In this issue, we discussed the activities, new period and targets of Ayhan ŞİRİNER, Sylvania Middle East, Turkey and CIS Regional President, who has signed fast and successful projects after restructuring in our country.
First of all, in order for our readers to get to know you better; Can you make a brief assessment in terms of your experience in the sector, your point of arrival, your position in the current Sylvania, your position in the global brand, the tasks you undertake, etc.?
In terms of careers, I started this field in 2000 at Philips Lighting in the Netherlands. In my first interview, I wrote a thesis on how philips could gain strategic advantage with 'knowledge management' as an intern at the metalhalide factory in Belgium. Since this thesis was successful, I continued in the position of information manager in the marketing department. After a year, I started working as a marketer in the marketing department again. One of my first tasks was to introduce the LED bulb to the European market in 2005 as marketing manager. At the time, the brand was mostly working towards LED fixtures. He didn't have that much expectations in the lamp. Expectations; In LED technologies, bypassing the lamp was seen more as an integrated solution through the fixture. But at that time, I had prepared a business plan with my team and submitted this report to the CEO at the time. The CEO liked the report and gave us a budget. With this budget, we started to make the products we designed with our own R&D in the factories in Cin and sell them to Europe. In 2008-2010, I was sent to Turkey as a marketing manager. I went back to Holland in 2010. I accepted an offer from another important brand in the lighting industry. At Osram's headquarters in Munich, I was the director of the retail lighting department for Europe and the Middle East. After that, I carried out the launch of OSRAM's fixture products as Asia Pacific Marketing direct in Hong Kong for 3 years. In 2016, I started to work as the President of the Middle East in Sylvania. This road has taken my career back to where it is now.
Can you consider the LED in European markets today, taking into account the work you started in 2005?
When we look at both the Middle East, Turkey and European markets, it is now certain that the LED lamp has become a nightstand product. Although it has no contribution value, it has become a product that is at the top of human needs. That's why he'll always be everywhere. With LED technology, lighting production has become an easy sector. When we look at it, Turkey has become one of the most affected countries. When you add logistical advantages, I think this knowledge and production capability will take us even higher.
Sylvania was a company that had previously entered the market in Turkey but withdrew from the market in 2013 for various reasons. Our main goal here is to make it work. To reinvest the world brand in our country's market with our team that we established with Azim Tuncinar bey in 2017, and we have achieved this. In addition, I would like to express my gratitude to all our customers and especially my team for having Sylvania take a position as a respected company again in the lighting sector in Turkey after taking office.
Our strategy was to introduce ourselves primarily in the commercial channel. After introducing ourselves in terms of brand awareness in the lighting sector, we turned to project-oriented studies. We plan to focus our work on end users, which we are currently showing on the commercial channel. Making Turkey a production base and exporting high value-added products to the surrounding countries stands in front of us as our next biggest strategic goal. We can say that we have made a confident and successful journey along this path.
Do you have any special projects that you have implemented since 2017?
Of course you do. Our Concord branded products stand out at this point. Camlica Mosque, where this product is used, is one of our most important references. In addition, we have carried out madame Tussaud Museum, Istanbul Airport Duty Free Offices, Baku History Museum projects. We are currently in many project partnerships both at home and abroad. We carry out our project-oriented studies in a way that can be done with different products.
In our market of global brands, you have moved Sylvania to a very important point in two years, especially in terms of brand awareness.What could be the reason for the delay in entering the Turkish market of such an important global company?
This was about the company's decision not to expand to other countries other than us. But the most important thing we did here was to "convince" the company officials. Our success in this persuasion process has resulted in both a success story for the company and a very important breakthrough for us. After all, we are now in a pleasing position for both sides.
How do you evaluate the lighting industry (production, information, technical, etc.) in Turkey by taking advantage of your experience abroad?
In particular, we can evaluate the LED sector on two scales: manufacturers before 2009 and manufacturers after 2009. Because LED technology is the main factor in this milestone date. We can see that many companies have just been established or have updated themselves by switching from conventional to LED.We are in cooperation with all our manufacturers as of location. We consider these collaborations important for our country in terms of both investment and growth. Because quality products and long-term work will be in everyone's interest in terms of sustainability. In fact, whether it brings products from China or produces in our country, I think all our companies should make good use of the opportunities to make our country an investment base. I can say that all conditions are advantageous when evaluated for producers. As a result, we can say that our production potential is very high and we have a growing market.
Visionary companies that already have production are our priority. When starting the process, we identify the companies, in the first meeting we look at the status of the factory, procedures, qualification documents, test documents, the existence of legal and regulatory documents. We have a team coming from abroad, they review it as a factory and procedure and present the result to us. They reveal the pros and cons. We offer some kind of counseling. We have not faced any negative reviews so far and we are getting positive feedback.
What are your 2020 goals, will you have new product groups?
In 2020; growing our turnover, expanding our product range with domestic production, exporting more with domestic production especially to the Middle East and achieving our goals in the tender process related to street lighting will be our priorities.