Farida is 49 years old and divorced. She lives with her old mother and brother. Farida has been breeding cattle for the last 10 years. She was a housewife, and now she is on pension.
Farida usually buys small calves, raises them, and fattens them for 5-6 months. She then resells them for a profitable price at the livestock bazaar. Her monthly income is 120 AZN, and this business is the only source of income in her family. Meat is in very high demand in Azerbaijan, and people use it in everyday dishes like pilau and dolma. Farida also keeps milking cows for personal use and for selling to neighbors.
She wants to expand her business and improve the living conditions of her family. She applied for a 1,500 AZN loan to purchase two cows, one milking cow, and some fodder. This will be her third loan, and she has good credit history.
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.