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ERSU ABLAK > Turkey’s soaring market

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Turkey’s digital market is soaring. Actually the whole of the Eurasian digital market is on the rise. Russia and Kazakhstan are enjoying double digit growths and Azerbaijan is also following the trend. Yet Turkey is a more sophisticated market than the rest of Eurasia. There are more firms, different applications and better businesses here than seen elsewhere.

According to PWC’s Global Entertainment and Media Outlook 2012-2016 the Turkish digital market will keep on growing by at least 9.8 percent to reach $16.1 billion.

Since the numbers are really good the Turkish Internet has attracted attention from all over the world. Perform Group plc, a UK-based digital media company, has acquired a majority stake in Mackolik Internet Hizmetleri Ticaret A.S., a Turkey-based owner and operator of sports websites, including mackolik.com and sahadan.com.

As part of the consideration, Perform Group is acquiring an initial 51 percent stake in Mackolik for cash consideration of 40.8 million Turkish Liras ($22.42 million). This initial payment will be made out of Perform’s existing cash resources. In addition, Perform Group will acquire the remaining 49 percent for cash, based on an agreed 10 times multiple calculation of the average full year audited EBITDA results of the business for the years ending Dec. 31, 2014 and 2015 weighted 25 percent and 75 percent, respectively, with maximum additional consideration payable in March 2016 of up to 60.4 million British Pounds.

Mackolik has been acquired from the two founders and three private investors. Following the completion of the acquisition, Mackolik’s founders Erdem Yurdanur and Tarkan Onar will retain the remaining 47 percent of shares in the business, with the three private investors exiting. Two percent of the shares will be held by an Istanbul-based financial services advisory firm Odin Financial Advisors.

Yandex, Russia’s leading search engine, has announced the appointment of Mehmet Ali Yalçındağ as Chairman of the Board of Yandex Turkey, the company’s subsidiary in Turkey. Yalçındağ will supervise, in a non-executive capacity, strategic development of Yandex Turkey and help enhance Yandex’s brand awareness amongst Turkish internet users. Yandex established a presence in Turkey in September 2011.

“Yalçındağ’s experience and contributions to the Turkish media and entertainment industries will help Yandex expand our knowledge of the Turkish market and further customize our products to meet the needs and expectations of our users in Turkey. We are happy to welcome Yalçındağ to our team,” says Yandex’s founder and CEO Arkady Volozh.

Yandex is making a very clever move to get Yalçındağ on board as he has very strong ties to Turkey’s leading content generation conglomerate. Furthermore, he is a very experienced leader in his field.
The attention being paid to the Turkish digital scene should be taken seriously by the government. I hope that new measures will be taken to support internet based entrepreneurship. The authorities should realize that investing in the digital world will have remarkable benefits and will prove to be one of the best ways to cut down unemployment rates.

July/12/2012

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