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Turkish Employers' Association of Metal Industries, MESS, and Silicon Valley's Plug and Play announce partnership to create a Mobility & IoT Innovation Hub in Istanbul, Turkey
[January 13, 2021]

Turkish Employers' Association of Metal Industries, MESS, and Silicon Valley's Plug and Play announce partnership to create a Mobility & IoT Innovation Hub in Istanbul, Turkey

ISTANBUL, Jan. 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The largest global innovation platform for startups and corporations from Silicon Valley, Plug and Play, is partnering with Turkish Employers' Association of Metal Industries, MESS in launching its newest location in Istanbul, Turkey. This office located at MEXT (MESS Technology Center) and designed and launched by MESS, will focus on connecting startups, corporations, and investors working on innovating the automotive, energy, logistics, steel and durable consumer goods industries. The innovation hub is scheduled to run its first official startup accelerator program in early 2021.

"We have been building innovation platforms focused on mobility and IoT worldwide in locations such as Silicon Valley, Stuttgart, Detroit, Shanghai and Tokyo. With our startups, we can bring efficiency and cost savings in the automotive, manufacturing and logistics industries. Through this new operation here, we will be able to connect Istanbul to Silicon Valley, China, Singapore, Germany, and the rest of our global network, and continue to foster collaboration and innovation," said Saeed Amidi, Founder and CEO of Plug and Play. "Industries have been going through an incredible transformation with advancements in electrification, connected and autonomous vehicles, Industry 4.0, logistics and many more. Our partnership with MESS as a founding partner in Istanbul, which has 250 leading corporations as members, is a perfect example of how big organizations are taking the necessary steps to embrace the changes and find technology outside."

"As the largest employers association of Turkey, digitalization of the Turkish manufacturing industry is our key priority. We have to benefit from the opportunities of 4th industrial revolution and prepare our member companies to the disruptive competition it brings. This could be best achieved through open innovation and corporate entrepreneurship. After our MEXT (MESS Technology Center) and World Economic Forum's Center for 4th Industrial Revolution projects, in cooperation with Plug and Play, we are creating a unique ecosystem in Istanbul where our members, startups and investors interact with each other for open innovation and global business development" said Özgür Burak Akkol, Chairman of the Board of MESS. "We are bringing a truly global platform to Istanbul. While our members will have the opportunity work with the best start-ups, new entrepreneurs will have ready client at MEXT where they can test their products. Investor community will select the best start-ups with proven track record and highr return of investment. This ecosystem will boost Turkish startup ecosystem. I invite startups to engage with Plug and Play Istanbul platform to meet our 250 members as well as investor community" he added. Underlying the position of Istanbul between Europe and Asia, Akkol stated that Plug and Play Istanbul Platform aimed to make Istanbul as the new regional hub for entrepreneurship and innovation. "While Istanbul is among the Top 100 Emerging Ecosystem Ranking, we want Istanbul to be among Top 30 Global Startup Ecosystems" he further added.

Plug and Play's accelerator program will identify up to 20 companies to participate in two cohorts annually. The focus will be on Smart and Digitally Connected Factory, AI Production Optimization, Intelligent Factory Automation, Smart Tracking & Supply Chain Monitoring, Advancing Connected and Autonomous Driving, Supply Chain Optimization, Sensor Technologies, Predictive Analytics and Machine Learning. Our platform in Istanbul will offer business development, mentorship, and networking opportunities for startups, investors, and relevant industry corporations.

"Launching our journey in Istanbul has been one of my biggest dreams since I joined Plug and Play four years ago. Our vision to put Istanbul on the global map as an innovation hub has found its match with the MESS leadership. Our office is located at MEXT Technology Center, which is Turkey's largest, the most innovative, and state of art technology center. Our partner will bring their network of the largest corporations in Turkey work with our global startups find new business and investment opportunities, and connecting the key stakeholders and industry experts will bring new ideas in a location ripe for disruption," said Omer Gozen, Senior Vice President at Plug and Play.

Corporations, startups, investors, and other industry leaders interested in Plug and Play Istanbul please visit the website to learn more and speak to our experts:

About Plug and Play

Plug and Play is a global innovation platform. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, we have built accelerator programs, corporate innovation services and an in-house VC to make technological advancement progress faster than ever before. Since inception in 2006, our programs have expanded worldwide to include a presence in over 35 locations globally giving startups the necessary resources to succeed in Silicon Valley and beyond. With over 40,000 startups and 400 official corporate partners, we have created the ultimate startup ecosystem in many industries. Companies in our community have raised over $9 billion in funding, with successful portfolio exits including Danger, Rappi, Dropbox, Honey, (Sound) Hound, Lending Club and PayPal.

For more information, visit

About Turkey's Employers Association of Metal Industries (MESS)

Turkish Employers' Association of Metal Industries (MESS) represents Turkish metal sector and was established in 1959 in Istanbul as the first employers' union of the industry. MESS works for the advancement of industrial relations through constructive dialogue and knowledge sharing. MESS represents 249 firms serving the main and supply industries in automotive, iron, steel casting, and durable goods. These firms include many global brands such as Bosch, Ford, ABB, Mercedes, Fiat, and MAN. Total contribution of its members to local economy is more than 60 billion USD. They directly employ 185 thousand people.  As an unconventional employer association, MESS positioned it's beyond the classical mandate of an employer's union. Shaping the way for industrial relations and the business life, MESS aims to ensure sustained peace and harmony at the workplace for the benefit of its members and their employees, contribute to the growth of national economy and industrial output, and provide services based on mutual confidence and dialogue.

For further details about MESS, visit

About MEXT (MESS Technology Center)

MEXT is Turkey's largest, the most innovative, state of art technology center and it is the world's largest digital transformation & competence development center. Within its vision to support its members along their digital transformation journeys towards Industry 4.0, Turkish Employers' Association of Metal Industries (MESS) developed an ecosystem made up of more than 30 globally recognized technology providers, universities, and institutions to put MEXT into practice. Built on 8.000 square meters in Istanbul, MEXT provides its visitors with a model factory, showcases, a training area, office spaces, a co-working space with ecosystem players, a conference center and many more.

For further details about MEXT, visit

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