Simit Sarayı – The first and only simit factory in the world

Simit Sarayı interview

In this interview, we will find out more about the story of Simit Sarayı – The first and only simit factory in the world, coming from Turkey to the whole world. We interviewed Mr. Mehmet Ali Ergin, Board Member of Simit Sarayı, and this is what he had to say:

1. How did you enter the franchise business?

When we started Simit Sarayı 20 years ago, we were boutique bakery house. We established our factory in 2004, reached scale in production and to reach international markets we started franchise system.

Today Simit Sarayı has the most advanced franchise system.

2. Where and how did the idea of your concept come from?

Simit Sarayı has set out with the aim of becoming a world brand in food retailing with its innovative products, creative, powerful and widespread chain stores. We aimed to activate all our operating models that will be required in our corporate infrastructure.

Based on the values ​​of customer, product and branding, operational excellence and development, which are among our main strategies, we tried to develop our brand face and create a sustainable concept that would be integrated, high quality and competitive in a global environment.

The look and feel of the place affects the feelings of our guests, as well as attracting your target audience to the place, their experience and the continuity of their visit.

Simit Sarayı has created a natural and calming environment by bringing the textures that its guests will find peace of mind in line with consumer habits and expectations.

While choosing its furniture that evokes an elegant and ergonomic feeling, it has determined comfort as its first criterion and offered a warm and friendly atmosphere to its guests. In order to create a bright and spacious environment in its stores, it has created a quality and relaxing environment by using white marbles inspired by naturalness.

3. What inspired the brand name?

Simit, which is a traditional food unique to Turkey; It is one of the most preferred foods for breakfast and snacks between the day, consumed at every meal and whose taste has not changed for centuries.

According to the available sources, the history of the bagel starting from the Ottoman Empire until today; The fact that it is frequently used in the palace kitchen and even as one of the important treats offered by the sultans to their guests reflects the importance of simit in our culture.

Simit has continued to spread the friendship hidden in its dough to all over Turkey, has become one of the symbols of Istanbul in particular, and has been a part of the arts of even world-renowned artists.

It has been the subject of the poems of the poets, and the painters have frequently included simit and its sellers in their works. Giovanni Brindesi and Warwick Goble are some of the painters who used the simit in their works.

Simit is also frequently mentioned in Turkish literature. For Turkish people, simit is a taste in life, it is far beyond a sesame bun… It increases sharing, accompanies memories… its scent has peace and its sesame has abundance.

Sharing a simit is a sign of friendship When that crispy, deliciously smelling simit is bought, cut in half and handed to the other person, the simit becomes meaningful there. Maybe sharing the simit makes it more delicious.

Simit culture, which dates back to the 14th century, is an important part of the national culture of Turkey with its unique recipe, cooking technique and traditions shaped around it. Sharing, friendship, sincerity, warmth, the traditional taste of Anatolia, which is preferred by everyone from 7 to 70, simit creates an important value and culture for us.

With all these value chains, the symbol of abundance and plenteousness, the brand name of Simit Sarayı was born. Simit Sarayı, which adds a different dimension to the traditional simit culture and is the choice of everyone from 7 to 70 with its modern lines and wide menu options, brings Turkish tastes together with its guests.

It develops its product range with innovations without sacrificing taste and appeals to both the palate and the eye. It adds unforgettable flavors to every moment of the day, from breakfast to afternoon tea, with its products developed from simit to pastries, from cookie options to cake alternatives.

4. What is the story behind the brand’s logo?

Based on the bagel form, the logo was designed by prioritizing the colors on which the brand is based. Worked with a professional agency known throughout Turkey.

5. What makes your brand different from your competitors?

Simit Sarayı always maintains its priority as a leading brand in food retailing.

Simit Sarayı, which produces at world standards in the facility, which is equipped with the latest technology and has the world’s highest capacity raw frozen-cooked frozen flexible bagel production line, has developed a customer-centered understanding by always giving priority to consumer needs and expectations.

Simit Sarayı aims to provide its guests with a unique experience with the most practical, freshest, multiple product options, safe and sustainable value chains.

Fast, friendly service, reliable operation, original, warm, sincere, accessible, sensitive, pioneering, innovative.He produces not only skillfully, but also with love.

Our food is prepared by the hands of the masters, with love. We are a brand that everyone is proud of and we are the fastest growing Turkish food chain in the world.

Wherever you go, we offer all our flavors from Turkey with the same taste and quality. We say Bon Appetit to our 1 million guests every day.

6. What are the essential qualities that you look for in a franchisee?

Our ideal franchisee must have the following qualities

  • To have been active in the retail sector, especially to have knowledge and experience in the food sector
  • Having a team that can manage the operational processes of the stores
  • Have knowledge of the commercial dynamics of the market in which they will operate
  • Real estate connection and knowledge to find suitable locations for stores
  • Owning the business as his own and keeping management and supervision under control

7. How long does it take, on average, for your franchisee to realize their investment?

Once we agree on the location, we can open the doors of the store within 60 days.

8. What was the major challenge you faced in your career, and how did you overcome it?

I have bankrupted three times during my college years.

I learnt a lot from those failures.

Diversification in any matter and technology adoptation were the main lessons.

I’ve joined Simit Sarayı as Board Member to empower Simit Sarayı’s extensive corporate culture.

8.1.What is your best achievement?

Spinning Simit Sarayı factory as a new entity and creating new sales channels.

9. How does your business day start?

Jogging/crossfit at 06.30 am.

Breakfast with family at 8.00am

Greeting my team in the morning and reviewing/replying emails at 9.00am.

10. What was your best moment throughout your franchise career?

The best moment was when feedback comes from our Master Franchises for expansion.

Best one might be the demand came from one of our franchisees who operates retail areas of airports. They were extremely happy with the outcomes and they asked to widen their agreement to all airports they operate.

11. Where do you see your brand in the next 5 years?

We will be serving the most tasty bakery with best store experience in 40 countries (we are in 24 countries now) and Simit Sarayı will be listed in London Stock Exchange..

12. Any tips you want to impart to our readers who want to be in the franchise industry?

  1. The bottom line is “ROE”.. Return on Equity.
  2. Brands who support you in any step,
  3. Brands who implement technology,
  4. Brands who needs less capex with high revenue
  5. Brands who believe in that success of franchisees is the success of the brand.

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