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Limak Holding Chairman of Board of Directors: Nihat Özdemir

Limak Holding Chairman of Board of Directors: Nihat Özdemir

“We enjoy working with Turkish and foreign partners that add strenght to partnerships. We both share the risks and combine forces, in order to reach perfection.”

» Interview | Friday, April 29, 2011 • Air News Times

We spoke with Limak Holding Chairman of Board of Directors Nihat Özdemir about their new investments and targets on sectoral basis, starting out with Sabiha Gökçen Airport

GQ: What made you decide to steer for aviation industry? How would you review your current situation in aviation industry and what are your targets?

NO: Limak is actually an undertaking-based company. However, in time we have steered for areas such as cement, tourism, energy production and food. Furthermore, we have widely performed constructions of the hotels we own, the energy projects that we possess the production licence of, and our fruit juice concentrate plant. In the most general sense, Sabiha Gökçen Airport is a star project among our infrastructure investments...

The tender of Sabiha Gökçen Airport coincided with the time when we wanted to get out of our construction shell and gravitate towards infrastructure investments. There had been very successful airport privatizations and the airport in an attraction center like İstanbul was to be very important.

We became partners with MAHB, operator of Malaysia Airports, and with one of the biggest infrastructure investors of India, GMR, which operates Delhi and Hyderabad airports; following these partnerships we have won the tenders. We completed the construction of the new terminal building and its complementaries in a record time like 18 months, and put to service. We have taken over Pristina Airport at the beginning of April; we are going to build a new terminal there. Also, we are keeping a tab on other airport tenders worldwide.  


GQ: Have been operating in construction, cement and tourism areas for many years, Limak Group is now going for investments in aviation, energy and transportation sectors as well. How do you evaluate the potential in these sectors?

NO: This is a crucial question and, in my opinion, has a very obvious answer. Turkey is developing, its gross domestic product is increasing day by day… Energy consumption per capita is still lower than European Union and OECD countries. So are the flight numbers… In 2002, the total number of air passengers was 33 million. In 2010 this number was over 100 million, and 2023 target is 375 million. Great tasks are being performed in Turkey. Thus, sizable infrastructure investments are needed.

There is still a long way for Turkey to reach 2023 targets. We need to perform various energy investments; build ports, airports, road and railroads. Turkey’s export target for 2023 is 500 billion dollars, and its target for number of tourists is 50 million. Investments to fulfil these are needed. These tasks will be completed via ‘build operate transfer’ model, and as Limak we want to exist as an active investor both in Turkey and in the region.   


GQ: Limak Investment within the body of Limak Group is now getting ready for public offerings. Can you please share with us Limak Investment’s field of activities and the present situation regarding public offerings?

NO: We have energy production projects which we chose with great care. We currently have 13 HEPP projects and one geothermal project in Limak Investment. In addition to these, as you know, we are partners to Uludağ and Çamlıbel Electric Distribution regions. These energy production, electric distribution and energy trade companies are parts of our public offerings.

Apart from that, our ISG share which, undertook the operation of one of our significant projects İstanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport; Pristina Airport; and İskenderun Port which, last year we won the tender of and has a progressing transfer process; are also within the body of our company that will be offered to public. In short, we can say that our infrastructure projects are being offered to public. As for the present situation regarding public offering, I can say that we are carrying on our works at a fast pace. In brief; energy production, distribution and trade, airports, ports and hopefully highways will take place within this company…


GQ: As far as we keep track from the press, second generation of the family and professionals will coexist in Limak Investment. Can you inform us about the management philosophy here?

NO: This is a correct evaluation. Family’s second generation and professionals are managing these tasks together. All family members of the second generation started working at the lowest levels and they all have been working as a team with the professionals of the company. Decisions are made collectively in all our companies, everybody states their opinion, ideas on all subjects are exchanged and then a decision is made. Once settled, all company bodies work with might and main, aiming for success. Our greatest philosophy in Limak is to work, work and work…


GQ: What kind of field investments are you aiming for, both as Limak Investment and Limak Group? Are you planning to enter new sectors?

NO: We have been flourishing in construction; undertaking projects both in Turkey and overseas. Except for the ongoing pipeline project in Saudi Arabia, we have entered upon another one. Also, we have placed the best offer for the second terminal in Egypt, which will be constructed in Cairo International Airport.

We completed the buying of Set Cement and have become the third biggest cement group in Turkey. Regarding infrastructure investments, we acquired preliminary qualification for Kosovo electric distribution project; we are performing activities in Medina Airport; again we acquired preliminary qualification for road projects in Macedonia. In tourism field, we opened a new thermal hotel in Yalova, and Eurasia in İstanbul Kavacık; and our investment in Cyprus is in progress. As Limak, we say continue investing, do not stop…

We aim to become a major actor not only in Turkey, but also in the region.  


GQ: In Limak, you have a successful partnership and a long term friendship with Honourable Sezai Bacaksız. What are the underlying facts?

NO: Sezai Bacaksız and I were class mates at the university. We established Limak together in 1976. We take every decision in Limak jointly. We worked around the clock with him to bring Limak to these days, and still we continue working for this together. The most important underlying fact is the trust between us.

We have been friends for 40 years and partners for 35 years. Now, our children are into this business and together with them, we will advance Limak…


GQ: You work with various foreign partners in different investments. What kind of advantages does collaborating with foreigners provide to Turkish companies?

NO: Yes, we work with numerous domestic and foreign partners. Regarding Sabiha Gökçen Airport project, we are partners with MAHB, operator of Malaysia Airports, and with one of the biggest infrastructure investors of India, GMR. In Pristina Airport, we are partners with Lyon Airport. In Medina, we will place an offer as Saudi Binladin Group, Bouygues Batiment International, Limak Investment, Aeroports de Paris Management and Mapa Construction. We enjoy working with Turkish and foreign partners that add strenght to partnerships.
We both share the risks and combine forces, in order to reach perfection.


GQ: As a prominent name of the business world, what would you suggest to young businessmen?

Work, work and work more… Team game is highly important. Be a good team member and work hard…

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Yorumunuzu Sendin

Bulent write

2/12/2012 11:38:40 PM

Dear Mr.Ozdemir,
Do you have an e-mail adress , how can I reach to you..
Tüm Yorumları Okumak İçin tıklayın

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