Conversations with Turkey's Career Pioneers - İlker Keremoğlu

This week’s guest on our Career Pioneers Talk was STFA Holding Chairman of the Board İlker Keremoğlu. Mr. Keremoğlu, who started his talk by introducing himself, said that he started working as a sales representative at Efes Pilsen, one of the lowest positions there, after graduating from TED College, and Middle East Technical University Faculty of Economic and Administrative Sciences. After 12 years, he became the CEO of the company. Mr. Keremoğlu indicated that he specialized in international finance, macro economist and development economies of countries, and said that with the boredom of continuously doing the same job, at the age of 50 he decided to move onto another line of business.

Mr. Keremoğlu, said that he decided to start at an institution which he had no knowledge of or affinity with, and talked about his period of transition to SFTA, the first construction company doing business abroad. He talked about access to energy resources, and how the natural gas balance in the world has shifted. Stating that he worked as a volunteer and manager at several non-governmental organizations, Keremoğlu said that becoming a successful manager or entrepreneur has nothing to do with university grades. However, he said that knowing a language well, being proficient in using computers, and hard work is not enough and that it is not possible to succeed by just sitting and doing nothing. He indicated that their university provides a vision, but the rest is up to them and the degree to which they educate themselves. He underlined that patience, honesty and empathy are important skills in every part of the world.

Mr. Keremoğlu ended his talk by answering student questions on topics such as electrical power, solar power, and Akkuyu power plant.