The FOSTER Project Contributed to the Rapid Recovery Following the Earthquake

While the favorable loan provided through the FOSTER Project Employment Committed SME Finance Support Programme supports the cash flow of many enterprises, the loan’s significance for some SMEs is much greater.

One of them is Mahmut Eriş’s company in Şanlıurfa, which produces thousands of bottles of perfumes and fragrances per month. According to Eriş, the enterprise’s owner, they purchased raw materials with the loan shortly before the earthquake, which accelerated their recovery after the disaster.

Mahmut Eriş used to be a builder, but when the market conditions in the construction industry changed, he began looking for a new venture and discovered perfumery. Initially, Mr. Eriş studied perfume production and opened a perfume store in Şanlıurfa. He began production in 2015 and now produces 70 thousand bottles of perfume, 7,000 car fragrances, and 25,000 ambient fragrances per month.

They also opened stores in Samsun and Bursa as their business grew, and used the loan provided by the programme to purchase raw materials and bottles for about 3-4 months. Eriş emphasizes that the region’s businesses suffered the most from financial difficulties following the earthquake, and adds, “FOSTER Project just hit the spot for us at that time.” We gradually began production around 20 days after the earthquake.” Eriş also claims that sales are currently recovering, but that they have yet to begin selling to their old customers in Adıyaman, Kahramanmaraş, and Hatay.

Mr. Eriş explains that the project loan drew them in because of its long maturity and subsidized interest rate / profit share, and that it also contributed to their cash flow. Mahmut Eriş also plans to export. The company’s initial focus will be on the Iraqi market, but it is also looking into export opportunities in Uzbekistan and Egypt.