Tag Archives: turkey

Turkish startup ecosystem

In development of modern economies, one of the key roles is played by startups. A well-developed ecosystem of startups creates favorable conditions for development of innovative solutions and products that can sometimes revolutionize the market. Turkish startups are still far away from the leading in innovation California’s ‘Silicon Valley’, but the local ecosystem is slowly starting to shape solid foundations. Turkish startups receive support from government institutions such as TUBITAK or TEPAV.

One of the sectors, which pulls the Turkish economy forward, are information and telecommunication technologies. The sector’s development is conducive to the demographic structure of Turkey and the government’s policy. Compared to Western Europe, the Turks are very young people. One-fourth of the citizens did not exceed 15 years of age, and half of the population are people who are under thirty. This is potentially a very large group of consumers of mobile services and portable electronic devices.

TUBITAK provides grants and funding, supporting primarily research and development. TEPAV in turn, is a think-tank on issues of cost, which is involved in the Global Entrepreneurship Program organized by the US government. It is a bridge between Turkish businessmen and American investors. Within the frame of ‘Techno-entrepreneur’ program, the Turkish Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology promotes technological parks and provides their federated startups seed capital in the amount of USD 55 thousand.

The greatest achievements, among public institutions, in the field of startups support has TTGV – Technology Development Foundation of Turkey, which was founded in 1991 with a loan granted by the World Bank Ankara. TTGV mainly supports the most innovative technology projects. To date, the foundation has supported 950 projects in the amount of USD 300 million. The Foundation also had a sizable contribution to creation of two companies supporting startups: Is Girisim and Turkven, which created foundations for investing based on venture capital principles. Since 2000, the two institutions have co-financed entrepreneurs in the amount of more than USD 3.5 billion.

In Turkey, they are also present non-profit organizations with a global reach. One of them is Endeavor, an organization supporting entrepreneurs from around the world which have potentially ‘high firepower’. The organization was founded 1997 in Argentina and Chile. Its purpose is to search for promising entrepreneurs in emerging markets countries. In 2006 it opened a branch in Istanbul. Endeavor looks after, among others, as promising startups from wireless technologies industry as: Pozitron and AirTies. Here also was raised Yemeksepeti – an e-commerce platform through which so successfully is sold fast food served by brands such as: McDonald’s, Burger King or KFC – with delivery to the customer.

Some other notable startups of Turkish startup ecosystem include Onedio, called also “BuzzFeed of Turkey”, social gaming company Peak Games, the largest classified site sahibinden,  huge shopping platforms like hepsiburada.com, n11.comgittigidiyor (which is part of eBay) and Trendyol,  marketing tool Insider,  fintech platform iyzico, taxi-booking app BiTaksi, delivery startup under 1h from nearby places called KapGel etc. We will soon cover the most important startups from Turkey in much more details. Stay tuned!

Increasing control of the Internet in Turkey

Turkey’s parliament passed a law increasing the powers of state to control the Internet. The new rules give it, among others, the right to block websites without judicial decision and the right to access browsing history of chosen citizens.

With the new regulations, the Turkish Telecommunication Authority will now be able to block a website without the court’s consent, if it considers that necessary for “national security, restoration of public order and crime prevention”.

The Turkish Telecommunication Authority will also have access to the history of online activity of selected persons.
The law still requires the signature of the President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The current Internet law in Turkey belongs to the most restrictive ones, anyway. On its basis there have been blocked thousands of websites from sites deemed conducive to the Kurdish separatists to gay men dating sites. In February there were introduced the first changes in the Internet regulations. Critics were then accusing the government led by Erdogan of trying to lock in this way corruption investigations against him and his ministers.

No Cross-Country Roaming Charges from 2015 In: Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania and Turkey

stockimages / www.freedigitalphotos.net

stockimages / www.freedigitalphotos.net

In the meeting recently held in Skopje, Macedonia, representatives of 5 countries: Macedonia, Albania, Turkey, Serbia and Montenegro agreed to start with implementaion of procedures to stop charging users roaming fees in those countries as similar trends are in Europe.  In other words, users will pay same prices in other mentioned countries like they pay in their own country. Ministries of 5 countries will sign agreement on making equal prices of local and roaming talks in Infofest conference, which will be held in Miločer, Montenegro, on 29th September.

 

European accelerator Startupbootcamp opens in Istanbul for MENA region

With the latest news in January, we have a valuable addition coming from the west to the east – EarlyBird, the known venture capital from Berlin directed $130 million to support startups from Central and Eastern Europe. This will be done through the opening of Startupbootcamp Istanbul.

This already formal accelerator will be working on a 3 month program in which it mentors, funds, houses and showcases early startups. The applications are officially open until the end of March, and teams can apply no matter where are they from.

If chosen, startups start their program in June and for only 8% of their equity they are funded by €15,000, 4 months office space and a mentorship program valued at over €250k.

Startupbootcamp Istanbul will also work on a more coworking concept model, by spanning over two floors, open office space and a coffee shop at the lobby.

With this very important investment in startups Turkey will become one of the key areas in the SEEMEA region.