Khaqani is a 29-year-old businessman. He is married with two daughters. He has his own café, where he provides lunches and dinners containing the national food. He is responsible for purchasing goods for his café and serving clients. His café has a very good location in the bazaar, where a lot of people who work in the bazaar come to have a quick lunch. His monthly income is 80 AZN (Azerbaijani New Manat).
He has big plans of expanding his business in the future and opening another café in the center of the town; however, now he just needs to improve the conditions of his café and make renovations. For this purpose, he applied for a 1,000 AZN loan. He already repaid one loan and proved himself a trusted client.
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.