The way the designers operate in Turkey follow the general pattern in many other countries, the pattern being operating as consultancy companies or within the corporate structure of manufacturing companies. In line with the general tendency, industrial design is practiced either by in-house design groups or by designers forming companies of their own and giving service to the industry. The “silent design” phenomenon which is the practice of industrial design by non-designers is unfortunately very common.
According to a research study carried out by Teoman (2008), the design consultancies in Turkey are typically small organizations employing an average of 3-4 people. They are led by their founders who are designers with varying degrees of experience gained in the in-house design departments of large companies or simply on the job. A recent phenomenon is the opening of boutique design companies by one or two recent graduates and designers or professionals in different areas with an interest in design (amateur designers) showing and selling their work in different channels such as local art and design fairs and the internet.
The major design consultancy companies primarily focusing on product design (rather than furniture or interior design) in the Turkish domestic market are:
Aykut Erol Endüstriyel Tasarım ve Organizasyon Ltd. Şti., Founder Aykut Erol
Birgil Design, Founder Armağan Birgil
Can Yalman Design, Founder Can Yalman
Defne Koz Studio, Founder Defne Koz
Demirden Design, Founders Hasan Demir Obuz, Mehtap Obuz and Sema Obuz
Design Base/Tasarım Üssü, Founder Gamze Güven
DesignUm, Founder Ümit Altun
Hulusi Neci Design, Founder Hulusi Neci
Kilittaşı Tasarım, Founder Kunter Şekercioğlu and Taner Şekercioğlu
Maybe Design, Founders Erdem Akan, Bora Akçay
Mete Mordag Design, Founder Mete Mordağ
MG Design, Founders Melih Gürleyik and Seyman Çay
Mirzat Koç Design, Founder Mirzat Koç
Murat Armağan Design, Founder Murat Armağan
Omlet İstanbul, Founders Aysun Altındağ, Meltem Maralcan
Orhan Irmak Tasarım, Founders Orhan Irmak and Gökhan Irmak
Oya Design, Founder Oya Akman
Tartan Design, Founder Adlıhan Tartan
Trio Design, Founders Burak Daylan, Ece Günay Daylan, Bülent Zorlu
Zulu Design, M. Zafer Uluçay, Umut Yentür, Onur Eryiğit, Emre Bingöl
Some of the above companies such as Demirden Design (under the brand name of ilio), Oya Design, Maybe Design and Aykut Erol Design have also created their own collections and sell them through various marketing channels both in Turkey and abroad. 888 design and GAEAforms are other companies with their own collections. While some of these companies work with Turkish manufacturers and suppliers, some have worked with foreign companies.