The Istanbul Chamber of Industry (ISO) released the results of Turkey’s Top 500 Industrial Enterprises 2021 (ISO Top 500) survey. Production-based sales by the country’s top 500 manufacturing companies surged by 73.8% to over TRY 2tr in 2021, compared to the previous year. The surge mainly stemmed from strong growth in exports and movement in foreign exchange rates (FX) and inflation. Exports made by the top 500 companies increased by 33.9% to USD 85.8bn in the same period.
The operating profit of the firms included in the ISO Top 500 jumped 139% to TRY 342bn. However, their financial expenses increased by 135% from TRY 89bn to TRY 209bn due to TRY devaluation, the surge in inflation, and interest rates. The total debt of the companies in the ISO Top 500 rose by 71% from TRY 881bn to TRY 1.5tr. Employment of Turkey’s top 500 manufacturing companies increased by 5.6% to 757,024 people in 2021 year-over-year. The surge in wages and salaries was up by 33% in the same period.
The geographical weight of the manufacturing industry shifted in favor of Anatolia last year, according to the ISO Top 500 survey. Kahramanmaras, Kocaeli, Gaziantep, and Kayseri were the top four cities with the highest increase in the number of companies, respectively. Meanwhile the number of companies from Adana, Bilecik, Hatay, Karabuk, Kutahya, Manisa, and Tekirdag also increased in the survey.
158 companies represented Istanbul in the ISO Top 500 survey in 2021. 193 firms were included in the survey from Istanbul 10 years ago. This year’s number is down by over 18% compared to last year. Although Istanbul has had a downward trend quantitatively in recent years, it topped the list with the highest number of companies. Istanbul was followed by Kocaeli with 40 companies and Izmir with 40 firms.
The number of companies representing Bursa and Ankara in the ISO Top 500 also decreased in 2021, compared to last year. The number of companies included in the survey dropped from 26 to 22 from Bursa, and from 30 to 26 from the capital Ankara in the same period. The number of companies owned by the public sector that represented Ankara in the ISO Top 500 fell from nine to eight.
Regarding top companies, Koc Holding ’s oil refinery subsidiary, Turkiye Petrol Rafinerileri (Tupras), topped the list with a production-based sales revenue of TRY 136.8bn, followed by Koc Holding ’s automotive subsidiary Ford Otosan with TRY 67.3bn in sales revenue. That was followed by the Azerbaijan-based energy company SOCAR Turkey’s oil refinery subsidiary, Star Refinery, with TRY 55.2bn in sales revenue. Tupras also topped the list in 2020.
The surge in export volume of the companies included in the ISO 500 stemmed especially from an increase in foreign demand, according to ISO Chairman Erdal Bahcivan. He also said the industrial sector and the manufacturing industry, which expanded by 16.6% and 17.2%, respectively, in 2021, positively differentiated from the overall economy and made the highest contribution to economic growth.
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