ODTÜ TEKNOKENT, Turkey’s leading organization in the field of entrepreneurship, develops programs that provide examples with its vision and ensure development of entrepreneurship ecosystem since its foundation.
New Ideas New Jobs
New Ideas New Jobs (Yeni Fikirler Yeni İşler – YFYİ) is Turkey’s first and biggest technology-based entrepreneurship program organized by ODTÜ and ODTÜ TEKNOKENT since 2005 with the support of Elginkan Foundation. The program ensured establishment of more than 50 technology companies in 10 years. In general, targeting at the university students, new graduates and entrepreneurs who have set up a new company, YFYİ receive more than 1,000 applications annually in many categories, especially General and Information; and provide entrepreneurs with cash prizes and US Camp special prizes in all categories. All prizes are financed by leading contest sponsors in their sector. The successful entrepreneurs also have the opportunity to open to the world markets through ODTÜ TEKNOKENT San Francisco T-Jump Center. Within the scope of the program, entrepreneur candidates are provided with training in many fields that they will need and with mentorship support by the experienced businessmen, investors and high-level executives. The competition ends with a magnificent final ceremony attended with participation 1,000 people each year.
The BİGG TeknoSTART project is an effective and sustainable space where entrepreneurs transform business ideas into business plans. It was designed with the aim of carrying out as the applying organization the 1st stage activities of the program which was previously known as 1512 but was revised by TÜBİTAK in 2015 and turned into Individual Young Enterprise (BİGG) support.
It provides the intensive training, mentoring and consultancy support necessary for the entrepreneurs to transform business ideas that are focused on technology and innovation into qualified work plans and to prepare appropriate business plans for the 2nd stage applications where they can receive 150.000 TL support.
In its first year, the TeknoSTART program received more than 1,000 applications and accepted more than 180 entrepreneurs.
ATOM (Animation Technologies and Game Development Center), the first pre-incubation center in Turkey, entered service in 2008 for the purpose of encouraging entrepreneurship among university students, and so that the entrepreneurial students can develop their ideas and projects in the field of game software, and build their own companies.
The complex consists of 600 m2 open office space and meeting halls, providing students with the infrastructure, superstructure, trainings and joint project development opportunities they need to develop games, animation and simulation. The ultimate goal is to be able to create an ecosystem in Turkey where new companies have been established in the university-industry cooperation, and the experienced human resources are trained for the sector.
More than 1,000 developers from 65 different project groups and young entrepreneurs have been served within the scope of ATOM. More than 300 games have been developed by these entrepreneurs and groups and more than 40 million gamers were reached.
TeknoJUMP Hızlandırma Programı
First organized in 2013 with the support of the Ministry of Economy, TeknoJUMP is Turkey’s first and most successful international acceleration program. In two years, 30 companies participated in the Turkey program while 15 companies participated in the US program.
Companies that are entitled to participate in the Turkey program first participate in advanced company trainings and receive consultancy, mentorship and “CEO in Residence” services from the sector experts who are assigned to them. Companies that are entitled to participate in the US program are selected after the “Demo Day” where they meet with investors and business leaders from the sector.
TeknoJUMP’s USA program is held at ODTÜ TEKNOKENT San Francisco T-Jump Center. At the beginning of the program, the trainings and mentorship support peculiar to the US market are provided. In the rest of the program, companies carry out activities that will help them grow up and become international. The USA program ends with a “Demo Day” again which is presented before the investors.
In two years, TeknoJUMP provided tangible benefits to the companies at the value $35 million, including investment and customer agreements.
From Turkey to Silicon Valley
InfoDif Software was founded in 2007 with the slogan of “Information Diffusion” as a company that believes that the information brings success as long as it is shared. In 2013 we went to Silicon Valley with TeknoJUMP and we got the opportunity to meet with mentors who guided in terms of productization/expanding overseas and with whom we have established permanent partnerships. Now, we continue our efforts to open up to the US market with our mentors.
İnfoDİF, Kerem Çalışkan
TEKNOKENT’s “Famous” Face: Onedio
When I was a student at ODTÜ in 2005, my friend and I had an idea of automatically registering matches in astro turfs and participated in New Ideas New Jobs (Yeni İşler Yeni Fikirler). Currently, this project has turned into a human tracking and analysis system that operates in more than 5,000 locations in 35 countries all over the world. Then we established another successful initiative, Onedio, with the support of ODTÜ TEKNOKENT.
Onedio, Kaan Kayabalı
The primary goal of ODTÜ TEKNOKENT “T-Jump San Francisco Center” opened in San Francisco, USA, which is the first example of Turkey in its field and accepted as the heart of entrepreneurship, is to develop technology exportation, create internationally successful companies and speed up the investment and business development processes of these companies. Within this context, it is also aimed to ensure internationalization of the companies by taking the sales and marketing departments of the enterprises in Turkey to the USA and to influence Turkish or foreign companies which have grown/received investments in the US ecosystem in order to make R&D investments especially in Turkey.
T-Jump offers the entrepreneurs in Turkey possibilities of officially easy access to the USA, access to the San Francisco network and easy adaptation to the ecosystem. By this way, it is much easier for entrepreneurs to follow the markets they are in, to develop their business and ideas, to grow, to acquire new customers and to receive investments. The US legs of programs organized by ODTÜ TEKNOKENT are also organized in the center.
A Fantastic Entrepreneurship Story: ATOM
The Rop and Hocus games that we developed at ATOM were among the most downloaded games in the Apple App Store in many countries and became a major success story by exceeding 5 million downloads in total. ATOM was with me when I wrote the first sentence of the first paragraph of the development section of a fantastic story. The best part of the job is that we are in the third paragraph, and it still deals with the story when I’m stuck.
Gamebra.in, Yunus Ayyıldız
Turkey’s Gateway to Silicon Valley
T-Jump became a gateway to Silicon Valley for Turkey in every sense. They say, “Even if the science is in China, go and get it”. It is really necessary to go and live in order to understand some cultures and ways of doing business. With T-Jump, you can take your initiative to the international dimension.
Chain, Kemal Apaydın
Kurumsal Gelişim ve Girişimcilik Direktörü
Kaynak: ODTÜLÜ Sayı 58 Ekim – Aralık 2015