Meir Brand, Vice President of Google Emerging Markets, stating that they offer $12 million of financing to tradesmen and SMEs, he said that their aim is to make businesses durable and their investments will continue.
Turkey Tradesmen and Artisans Confederation by Google, launched the “Tradesmen Making a Difference with Digital Transformation” program with the support of the Ministry of Commerce and the Presidency Digital Transformation Office, which will support SMEs under pandemic conditions.
Speaking at the meeting held online with the participation of Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan, Brand stated that the internet is of vital importance during the pandemic and that people can reach the facts about health and continue their education.
Stating that governments also deliver online services to citizens and monitor health, Brand said, “Thanks to the use of technology all over the world, we made 5-year progress within 5 months. This case is the same for Turkey. The share of online retailing has increased from 5% to 10% in all retail, and we anticipate that 1.5 million businesses will gain new digital skills and move their businesses to digital.”
Stating that businesses need financing for digital transformation, Brand made the following assessment:
“We are offering a $12 million finance package. By doing so, we are providing a great opportunity. Economic recovery will accelerate thanks to online tools, digital skills, and partnerships. Our goal in Turkey is to make businesses durable. For this, we are offering them a 360-degree program. We will make digitalization possible through a long-term partnership. We will continue to invest in Turkey. Clearly, this year has been a tough year. I sense that next year will be positive. I think we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. When we look at the online world and what Turkey did on online platforms during the epidemic period we can say that Turkey will come out strong after the crisis.”
“It will contribute to the ability of our tradesmen to use technology”
Turkey Tradesmen and Artisans Confederation (TESK) Chairman Bendevi Palandoken, speaking of the difficulties experienced by tradesmen and tradesmen during the epidemic process, said that digitalization frequently came to the fore in this period when things came to a standstill.
Speaking about the contributions of the use of the digital system to tradesmen and craftsmen under pandemic conditions, Palandoken explained that the restaurant and cafe operators of the project will receive digital marketing training.
Palandoken said, “The project will contribute to the technology usage skills of our tradesmen by developing the contents for the needs of our tradesmen in the restaurant and cafe sector. Information will be given so that they can sell online. I wish the project to be carried out in the 20 provinces most affected by the epidemic will be beneficial for the digitalization of our tradesmen.”
“We created a Covid-19 support package worth about $12 million”
Google Country Director for Turkey, Mehmet Keteloglu also said that since they started to operate in Turkey as Google in 2006 they have made multi-faceted contributions to Turkey’s digital transformation.
Keteloglu expressed that the digital ecosystem they contribute to in Turkey provided employment for 1.4 million people to this day and continues to do so. He said, “The share of the digital economy supported by Google in terms of economic size has exceeded 4% in national income and reached ₺150 billion on a nominal basis. We estimate that the share of the digital economy supported by Google will reach 4.7% of the national income in 2023. As an international company operating in this country for 14 years, we have faith in Turkey.”
As Google, Keteloglu explained that they aim to help the story of tens of thousands of businesses in Turkey to continue during and after the pandemic, he added saying:
“For this, at this critical juncture in history, we created a Covid-19 support package consisting of 4 main components and worth about $12 million for our tradesmen and public institutions. The “Tradesmen Program Making a Difference with Digital Transformation” consists of four components. These four components, aiming to accelerate the digital transformation of our tradesmen, are donations to restaurants and cafes and their employees through TESK; Special credit supports we will be providing to SMEs; Google Turkey Digital Platform where we will be providing digital trainings and tools and as the last 2, the advertising grants we provide to public institutions and organizations and SMEs.”
Keteloglu emphasized that while supporting the tradesmen 360 degrees with digital tools and talents, with the program, they also aim to stand by them in troubled times with new financial resources.
Keteloglu stated that the first leg of the program was a donation of $500 thousand to be made by Google.org to TESK. He added saying, “The main goal of this donation is to equip restaurant and cafe owners and their employees, who were adversely affected by the pandemic process, with digital skills, to make them more resistant to such disasters, epidemics, and unexpected situations.”
We will implement credit opportunity to SMEs with a financial institution in Turkey
Keteloglu stated that they aimed to reach 20 thousand restaurant and cafe owners and employees within 24 months with the online and offline training they planned within the scope of the project, and gave the following information:
“This figure is equivalent to 10% of restaurants and cafes operating in Turkey. In the first period of the project, an online training platform will be established and sector-specific digital competency training will be provided through the distance education method. The second phase of the TESK-Google cooperation includes city visits that will begin after the pandemic conditions are suitable. In this context, 20 cities will be visited, face-to-face interviews will be held and restaurants and cafes will meet with a comprehensive digital transformation education booklet developed for them.”
We will implement the credit opportunity we created to support SMEs with a financial institution in Turkey in 2021 with the support of our minister. The acquisition of digital capabilities by small businesses has become an inevitable requirement for the new normal. For this purpose, we created the Google Turkey Digital Platform for businesses that want to transform their business into digital, they can find the online tools they need in one place.
Keteloglu stated that with Grow My Store, which is in Google Turkey Digital Platform, they offer businesses the free guidance they need on issues such as bringing their products together with a wider consumer audience and conducting digital marketing campaigns more effectively.
Mehmet Keteloglu added that, with the Google My Business product on this platform, they provide businesses with the opportunity to be much more accessible, especially during the epidemic period.
SMEs are aimed to be strong and competitive
According to information provided at the meeting, Google aims to make tradesmen and SMEs resistant to epidemic conditions and help them become strong and competitive businesses of tomorrow with its grants, financing, advertising loans, and “Tradesmen Making a Difference with Digital Transformation” program.
Google Turkey’s support package for tradesmen who are economic actors consists of four basic components. It was prepared by TESK cooperation with the support of relevant public institutions and organizations. And it aims to make small businesses more resilient to disasters by equipping them with digital skills by equipping small businesses with digital skills.
Within the scope of the program, which will support tradesmen and SMEs with 360 degrees and offer $12 million of financing, $500 thousand of Google.org grant will be given to TESK for the digital transformation of restaurants and cafes.
Acting on the fact that it will take time for the traumatic effects of the pandemic on SMEs to disappear, Google will provide a $3 million loan program to help SMEs access capital and ease their cash flows.
Advertising grants worth $8.5 million were provided to public institutions and organizations and SMEs to spread critical information about the epidemic to public health and to support businesses.
Google Turkey Digital Platform, brought to life in October, will help businesses to access online tools and training to help them reach new customers and markets, quickly and effectively, from a single point.
The platform, which includes different tools, products, and trainings such as Grow My Store, Google My Business, Digital Workshop, and IdeaSoft cooperation, aims to reach 1.5 million individuals and businesses and to teach them digital skills.
Source: AA / Translated by Bazaar Times