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Can you talk a little about the work and

the aims of the Business Development


Fatih Can (VP, Business Development):

Tekfen Construction has a Strategic Plan

that outlines its goals for the next five years

and the regions and the sectors in which it

wishes to work. As the Business Develop-

ment Team, we strive to develop concrete

strategies in line with this plan and work

hard to ensure we do not miss any oppor-

tunies. We are constantly trying to turn reli-

able and respected customers’ projects into

concrete business by joining forces with the

right partners.

Uluç Keskin (Head of Business Develop-


As Tekfen Construction, we would

like as many of the projects we bid for to

originate from the Business Development

Department. One can never predict where

the “business” lies. What matters here is hu-

man relations. We represent the company to

the outside world, we are responsible for

presentations, publicity, participation at

conferences and gatherings, and researching

micro- and macro-markets. Even without

any specific target project, we must visit

many countries and scrutinize its general

business environment. Whether it is local or

foreign contractors that are being given the

go ahead, how the country is run, whether

the climate is suitable for us to do business

in… You could say that the foundation of

our work is forming information networks,

being open and confident, being prepared

for lots of travel, being multilingual and able

to easily communicate with others. We fol-

low the market, analyse its dynamics, and

try to predict future development based on

our evaluations. We carry the responsibility

of generating and maintaining sound con-

tacts in line with Tekfen’s goals. Conse-

quently, in terms of preserving a steady

backlog, we do not have the luxury of relax-

ing even for a moment, of falling into com-

placency thinking we already have enough

projects on the go.

Ferda Gürtay (Business Development


One aspect of our work is to

properly maintain our Certificates of Com-

pletion, as those are the records that can be

shown to any management team or employ-

er about projects you did. In order to com-

pete for a public tender, one has to have un-

dertaken similar projects over the last 15

years. Therefore, procuring this certificate

from the relevant office at the end of a proj-

ect is vitally important and we pursue this

work diligently to make sure our records are

up to date and complete. Moreover, all Cer-

tificates of Completion to be used in bids for

public tender up to the beginning of 2018

must be registered and uploaded to the Pub-

lic Procurement Authority. Documents that

have not been registered are not accepted.

We are thus keeping track of our records in

this context too.

With such a wide radar, what are your

sources of information? How do you

stay on track?

Fatih Can:

We read a lot and try not to miss

anything. We keep track of many publica-

tions and also maintain contact with the

management teams we have previously

worked with, and so manage to learn a lot

from them. We are not the only ones looking

for opportunities; our parters and our com-

petitors are out there too. There is no such a

thing as a standard channel or procedure.

We need to look at everything. Our source

may be a visit we have made, or an an-

nouncement for bids for tender. It may even

be somebody walking into the lobby and

saying, “I’m going to have a skyscraper built

in Senegal.” We try to talk to everybody, but

we make sure we are discreet and meticu-

lous when we do so. Because the Tekfen Bid-

ding Department comes in right after us. If

we say yes, they spring into action and will

spend months on preparing a bid, and their

efforts will turn into work and thus employ-

ment for thousands of people.

Is the story about the skyscraper in

Senegal true?

Burak Henden (Senior Business Devel-

opment Engineer):

Information reaches

us via a number of channels. It can be an

email or a telephone call, but whatever it is,

we take each one seriously. The gentleman

Fatih Can mentioned contacted us with ref-

erence from the Council of Commerce at the

Embassy of Senegal in Ankara. We checked

who he was and confirmed he was indeed

from an eminent and well-known Senega-

lese family. He owns a valuable plot of land

in the city centre on which he wants to build

a block of luxury flats and he wanted us to

collaborate with him. We sometimes get

these odd individual cases. But that’s not

that easy. For instance, if we were to do busi-

ness in Senegal, we would need to know ev-

erything we can about the country: where it

is, what kind of country it is, its culture, the

cultural and political climate, its suitability

for business, and so on. For us to be inter-

ested in any project, it must be in line with