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Rui Barros

SVP & Managing Director Europe, Middle East & Africa, Wyndham Hotel Group

Alaeddin Babaoglu

President & CEO, Amplio Real Estate Investments

Gianluca Laterza

Territory Manager Italy, Greece, Turkey, Cyprus and Malta, TripAdvisor

Kaan Kavaloğlu

General Coordinator, Limak International Hotels & Resorts

Özgür Özaslan

Undersecretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture , Turkey

Wolfgang M. Neumann

President & CEO, The Rezidor Hotel Group

Frank RoccoGrande

Senior Managing Director and Partner, BLG Capital

Murat Yilmaz

Senior Director, Acquisition & Development Central & Eastern Europe, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

Ece Tonbul

Executive Board Member, Paloma Hotels

Christian Michel

Vice President Development Central & Eastern Europe, Wyndham Hotel Group

Goktug Özdemir

Chief Executive Officer, GO Project Management and Construction

David Vely

Senior Vice President Development Middle East, Africa & India, Premier Inn International

Şenay Azak-Matt

General Manager - Turkey, Aareal Bank Group

Angela Brav

Chief Executive, Europe, IHG

Murat Ersoy

Chief Executive Officer, AtlasJet

Nilsun Tümer

Country Coordinator Turkey, PKF hotelexperts

Mike Collini

Vice President Development – Turkey, Russia and Eastern Europe, Hilton Worldwide

Yavuz Ungor

Owner, Matrix Travel

Romain Avril

Vice President Business Development, The Rezidor Hotel Group

Şelale Kadak

Business Columnist, Sabah Newspaper

Arda Ermut

Vice President, ISPAT - Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Turkey

Selen Ersü

Chairman & CEO, EVER Group

Sinan Onbulak

eBusiness Director, Titanic Hotels

Kadir Topbaş

Mayor of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality

Aykut Eken

Board Member, Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEIK)

Sevgi Kurt Gürbüz

Consultant - FFE & OSE Procurement, BDO Hospitality Consulting

Defne Gezen

Managing Director, DTM Hospitality Consulting

Erdem Şatiroğlu

Managing Partner, GEMDSE Project Management LLC

David Jenkins

Executive Vice President, Russia & CIS, JLL, Hotels & Hospitality Group

Kamil Berk

Tourism Coordinator, NG Hotels

Volkan Müller

Chief Operating Officer / Chief Financial Officer, JLL Turkey

Emre Narin

Vice President, Marti Hotels and Marinas

Hüseyin Gürel

Manager, Financial Analysis & Sector Analyst, TSKB

Naile Göçen Çukurova

Chairwoman, TUSIAD Tourism Working Group

Cahit Şahin

General Manager, The Montgomery Maxx Royal Golf Course

Andrew Sangster

Editorial Director, Hotel Analyst

Ozlem Gokce

General Manager, Extensa İstanbul Emlak Yatırım İnşaat ve Ticaret A.Ş.

Ben Martin

Principal, Head of Economics, AECOM

Yaşar Döngel

Member of the Board, IC Holding

Yalin Yaltirakli

Development Director, Turkey, IHG

Tarik Nasser

Vice President, International Lodging Development , Marriott International, Inc.

Kerim Başar

Managing Partner, CEO, N+1 Daruma Corporate Finance - Real Estate

Temel Aras

Chief Executive Officer, Kosifler Group

Alper Aksoy

Corporate Team Leader, Aksoy Construction & Trade

Emin Çakmak

Chairman, Global Healthcare Travel Council

François Victor

Associate Director, Horwath HTL

Daniel Thorniley

President, DT-Global Business Consulting

Simon Vincent

President EMEA, EVP, Hilton Worldwide

Burak Akgüç

Executive Vice President - Corporate Banking and Project Finance, TSKB

Oya Narin

Chairperson of the Board, Marti Hotels and Marinas

Bilge Turcan

Chief Business Development Officer , Dedeman Hotels & Resorts International

Ömer Isvan

President, Servotel

Tavit Köletavitoğlu

President, Atlas Project & Land Development

Cenk Sidar

President & CEO, Sidar Global Advisors (SGA)

Brian Watson

VP Architecture, Design & Construction, EMEAI, Wyndham Hotel Group

Jean-Jacques Dessors

Chief Executive Officer Mediterranean, Middle-East and Africa , ACCOR

Serdar Denktaş

Deputy PM & Minister of Economy, Tourism, Culture & Sports, Northern Cyprus

Nida Çandarlı-Sözügeçer

Golf Consultant, BDO Hospitality Consulting

Marilyn McHugh

Vice President, Global Events, Questex Hospitality + Travel Group

Mehmet Önkal

Managing Partner, BDO Hospitality Consulting

Fatih Cigal

Vice President, Marketing & Sales (Central Europe), Turkish Airlines

Jonathan Worsley

Chairman, Bench Events, Board Director, STR Global

Dr. Ibrahim Birkan

General Manager , Turser Tourism Service & Trade Inc.

T. Serdar Bacaksız

Member of the Board of Directors, Limak Construction

Huseyin Koc

Co-Founder, Metropol Urban Planning LLC

Elizabeth Winkle

Managing Director, STR Global

Gülgün Korkusuz

General Manager, Uğurlu Consultancy

Hakan Ozkasikci

Development Architect, Turkey & South Eastern Europe, IHG

Ertuğrul Karaoğlu

Chief Executive Officer, Intra Tourism Group

Metin Erdoğdu

President, Horwath HTL

Hande Tibuk

Member of Board, Net Holding Inc.

Hakan Ateş

President & Chief Executive Officer, Denizbank

Ayhan Yeginsu

President, LDC - Leisure Development Consultants

Mehmet Kocadon

Mayor of Bodrum

Sinan Inan

General Manager, Antalya Convention Bureau

Diego Lofeudo

Senior Director of Market Management for the Middle East and Indian Ocean , Expedia

Alexis de La Palme

SVP – Head of Development Europe , Accor

Bart Carnahan

Senior Vice President, Acquisitions & Development, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

Press Release

25 Jan 2012

Tourism set to play catalyst in Turkey

Investors in Turkey hungry for market information

Tourism sector in Turkey remains ripe and untapped   


Istanbul, Turkey November 2011: The outlook of the Turkish tourism industry is more buoyant than ever, with an increasing number of international and local hotel companies investing in the sector, said Jonathan Worsley, Chairman of Bench Events, co-organiser of the Central Asia and Turkey Hotel Investment Conference (CATHIC), to be held in Istanbul from February 6-8 2012.

“It is the ideal time to invest in Turkey’s hospitality sector with international tourist arrivals expected reach 33 million by 2012[1]. Indeed, more than 1.4[2]million Arab visitors are recorded so far this year.”

Figures reveal that the tourism sector is currently contributing 11 per cent year on year economic growth, with Istanbul seeing a 30 per cent increase in tourist revenue for 2011. Worsley noted that this sets the pace for Turkey to achieve its goal of welcoming 70 million tourist arrivals by 2023 - the 100th Anniversary of the Republic.

Meanwhile, Mehmet Önkal, Managing Partner, BDO Hospitality Consulting in Turkey warned that investment in the sector is crucial.

“One of the key drivers of sustainable development is the consistent flow of investment and Turkey is lucky as it does not face the same challenges with financing as other markets.  There does however need to be a more strategic drive that appreciates the needs of the market, as well as recognition of the unique requirements of a hotel development, as opposed to other asset classes.”

Önkalsaid that Turkey is at the beginning of a property boom and that investors and stakeholders have yet to fully identify and utilise the investment opportunities presented by the tourism and hospitality sector, proven to be a catalyst for economic growth.

Worsley said that the upcoming CATHIC will address both the opportunities and challenges, specifically those related to the availability of capital. “We will be joined by representatives from major Turkish banks and will discuss hotel financing structures and lending criteria, as well as issues involved in ensuring properties provide long term return on investment for owners”.

The conference programme includes speakers with knowledge and expertise in regional and international hotel development, finance, hotel branding and operations, plus sessions giving perspectives from industry analysts.

Key speakers at CATHIC 2012 include Cevdet Akcay, Chief Economist, Yapi Kredi Bank; Denis Hennequin, President & CEO, Accor SA; Eric Danziger, President & Chief Executive Officer, Wyndham Hotel Group; Angela Brav, Chief Executive Officer – Europe, IHG; Kurt Ritter, President & CEO, The Rezidor Hotel Group; Atilla Ozturk,  CEO & Board Member, ASTAY; Serdar Bilgili, Chairman, Bilgili Holding; Simon Vincent, President - Europe, Hilton Worldwide; Roeland Vos, President EAME, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide; and Lado Sakvarelidze, Chief Financial Officer, Redix.

In addition to the conference programme, CATHIC offers various networking opportunities, as well as an exhibition.  Delegates will have ample opportunity to meet other participants, discuss opportunities and to do business.