Sevil is 60 years old, married, and has a daughter. She is baker and has been baking and selling bread, cookies, rolls, cakes, gingerbread for 35 years. She has good skills in this area and gets 500AZN monthly. This is the main source of the family’s income but she earns additional money raising greens and vegetables in a garden. Her husband is a pensioner and helps her in gardening.
A bakery is one of the most extended métiers in Azerbaijan because the national cuisine is various. People cook or buy flour products for everyday life and holidays. Sevil’s bakery is the most popular, and local people attend it every day.
Sevil loves her job very much and does everything in order to support the business. She applied for 1500AZN in order to rebuild old bakery and buy new bakery tools.
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.