Qarash is a 33-year-old man, married, with two children. He is an Internally Displaced Person (IDP) and lives with his family in an IDP settlement. He has a small drugstore where he has sold medicine for the past 10 years. Qarash is experienced and skilled in this field. His brother helps him a lot to run the business. Qarash sells only certified drugs, and his monthly income is 280 AZN.
Qarash needs additional capital to invest in his business. This will allow him to improve quality of his products and increase monthly sales. For this purpose he has applied for 1,500 AZN. This will be his sixth loan, and he has a very good client history.
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.