Message from the Honorary President
I was born in 1920 and produced the first Ülker brand biscuit when I
was only 24. Once they used to call us the “young entrepreneurs” and
now I’m very proud that children call me the “biscuit grandpa”.
The times into which I was born were very hard, especially for children. We witnessed wars, disasters and migrations. It was back in those early years when I started to believe that everyone deserves a good childhood and a treat of biscuits, chocolates, or candies in the evenings.
I have experienced some difficult times during my career of more than 50 years as an industrialist. However, having spent my working life ceaselessly producing and creating added value and developing a “global brand” for my country, I do not remember these hard times. What lingers from all these years is tranquility and happiness.
Given the size of Ülker today, I see that the company belongs not only to us – the family, shareholders, and employees – but also to the whole of Turkey. As a Turkish food sector pioneer in the global arena, Ülker products take their place on supermarket shelves in many countries, ranging from the USA to Germany. Of course, this was something I could not even dream of as a young entrepreneur. How could I dream of such a thing in those years, when we even had a hard time finding production equipment? In those years, it was difficult to meet domestic demand, never mind exporting. However, hard work and struggle has allowed us to do just that.
From now on, Ülker’s irreversible goal is to become a world brand and, more importantly, to maintain its position as such. In fact, I wish the same not only for Ülker but for many other Turkish companies. I have seen many companies founded, like Ülker, under very unfavorable conditions. Just as I follow Ülker’s success, I also follow the achievements of Turkey’s other worthy corporations in the international arena and I feel proud and happy for Turkey.
I have always placed emphasis Ülker contributing to our country in the social arena. We have fulfilled our social responsibilities through various ventures concerning education, art, the environment, health, and sport. I am proud and happy to be a founder of TEMA, the Turkish environmental association, just as I am of being the founder of Ülker. Caring for our land, water and environment is the same as caring for our country. I believe that making investments in education and sport is crucial as it is an investment in the future of our youth.
We have grown up with the blessings of Turkey’s Republican Era. The Republic gave us the chance of an education, work and to earn our bread and butter, to increase the number of factories, and to create employment. I hope that our children and youth appreciate these blessings and carry our flag forward. I advise our youth to work hard to improve Turkey’s welfare to the highest international standards. I tell them that, with hard work, patience and ambition, and by remaining humble, they can be successful in whatever they pursue.
I wish every success to succeeding generations.