World Bulletin/News Desk
Defense technologies will become a “fifth sector” of focus for Turkish conglomerate Koç Holding as the company seeks to tap into a recession-proof global defense industry, a member of the third generation of the Koç business family, Ali Koç, said on Thursday.
“There is big potential in defense. On land and sea there are big projects,” Koç told reporters at a press conference on Thursday evening. Koç said that defense would “join the four key sectors” of Koç's business empire, which he said were energy, finance, durable consumer goods and automotive production.
The comments come at the close of the International Defence Industry Fair this week in İstanbul, where Koç's defense subsidiary, Otokar, showcased a wide range of tracked and armored vehicles. Those vehicles included the domestically produced Altay tank, which Otokar officials said would enter production for the Turkish military some time in 2017.
“Consumers are being hit directly by the crisis. But because defense has nothing to do with consumers… there isn't any risk,” he said. Koç's RMK Marine Shipyard also won a key construction contract for the Milgem national warship project in January, a project which analysts have valued at $2.5 billion. RMK Marine is slated to build six of the domestically designed corvettes for the navy.
Ali Koç's promise that Koç would focus on defense followed a declaration this week by the conglomerate's chairman, Mustafa Koç, that the holding would focus on African investments.
The group, which has for decades held back on any major operations in African nations, would “expand into the African energy market by focusing on electricity production,” Koç told Bloomberg HT.Last Mod: 11 Mayıs 2013, 09:48