The Architect of First non-English Application on Facebook

Ayşe Zamboğlu - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - Silicon Valley culture inspires young professionals to start their own businesses. Many talk about it all the time, but only some take the step forward along with the risks that come with it. Serdar Bulut is a young entrepreneur who has taken the step forward. Here he will share with us his background, talk about his companies, and answer a couple of our questions.
Can you tell us about yourself?
I have been in the IT (information technologies) industry for over 10 years. I have worked in high-volume web application projects and management consulting engagements to deliver site assessments, security audits, business continuity / disaster recovery planning, architecture and implementation of high-availability systems, single sign-on, centralized authentication, system management automation, system-and-application performance tuning.
I had the chance to work on projects with high profile companies such as various Fortune 500 companies including Wal-Mart Inc, Wells Fargo Bank, Apple Computer Inc and Applied Materials Inc. I worked alone as well as with teams where I was the team leader. We completed many award-winning projects.
What is your background?  
I have a BS from METU (Middle East Technical University) in Electrical Engineering. I graduated in 1999 and came to the U.S to further my education in graduate school. I received my Masters of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California. Some of my research interest include Quantum Computing, Artificial Intelligence, and data-link layer protocol development for long-distance wireless systems. I have current CISA and CISSP certifications.

So how many companies do you have right now?
I am focusing all of my energy on two companies at the moment. The Forbin Group, Inc., which provides professional IT services to various companies, and Apsyma Corporation, which is a holding company for various web startups.
How did you decide to start your own businesses?
The primary reasons behind starting my businesses have been either the fact that we would be first in the market or our business fundamentally would be better than most of the competitors in that market. Namely, I saw great opportunities for my ideas to be successful for one reason or another. All my business have been self-funded, so I and my partners spend a great deal of effort explaining to ourselves why these ideas are great investments before we spend our money and time on them.
In addition to your San Francisco based IT company, you also own a website in Turkey, Can you tell us more about both of these?  
My San Francisco based business, The Forbin Group, Inc, is a professional services company. Our clients include very famous Web 2.0 companies as well as the largest tech companies – search, online retail, etc. – in the world. We also organize an event called "Geek Sessions" where anybody can come and hear technical leaders from Facebook, Yahoo, Friendster, Sun, and etc. talk about their technologies to help other startup technologists.

HerseyBulunur.Com is a free online classifieds site founded by METU graduates. Our target market is exclusively Turkish people in Turkey and all around the world. also has a Facebook application, which perhaps is the first non-English application on Facebook. We currently exceed 1 million page views a month, and are growing over 10 % a month. Our goal is to help Turkish people find what they need faster and more cheaply.
What are your plans for the future? Do you want to start more businesses in Turkey?
I am currently helping a few colleagues in the Valley to start their businesses, either helping them with their presentations for potential VCs, business plans, how to select their team, and what technology to start their businesses with. I would to like to continue doing more of that. When investing in Turkey, cheap labor is not on the list of advantages for high tech companies. Therefore, the investors have to look for other reasons why they need to invest in Turkey. On the other hand, as an emerging market Turkey has a lot of potential for companies to succeed in selling new products or services. I have at least one new idea that I would like to fund or work on later this year to be marketed in Turkey.
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07