IDP (internally displaced person) who lives in Bilasuvar IDP Settlement with his wife and son. He is a farmer who has raised seasonal fruits and vegetables for the last 10 years. He chose this business because it is profitable, and fresh crops are often in high demand. People use fresh vegetables every day and consider them healthy. Many national dishes such as pilau and dolma are made of vegetables. Fresh fruits serve every table in Azerbaijan and are also used to make fresh punch.
Ali sells his crop in the Bilasuvar central bazaar. His monthly income is 230 AZN. His wife actively helps him to raise the crops. As his products are in high demand, Ali wants to expand his business and produce more fruits and vegetables to be able to meet the demand. For this purpose he applied for a loan of 1,000 AZN. He will buy new garden tools, seeds, and fertilizers.
Aqroinvest Credit Union was founded by a group of 32 Imishli farmers in 2001, and has grown to become one of the largest credit unions in Azerbaijan. It boasts a portfolio of nearly $5 million and is wholly owned by its more than 3,500 borrowers, as of December 2011.