An interview is had with General Manager of Cesur Packaging Company, Cihan Cesur, that has strengthened the management and relations of offices in foreign markets with CPM Export Module.
Can we get to know you and your company?
I was born in Istanbul in 1974. I completed my undergraduate education at Koc University and my master education at Berkley in America. I am working at Cesur Packaging Company since year 2000. I was assigned at various tasks in the company and now I am the company general manager. Cesur Packaging is a family company that was established in year 1963. Main activity of company is related with production of big bags. Besides they also have two separate activities in the production of airbags and staple fibers. Big bags are produced for big and heavy loads in industrial packaging class. Our production facilities are situated in Kartal and we are realizing production on a closed area of 50.000 square meters. 1250 people are working together with us. Our airbag production factory is located in Kastamonu.
In which sectors are you providing services and to which countries are you realizing exports?
Generally, we are providing services for food, medicine and chemistry sectors. The biggest one among the sectors we provide services is chemistry sector. Food industry follows up the chemistry sector. Hence big bags are also used in much cheaper sectors such as construction sector. We mostly prefer to produce products with value addition for food and chemistry sectors. Currently we are the third biggest producer in Europe. We realize 65% of our exports to Western Europe, 10% of our exports to domestic market, 25% of our remaining exports to North America, North Africa and some of it to South America.
You are a company that continues to grow abroad as well. How do you evaluate the global packaging sector?
Packaging sector is a sector that grows all the time. Because there is a certain growth in the world as well. As production increases, there is always a need for packaging. Besides expectations relating with quality of packaging are also increasing. There are especially very serious certification needs in food and chemistry sectors. On each passing day we are receiving requests from our customers for different packaging types that would create solutions for their own problems. We are a very proactive company in that respect. We attach high importance to R&D studies. There are many patents belonging to our company. I can state that we are providing solution partnership to our customers regarding this subject as well.
One of the biggest features of our company is that it has established its own sales net organization abroad as well. We can provide our product and services to final user through our sale net in an easy way. We currently have offices in Holland, Belgium, France, England, Germany, and America. We are improving our relations with our customers with the channel of our sales marketing team in our offices.
How do you evaluate the packaging sector and market in Turkey?
It is a growing market. It is a market where there is dense competition as it grows. Standards are increasing in Turkey just like in abroad. We are seeing that our customer is getting more conscious each day. Their requests for certification and accreditation are increasing. I can state that when we compare with foreign market, our parameters show parallelism.
In your journey which you have started as a family company, you have become one of the first 1000 exporters in Turkey. During this growth process, what kind of difficulties where you confronted with during planning and management processes? During this process, how did you decide to work with CPM?
One of the biggest problems relating with growth was related with establishment of human resources and team. We are a company that believes in people. It took time for us to bring our team to a certain point. Apart from this, as foreign markets were opening, stage of establishing offices is very important for us. Establishing new offices at the markets that we don’t know is a significantly difficult process for us. It is needed for offices to be seriously supported for the first three to four years time and you need put in big efforts to introduce your name. I could state that development of technology has facilitated our works despite difficulties. What is important in business life is to decide quickly, to decide correctly and to be efficient. For this issue, technological investment is a very important particular. It is very important to interpret the data in our hands quickly and to bring them into life and to take decisions and regarding this subject I can state that CPM provided big support for us.
What kind of advantages did the export module provide to you? What has changed in your company?
Together with the export module, we made serious advancement relating with our relations with our offices. It became facilitated to follow up the offices. Besides I can say that they have made contributions for our stock planning.
What are your future plans relating with your company?
We are wishing to expand our sales marketing net abroad even further. In accordance we are planning to make new expansions in the markets where we are not active. Our company has a plan for the future to make production in a geography outside Turkey. We especially wish to develop our American market and within the context of our plan to pass to production stage, we are analyzing various countries that are situated close to America. Because giving service provision to our customers together with packaging production is a big part of our business. Our customers expect us to supply the products in a fast way and for us to answer to their needs quickly. In order to be close to our customers, we are targeting to go beyond geographical borders and to go outside Turkey with respect to production.
What are your opinions about viewpoint of companies in Turkey regarding trading and about their potentials?
Turkey is unbelievably active and very successful in packaging sector. It has developed itself and it has achieved a lot. We can state that Turkey is one of the pioneering countries in Europa regarding packaging sector. At each fair I am attending, I am seeing Turkish companies and I am being proud of our country.
Can you allocate time for yourself during your dense working tempo? What do you enjoy to do?
I love to do sports and to travel a lot. Apart from my work, I allocate my time to these activities in general.