Home hardware giant Baumax to launch 10 stores in Turkey

Today’s Zaman - Baumax, the largest hardware and home improvement store chain in Southeastern Europe, is eying Turkey for new investments, with the Austria-based company planning to open 10 stores in Turkey within two years. Baumax will join Turkey's rising do-it-yourself market competition along with other giants such as Bauhaus, Praktiker, Tekzen, Koctas and IKEA. In an interview with Today's Zaman, Baumax CEO Martin Essl talked about the company's investment plans for Turkey. He said they had been carrying out market research in Turkey for four years and planned to open 10 stores of between 10,000 and 15,000 square meters each by 2009. Essl said the land has already been purchased for stores to be opened in Ankara, Izmir, Izmit, Eskisehir, Bursa and Istanbul and added that three actively working purchasing departments had been established. The Baumax CEO also said each store would employ around 100-150 workers. A total of 1,500 employees will be hired by 2009 and around 100-120 million euros will be invested.