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This article is written by Milambo Kabeleka, a Contributor Author at Startup Turkey.
Inventram is one of the largest hi-tech investment companies in the world. It provides finance and management support for innovative ideas and projects coming from entrepreneurs, inventors and SMEs. It is working with innovative paradigm shifters, for Turkey
An interview with Cem Soysal, its CEO gave us a peak into Inventram and how entrepreneurs can benefit from them.
Q: Tell us a little about how you got to this point and how you started as an entrepreneur?
A: When I have an idea,I just start, prove and grow it and when the business grows, I try y to make sure I end up with some gain, either a sells growth, or a profit growth.
Q: Would you like to share why it was important to bring to life that idea and how the beginnings of that?
A: We were very fortunate from day one to be backed by the largest group of Turkey, it gave us a strong leverage to do business make your name strong and execute your business plan.
Since 2010, Inventram has had 5500projecs and companies, we have completed 6 equity investments and 40 patents environment.
Q: How has partnering with Koç University helped you?
A: Koç University houses great faculty, great professors from reputable schools in the United States, all equipped with knowledge on specific products.
We started an incubation center with them and have spread out to other leading universities. These partnerships have resulted in some amazing hi-tech projects in disruptive areas such as robotic hand sensitivity technology.
Q: Is there a particular technology in Turkey that you are excited about? 12.00
A: Turkey has more than 2.million companies and 99.8% are SMEs. As an emerging country, it should have a robust entrepreneurial backbone. Because more 72% of the sales revenue is executed by these SMEs. All the more reason for these SMEs to invest in disruptive technologies for them to exist in the new tech ecosystem and attract other countries to invest.
Q: What do you feel is preventing the Turkish entrepreneurial ecosystem from reaching its full potential?
A: Turkey has very qualified professionals, but the capital is not as deep as the US. If all the building blocks are put together, Turkish startups will be able to attract more funding from already thriving ecosystems like the States. Currently, Biotech and Mobile technologies are most desired technologies of today.
In the end the Turkish entrepreneurs have to be helped with funding, and business knowledge, customer management, pipeline management and sales.
Q: is there more that the Turkish ecosystem can do to develop those business skills and help the Startups take off quicker?
A: Turkey is still in its early steps compared to other countries. The entrepreneurs have to be provided with financing, funding, incubation, and selling skills.
Q: What advice would you give Turkish investors who want to invest in Turkish companies and what would you say to Turkish entrepreneurs who want to go global?
A: One common thing that successful entrepreneurs have is a saying that; 100 hours a week is amount of time they put into working on their businesses. One has to have the passion and commitment to put in the hours to make the business work. Also, you have to be aware of your customer’s wants, because at the end of day, the customer dictates how your money comes in.