Anadolu Group operates in 9 sectors including beer, soft drinks, retail, agriculture, automotive, stationery, fast food restaurant, real estate and energy. The group, which took part in retail sector in past year, and n Kipa, continues to invest in new investments. The Executive Board of group operating in 19 countries in January 2017, Hurit Zorlu, which was founded by Yazici and Özilhan families of Anadolu Group, which is 60 years ago, is conducting merger operation. The Anatolian group, which has recently established Turkey's largest orchard, has been leading beverage and beer industry with foreign partnerships in Turkey and in different geographies of world, is also expanding its targets in agriculture. We chatted with executive President Hurit Zorlu, who noted that Anatolian group would be 10 million fruit trees in 2025.
70 percent outside
Anadolu Group is a group of long-time activities abroad. Are you growing more overseas now?
-We are growing in Turkey and abroad. The beginning of Anatolian group's international breakthroughs was on side of beer and soft drinks. We were operating in different areas like beer, automobile. "Why don't we do what we know well abroad?" We have invested in Russia and Romania. Then we started investing in Kazakhstan, South Russia, Kırgizistan. In 1995-1996, we started beverage business. Beer investments have also begun in 1998. The beverage side has become a multi-country structure. We've been growing up since that time. We are in 10 countries in Coca Cola on soft drink side and 6 in Birada. The volumetric is 50 percent of beverage business, and 70 percent of beer business is abroad.
You have a lot of foreign partners, you have a new partnership in beverage business. What are your growth plans?
-We have partnerships in genes of group, printer family and Özilhan family are partners. Finally, we partnered with Anheuser Bush (AB InBev) in beer business. We are partners with Coca Cola Company in beverage business, car Isuzu, Brazilian Cutrale in agriculture.
You sold Komili. You came out of olive oil production and focused on fruit business. What's your target?
-We believe future is in agriculture. Cutrale is world's largest producer of orange juice, also owned by Cichita bananas. We have our own farm and contracted farmers in fruit business, a job that affects lives of thousands of people. We get 150 thousand tons of fruit from villages. Our farms are governed by latest technology. For example re is a propeller against frost. There's a UV filter on farms to make it better than sun. Your farms are smart. Every tree is being chased by hand terminals.
26 billion lira turnover
2016 's been hard. Have you ever been impressed?
-because we are operating in different areas, influences are also different. We continued to grow. We closed 2016 with 26 billion lira combined turnover. In 2017, we will grow by 10 per cent as a group. In automotive field, our Grande and market chains are growing much more. We are second largest player in beverage industry in Russia. We are market leader after Turkey in legitimacy of or countries in Pakistan. We're doing our seventh factory re.
Does it continue to invest?
Definitely. We also enter production of Italian Landini tractors. We have an investment of around 500 million a year.
You have investors, you have foreign partners. Your foreign partners are not impressed with what happened?
-Business world I think our ambassadors. Strangers are asking us what's going on. We need to do embassy mission well. They want to hear from you how real situation of Turkey will be affected by se macroeconomic conditions. If you don't give enough information, it can also be misunderstood. Turkey is far less fragile than 15 years ago. Although re are many things at same time, 2001 crisis cannot be compared. Domestic consumption is very strong in Turkey. But current deficit and debts affect companies. But if you're a successful group, if your partners believe in you, re's always a way out. Companies don't give up ir long-term strategies. It happened in 2008. There's a landing in 3-4 a year. Companies need to establish long-term strategies. We are able to fight as a country with short-term problems.
The U.S. visa crisis affects exchange rates. More importantly, it disrupts morale...
-We believe that visa issue will be solved, Euro-dollar increase affects everyone. It's been in past. After all, se things are focusing after a while. We tell strangers our country conditions. For example, Russian crisis, tourism was very impressed. Some sectors are more affected. If plans are long and medium-term and no major changes are needed to continue. We continued to invest during Russian crisis. In 1998, everyone was running away, we invested.
Target 10 million fruit trees in agriculture
The Anatolian group, which began its initial investments in agriculture in 2010, is growing in cooperation with Özgörkey Holding and Brazilian Cutrale group in this area. Tahirova Farm, Turkey's largest organic apple farm in Balikesir established in Konya Karapinar. In 6 different regions, re were 7 fruit farms in 25 thousand Dekar fields. The farms located in Canakkale, Balikesir, Denizli, Urfa, Mersin and Konya have 3.5 million fruit trees. For first time, some fruit seedlings were brought to Turkey by Anatolian stage and experimental gardens were also established. The adaptation of region (climate and soil) continues to work. With acquisition of fruits that meet high quality criteria of Anatolian Etap in Turkey, fruit juice is concentrated and mashed production is being produced. 3 factories, 1 fruit packaging plant and 2800 employees in 7 farms in summer months of Anatolian Etap, number of employees in farms has passed 2000. 70 percent of workers in gardens are women. In 2016, it was most fruit-processing company in Turkey by processing 180 thousand tonnes of fruit collected from 3,000 villages.
Migros will grow twice in four years
You took Migros in 2016. You grow up fast. The number of Migros is also increasing, Macro Marketller. Will you continue to carry out your Migros operation abroad?
-Migros is an important investment for us. We got Kipa after Migros. We're out of small business in this process. Our retail business will grow. In 2016, our domestic sales growth reached about 20 percent compared to previous year. In 2016 we exceeded our targets with 232 new store that we added to our store portfolio. After purchase of Kipa end of June store number was 1844. We aim to double our greatness in four years.
How many employees do you have in markets?
-Over 27 thousand. We will employ 5,000 500 people this year with new stores. If growth persists, we will reach 45 thousand employees in 1 year.
2.5 Billion dollar merger
Anadolu Group has been decided to collect under a roof of Yazıcı holding, Özilhan Sinai investment and Anadolu Endustri holding. For a year, se operations have been conducted to collect under same roof. "For 60 years, Partners Group has brought this point as two family companies," Hurşit Zorlu. With merger printers holding and Özilhan industrial investment and Anadolu Endustri holding will be largest public company. When all Anatolian group companies are under same roof, balance sheet will be size. A merger of 2.5 billion dollars with today's market values. "
Who is Hurşit Zorlu
Hurşit, who worked in Anadolu Group for 33 years, studied in different countries due to his far's duties in a challenging childhood. After graduating from Istanbul University Faculty of Economics, after working on different jobs for a short period of time in 1984, he entered Ephesus Beverage Group and made financial affairs presidency of Anadolu Group between 2008-2013 years. Zorlu Anadolu Holding says "My second family".