Farac is a 41-year-old married man with two children. He was unemployment for several years and to improve his situation he started a farming business 9 years ago. Now this is the main source of income for his family.
Raising and selling fresh fruits and vegetables brings stable income and is in high demand among the Azerbaijani people. Fresh vegetables are good for national dishes like pilau and dolma. Fresh fruits are favorites for punch. Farac usually sells his crops in the central bazaar and his profit per month is 300 AZN.
Farac decided to expand his business. For this purpose, he applied for 1500 AZN in loan. He will buy seeds and fertilizers to increase his crops and cover his customers' demand. This is Farac's second loan and he has a good client history.
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.