From 1941 to Today

The Kopuzlar Group of Companies, for more than 80 years, has continued its activities among Turkey’s leading companies, in the industry, real estate and service sectors.


In 1941, our founder Akif Kopuz, at the age of 18 at the time, stepped into a life of business and commerce by opening a retail market of the name “Kısmet Pazarı” in Istanbul’s Maçka district, hereby setting the foundation for the Kopuzlar Group of Companies. Operating within the context of a turbulent Turkey, one facing the risks and economic difficulties of the ongoing Second World War, the group’s next step was to enter the internal trade, transportation and commission business sectors by founding a company under the name of “Yeşil Rize Ambarı” in a rental shop in the Unkapanı Yağ İskelesi (Unkapanı Oil Pier).

In 1945, Akif Kopuz, wanting to expand his operations with the experience from his existing businesses, and feeding from his interest towards his family’s longstanding professions in the livestock and leather industries, established Akif Kopuz Dahili Ticaret Şirketi (Akif Kopuz Internal Trade Company) in a Kazlıçeşme warehouse rented from the Ottoman Bank. Starting with the Black Sea Region, but quickly expanding to trade with all four corners of the nation, the firm achieved the title of becoming Turkey’s largest rawhide wholesaler, selling to leather manufacturers all over the country.



In the latter half of the 20th century, vast industrialisation and the accompanying migration from the Anatolian countryside had created an active construction and development climate within Istanbul. These years when the building sector displayed extensive growth also marked the period when the Kopuzlar Group of Companies commenced activities within the Turkish construction and real estate sectors with the establishment of Kopuzlar İnşaat. The firm, which started its activities developing small scale residential projects, rapidly expanded its areas of expertise in a short period of time to include many offices and industrial structures. The company continues today to develop projects aimed at satisfying a modernising Turkey’s need for innovative quality residential and commercial spaces.


The beginning of the 1980s represented a period in which the group, with the spirit of industrialisation and a deep belief in the power of producing high-quality value-added products, began investing in industry and manufacturing businesses. Utilising the experience gained from the rawhide wholesale business, the group established Kopuzlar Deri Sanayii ve Ticaret A.Ş. and commenced leather production targeted towards the shoe and apparel industries.

In the 2000s, as new product types and categories were added, the manufacturing capabilities of the group were expanded significantly.

These advances continued with the acquisition, in 2002, of Lifli Rulo ve Levha Sanayii A.Ş., an enterprise founded in 1973 claiming the title of the sole leatherboard manufacturing company in Turkey and the Middle East. Also holding the property of being a recycling company, Lifli Rulo proudly plays an important role in contributing to Turkey’s sustainable waste management strategy.

In 2016, Kopuzlar Eva Ürünleri Geri Dönüşüm San.ve Tic A.Ş. was founded under the umbrella of the group. It continues to produce EVA and XPE products and provide related services for industries such as automotive, construction and packaging.


In the 1980s, as Turkey, faced at the time with the reality that exporting value-added products had become an economic necessity, decided to open itself to the world, contributing to the country’s international trade capabilities became an important priority for the group. By raising the quality of the product portfolio to achieve world standards, and developing new marketing capabilities to tackle global opportunities, a comprehensive effort was commenced to increase the ratio of sales revenue generated by international transactions. The 90s, along with the crash of the Soviet Union, became a period in which significant gains were made targeting the newly open markets of the former Eastern Bloc.

As a continuation of the efforts to improve the country’s international trade capabilities, the group, which played a leading role in the establishment of the Istanbul Industry and Trade Free Zone in Tuzla, became the second largest shareholder of the founder and operating company DESBAŞ. In the following years the zone would go on to reach a trade volume of 7 billion USD, maintaining a national record for many years.


In the latter half of the 70s, with the growth in both the number and fields of activity of group subsidiaries, Akif Kopuz, who until that time had mostly managed his companies through his own managerial capabilities, started to understand the importance of institutionalization in achieving the continuity of his businesses. After the addition of the construction and manufacturing businesses in the 80s, effective corporate structure had become a requirement. This condition brought a new managerial philosophy to the group and its subsidiaries. With the official formation of the Kopuzlar Group of Companies, the planning of the group’s investment strategies and governance were collected within a single defined corporate structure.

This structure today still manages the group’s strategy, control, coordination and orientation efforts to add value and is responsible for ensuring the group vision and philosophy is implemented in homogeneity throughout its subsidiaries.