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Cisco's $275 Million, Five Year Commitment To Turkey
[September 28, 2006]

Cisco's $275 Million, Five Year Commitment To Turkey

TMCnet Contributing Editor

Cisco Systems (News - Alert) has announced what company officials consider a "significant investment initiative" in Turkey, totaling up to $275 million over five years.

This announcement was made by John Chambers, President and CEO of Cisco Systems, during his visit to Central and Eastern Europe and highlights the growing importance of places like Turkey in the global emerging markets.

Don'tcha just love that phrase, "emerging markets?" When I was a journalist here in Istanbul in the early '90s it was an "emerging" market. When has a market emerged as much as it's ever going to, and what do you nicely call it when it does? If you've got a 5'2, 48-year old man you don't call him a "growing man," you call him a "short man."

Chambers discussed Cisco's investment plans in Turkey with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan while in Ankara this week.

Turkish news sources reported an announcement made by Huseyin Celik, Turkish Minister of Education and Faruk Eczacibasi, President of Turkish Informatics Foundation during Chambers’ visit to Turkey:

"In alignment with the protocol which was signed between Turkish Ministry of Education and Turkish Informatics Foundation, NetAcad programs developed by Cisco, will be widely used in high school curricula and in training teachers and IT personnel of the Ministry," they said.

"As a first step, an Instructor training Center is set up, namely Cisco Academy Training Center, which will be founded by Turkish Informatics Foundation within Department of Education Technologies in Turkish Ministry of Education."

This is pretty standard fare for Turkish news, by the way, the news broadcasts here are either flaming car wrecks or men in suits standing around talking or signing something.

Chambers said Cisco's announcement about its investment in Turkey "supports the country's entrepreneurial focus and e-transformation initiatives, which are focused on establishing a more connected country and skilled workforce… and are vital for Turkey to sustain the same rate of growth it has enjoyed over the past four years."

Cisco Systems' five-year investment plan for Turkey will allocate investments in the following areas:

Create technology investment initiatives aligned with Turkey's Networked Economic Agenda to help accelerate country transformation and economic growth.

Support the Turkish Prime Minister's Connected Turkey e-transformation agenda by providing networking technology and prototypes to support pilot programs targeted towards rural broadband for education, as well as connectivity for small and medium businesses, municipalities and local communities.

Develop a Cisco Systems Technology Innovation Center to demonstrate the impact technology has on productivity across the different market segments and foster closer collaboration with local companies and partners to accelerate partner testing as well as customer pilot projects. As part of this, Cisco will provide a lab platform for testing complex new technologies for the Turkish marketplace with local partners and entrepreneurs and increase the number of CCIE engineers in the country to a minimum of 100.

Establish the Cisco Entrepreneurship Institute, an initiative between Cisco, the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) and the Turkish government, to teach skills for opening and running small businesses. The education partner in the program is the University of Economics and Technology. As part of this initiative Turkish entrepreneurs and small businesses will be eligible for equity and project financing, supporting information and communications technology development in Turkey.

Support the establishment of 200 new Networking Academies in the country over the next five years to provide enhanced technical programs in concert with leading local universities. There are currently 47 Networking Academies across Turkey.

Offer localized products as well as customer service and support for the technical needs and requirements of local service provider customers.

Increase overall headcount of Cisco employees in Turkey from 80 to 400 employees and expand office space to accommodate employee growth.

Cisco first established operations in Turkey in 1996 and today maintains offices in Istanbul and Ankara.

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. For more articles please visit David Sims’ columnist page.

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