Sabancı Holding CEO Cenk Alper speaks at 'Unlocking Digital Value in Industries' and 'Human-Centred Trade' panels in Davos


Sabancı Holding CEO Cenk Alper was among the notable names representing the business world at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2022 held in Davos, Switzerland, between May 22-26.

The theme of this year's World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, which is back after a two-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, was ‘History at the Milestones; Government Policies and Business Strategies.’

Cenk Alper, who participated in this event that brought together more than 2,500 state leaders, government representatives, and business people worldwide, talked about advanced material technologies and digital transformation processes in the "Unlocking Digital Value in Industries" panel. Cenk Alper, also took part as a speaker at the "Human-Centred Trade" panel together with prominent leaders that steer the world trade in the fields of civil society, academia, and public administration, made important statements to ensure a fairer trade order on a global scale.

“Ecosystem management is gaining importance day by day”

Cenk Alper, who underlined that the roadmap followed for sustainability could also be a recipe for fair trade, stated, “The starting point for all organizations is their employees. Covid-19 once again proved to everyone the importance of not leaving anyone behind. 'Not leaving behind' is not only about not laying off employees but preparing them for the future world, upskilling and reskilling them. That is, to implement strategic workforce planning in human resources practices. On the other hand, unionization and providing equality to the disadvantaged groups in the society are among the top priorities here.”

Stating that solely a single institution or organization can’t find a solution to any issue concerning the world’s future, Cenk Alper said, “Ecosystem management is gaining importance day by day to increase the impact of institutions. A multi-stakeholder approach that carries a purpose-oriented approach to dealers, suppliers, and business partners is a must for fair trade. In this context, we demand that all ESG (environmental, social, governance) practices that we utilize should be embraced in the same way by their suppliers. Here, digitalization is a very important complement and accelerator. Digitizing all supply chains and ensuring transparent data transfer is vital on the road to fair trade.”

Not profit-oriented but purpose-oriented businesses

Adding that digital platforms and digital marketplaces offer important opportunities for the development of fair trade, Cenk Alper said, “Thanks to the marketplaces, local manufacturers have the chance to reach their customers worldwide, which is an important element of fair trade. Innovation and ideas are critical in the world nowadays. Finding funding for the right idea is considerably easier than it was previously. In this way, it is possible to transfer information and access the market. This is how we can support free and fair trade. This should be one of the issues that the private sector should prioritize. We need to extend this cooperation and way of doing business not only to the business world but also to the supply chain.

Emphasizing that digitalization is one of the essential tools for improving human-oriented trade, Cenk Alper said, “The main thing here is; blending technology, digitalization, innovation with sustainability and using this to improve business processes and strengthen the customer experience. When you achieve this, you will be able to enter a new realm of human-centred trade. Using digitalization only to maximize profits is one of the businesses’ biggest mistakes. There is an obvious truth in today’s world: The criterion of success is measured by the value you create for your stakeholders, apart from profit. We have responsibilities towards society, the environment, and governance. We apply the same practices to the supply chains and provide them with know-how transfer. Investors are now evaluating us according to these criteria. For this reason, all commercial institutions should focus on the purpose, not the profit. When we achieve this, we will make the world a more livable place.”

Sabancı Holding Continues to Grow in Line with its Strategic Priorities

Sabancı Holding has announced its financial results for the first quarter of 2022. Sabancı, which increased its combined sales by 135% to 72 billion 704 million TL in the first quarter, achieved a consolidated net profit of 8 billion 251 million TL.

Focusing on the 'new economy' with its strategic roadmap, which covers the next five years, Sabancı Holding continued to strengthen its balance sheet in the first quarter while achieving significant gains in digital and sustainability fields.

By stating, "With these developments, thinking globally and being receptive to customer needs has become crucial for companies," Sabancı Holding CEO Cenk Alper hints at recently emerging geopolitical risks, especially the Russia-Ukraine war and the worldwide inflationary threats, both of which have contributed to the global operating environment becoming more challenging. "While we shape our strategies in line with this approach, we continue our uninterrupted growth with foreign and domestic investments. The international steps we have taken with our building materials and industry business lines and the gathering of our global digital activities under a single umbrella have proven to be critical elements of our road map within the scope of our Group Purpose. With these steps, which emphatically demonstrate our target to develop our global presence further, we will ensure that Sabancı's position is more advantageous in a progressively competitive, more demanding environment where borders are being lifted daily."

Cenk Alper gave information about the results achieved at the CEO & Employee meeting held online on the 11th of May and answered questions from employees.