Nasir J. is a 47-year-old farmer who breeds cattle in the small village of Sabirabad since 2004. He is married and has three children. He buys small calves, raises them and sells them in the livestock bazaar or to local butchers. Nasir's son helps him in raising cattle.
Nasir would like to increase the number of cattle and purchase more. This will allow him to increase his income and improve the life of his family. Cattle raising is the only financial source in his family and he promises to repay on time.
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.