Bayegan was established as a family-owned business by our grandfathers in the 1940s, making it one of the oldest petrochemicals companies in Turkey. My husband is the third generation and the sole owner of the company. The founders were in the paraffin business, as electricity wasn't widespread at the time. One of our grandfathers was on the chemical side while the other was on the polymer side. They got into the petrochemical sector from that point. Back then, the company was only present in the Turkish market and nowhere else. However, when the third generation took over, the company began to open up. We broadened our focus to become a regional distributor, but we quickly realized that we needed to be in China and India, because 40% of the world's population lives there. Thus, we established our China and India offices, and eventually expanded to 23 offices globally. Most of them are not very big—some are just five people—but we think it is important to have a presence, meet people, and see what is happening in all of our markets. This move established Bayegan as the first international Turkish petrochemicals trading company, and we now work along the entire production chain. This puts us at an advantage. Since we operate on all levels of the value chain, we can see how changes in the prices of raw materials can affect the prices of finished products.
General Manager Turkey & Central Asian Republics, Dow
Dow combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world's most challenging problems, such as the need for clean water and renewable energy generation, as well as increasing agricultural productivity. Dow's diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemicals, advanced materials, agro-sciences, and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries in high-growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings, and agriculture. In 2012, Dow had annual sales of approximately $57 billion and employed approximately 54,000 people worldwide. The company manufactures more than 5,000 products at 188 sites in 36 countries. The chemical industry has been active in Turkey for decades. As an energy corridor, Turkey acts as a gateway to landlocked Central Asian and Middle Eastern countries in need of chemical production capacity that links their feedstock to downstream technology and favorable logistics. Today, this $21 billion industry directly employs more than 80,000 skilled professionals. Currently, Dow has one of the largest R&D investments in the global chemical industry—number two globally and number one among American companies.
Country Manager, DuPont Turkey
Our innovation center is a good role model for the industry. We have received good feedback from our customers and the government, as we build up this investment in innovation and further the development of the economy by having innovation on the ground. I believe that the growth of the Turkish economy will come from innovation; that is why making these investments is also encouraging other multinationals to consider making a more positive impact on the country. We also have customers working to understand the concept and the platform that we are using for innovation in Turkey and how they can replicate the same setup for their own businesses. I believe that it is the right time and the right investment. DuPont spends more than $2 billion on R&D annually, and we are spending this money mainly on three major areas: food, energy, and protection. Having these innovation centers will allow us to reach over 10,000 scientists around the globe, as well as 150 R&D centers, through the technology that we have available here. This will allow us to take advantage of DuPont's size to meet the challenges of the market or different markets and to communicate with our scientists and R&D centers the needs of the market and collaborate on different countries, rather just focusing on the challenges that Turkey faces.