Turkish technology giant Vestel exits Russian market
Elif Ergü – BARCELONA
AA photoTurkish electronics and domestic appliances maker Vestel closed down its factory in Russia, citing the country’s 2014 financial crisis.
“We had closed down the factory before the Nov. 24  jet crisis erupted. ... We will move the machines. We are looking for a place abroad but we may move the factory to Turkey too” said Vestel CEO Turan Erdoğan, adding that their search for a new location for the factory is ongoing. Vestel was producing TVs in Russia.
Although Vestel’s exit from the Russian market developed independent from the jet crisis between Turkey and Russia, many Turkish companies have been exiting Russia after the economic and political relations between the two countries deteriorated severely.
On Nov. 24, 2015, Turkey shot down a Russian fighter jet for violating its airspace despite repeated warnings.
Following the downing, Russia imposed several sanctions on Turkey that caused the trade and tourism relations between two countries to hit rock bottom. Recently Turkish Fiba Holding’s Credit Europe Bank exited the Russian market due to the bleak future of Turkish businesses in Russia.
Erdoğan’s statements about the closure of Vestel’s Russia factory came during his speech at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, which Vestel has been participating in for three years.
“We are doing talent hunting in these fairs… Look at Apple and Samsung, they do not develop any new technologies themselves. In order to renew their technologies, they buy start-ups then develop them,” said Erdoğan citing recent predictions that technology fairs will turn into entrepreneur fairs in the coming years.
MWC also hosts a sub-fair called “4 YearsFromNow” (4YFN) where young talents introduce their start-up businesses.