Turkey’s largest producer of vinegar and sauces with a history of nearly a century, KEMAL KÜKRER once again broke new ground in the sector as it started a partnership with one of the world’s largest food companies —Japanese AJINOMOTO.
At the press conference, held at Les Ottomans Hotel on 12 November, company’s managers commented extensively about the partnership, which made a tremendous impact on the industry.
Turkey’s leading producer of vinegar and sauces, KEMAL KÜKRER once again broke new ground in the industry, starting a partnership with the Japanese firm AJINOMOTO. One of the world’s largest food companies in the sauces and flavorings segment, AJINOMOTO acquired a 50% stake in KÜKRE A.Ş. for TL 60 million. Important details were shared about the partnership at the press conference held on 12 November in Turkey, following the signing ceremony held on 5 November in Japan. KÜKRE A.Ş. General Manager Sabri Gülel and AJINOMOTO Inc. Vice President and Food & Beverage Manager Makoto Murabayashi attended the meeting.
Commenting on the partnership, KÜKRE A.Ş. General Manager Sabri Gülel said: “As Turkey’s leading company in the vinegar and sauces segment with an annual production capacity of 37,000 tons and more than TL 33 million in revenues, we wish to both grow in the market and grow the market through new flavors and new products with this international partnership. Developing the existing market with new flavors and products and to make new investments have always been our priority goals. Currently, we have a significant market share in the industry, but we had long desired to further strengthen our position and develop the industry by engaging in a partnership that would bring in new talent and ‘know-how’ with a firm that had proven itself worldwide. We also believed that this collaboration would be the best and fastest way to benefit the national economy.”
“Using state-of-the-art technology while remaining faithful to traditional values”
In his address, Gülel also explained why they had chosen AJINOMOTO: “We all know that the Japanese boast state-of-the-art technology in all industries. Likewise, they also remain faithful to traditional values in the food industry while using the most advanced technologies through their innovative perspective. Thus, they are able to produce the healthiest products. On average, they are investing USD 350 million annually in R&D. Through this cooperation, we also wish to provide the Turkish people with the finest flavors from world cuisines and to offer the rest of the world the finest flavors of the Turkish cuisine. Going forward, we shall introduce to Turkish consumers different tastes ranging from flavorings to frozen foods.”
Regarding their short and medium-term investments following the partnership, Gülel said: “We included in our business plan the introduction of numerous product groups produced by our partners, and even many products they do not produce but enjoyed by the Japanese people, and which we believe would attract the Turkish people. Our new product plans will also require additional production areas and capacities at our current factories. That’s why we have new production facility investments on the way. Our short-term investment plan includes building a new production facility in order to grow a category among our current products. We believe that we will create employment for 80 people here.”
“Both companies respect their consumers and strive to provide them with fine products”
Commenting on the partnership, Vice President and Food & Beverages General Manager Makoto Murabayashi of AJINOMOTO A.Ş., which was established in 1909 and is one of the world’s largest food companies in the sauce and flavoring segment today with a sales network across 130 countries, 105 production facilities in 26 countries, and 27,500 employees, said: “Our common values played an important role in our decision to choose KEMAL KÜKRER. First and foremost, both companies respect their consumers and strive to provide them with fine products. While they may be adversely affected from the competition, they never compromise on the value they place in their products and consumers. Furthermore, with deep-rooted histories of nearly a century, both firms have well-established structures and important success stories. That being said, KEMAL KÜKRER produces with the care of a family company, but to underline it, correctly and the way it really should be. These are very important values for us. The great emphasis placed on R&D by both companies and the subsequent success has also been instrumental in our decision to enter this partnership. Certainly, the prestige and reliability of the brands in their respective countries was yet another important criterion for us.”
Turkey to become a base for 500 million people
Noting that “Turkey is a very important market for us with both its location and its commercial development. Over the next five years, we aim to grow threefold in the market. In the meantime, we also envisage an increase in the variety and number of products. Our goal is to make Turkey the base of a region with a total population of 500 million, including the Middle East, Turkic Republics, and the neighboring countries,” Murabayashi also provided information about their future plans and investments for Turkey.
A global giant in its sector with its motto “Eat Well, Live Well”, the Japanese company earned more than USD 12 billion in revenues in 2013.