FINANCIAL INVESTMENTS & STARTUPS

Image of Startup Ecosystem​​
Türkiye’s technological capabilities, supported by the ongoing reform process and customized incentives, have altogether created a thriving startup ecosystem in Türkiye over the years. The Turkish startup ecosystem has all the key stakeholders in place, ranging from business angel networks to venture capital (VC) and private equity funds on the funding side, and from accelerators to technoparks, mentors and the government agencies on the supporting side.

  • Türkiye has a population of 84.7 million, with a median age of 33.1, giving the country the largest youth pool in the EU.
  • Türkiye boasts one of the largest talent pools in Europe and in the MENA region with more than 1 million university graduates per year, including over 75,000 engineering and engineering trade graduates.
  • This growing population is both digitally connected and active as evidenced by the fact that Türkiye is the 6th largest market for Instagram, 7th largest market for Twitter, 9th largest market for TikTok, 12nd largest market for YouTube, 14th largest market for LinkedIn, and the 14th largest market for Facebook globally. Furthermore, Türkiye is the 7th largest market for mobile apps, based on the total number of app downloads. With these figures, Türkiye proves to be a perfect production and testing ground for technology developers.
  • In less than two years, the Turkish startup ecosystem created one decacorn, Trendyol, and three unicorns, Peak Games, Getir and Dream Games.
  • In 2021, 294 startups raised a total of USD 1.6 billion from angel investors and VCs, setting a new record for the ecosystem. Türkiye became the 10th in Europe and the 2nd in the MENA region in terms of startup investments.
  • In 2021, as for capital raising, grocery delivery, gaming, proptech, fintech and blockchain were the leading verticals, whereas gaming, artificial intelligence, deeptech, fintech and healthtech led the number of deals.
  • ​In 2021, the gaming sector became the center of attraction, with 52 deals worth a total of USD 265 million. Dream Games alone raised USD 205 million, making it the largest-ever funding deal in Türkiye for a gaming startup, while also becoming the fastest startup to become a unicorn. In January 2022, Dream Games raised another USD 255 million in a Series-C funding round, bringing its total valuation to USD 2.75 billion.
  • In the grocery delivery sector, Getir received USD 983 million of investment in its three rounds of Series-B, C, and D in 2021. In the last round finalized in June 2021, Getir’s valuation reached USD 7.5 billion.
  • E-commerce platform Trendyol received Türkiye’s largest-ever investment in the maturity stage. A consortium of private equity investors acquired a 9.09 percent stake in Trendyol for USD 1.5 billion, which carried Trendyol’s value to USD 16.5 billion and made it Türkiye’s first decacorn.
  • Amongst European cities raising the most capital, Istanbul ranked 13th, and 4th in terms of number of investments. In the MENA region, Istanbul ranked 2nd behind Tel Aviv in terms of both number of deals and total investment.
  • Türkiye expects more unicorns to emerge in the near future with the backing of a mature startup ecosystem, a large and young population with high-tech penetration rates, an affordable and competent developer pool, an increasing investment trend in diverse industries, and successful exits to global companies.
  • International financial investors are very welcomed to invest in the Turkish startup ecosystem, either directly or through funds to benefit from the next successful exit rounds. 

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