Reyhan is a 52-year-old market vendor. She is married and has four children. Reyhan has been selling food items, beverages, toiletries, detergents, and clothes for the last 20 years. During these years, Reyhan has acquired the knowledge and skills required for her business. She is a very friendly and polite person, and she has regular clients who always come to her shop to buy something. Her spouse helps her sell the products.
Her monthly profit is 138 AZN, and she would like to increase it. From the products she sells, the most popular are butter, macaroni, cookies, and sugar, and she would like to purchase more of them for her shop. For this purpose, she applied for a 1,000 AZN loan.
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.