Ayida is a 56 year-old trader who has sold homemade jams and pickles in her shop for the last five years. She is married and has three children. She is an IDP (internally displaced person).
Ayida’s business brings a stable income of 120 AZN. Her husband is a pensioner, however his pension is too low to cover family needs and Ayida’s business is still the main financial source in her family. She applied for a 1,500 AZN loan in order to purchase more fruits and vegetables to make more jams and pickles.
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.