Istanbul Study Tour by IBA Marketing Club
On 26th May 2016, a group of 20 IBA students joined Mr. Jami Moiz, Assistant Professor Marketing, on a study tour to Istanbul, Turkey – a place they called 'halfway between home and the West'. The purpose of the tour was to introduce students to a different market dynamics and diverse culture of melting pot of Europe and Asia. Istanbul a magnificent city, steeped in the history of empires while at the same time is modern, edgy and dynamic provided students a great and unforgettable learning experience.
The tour was a perfect blend of academia and entertainment. During the 9 day trip, students visited different Religious, cultural, historical sites in Istanbul, spent a day to explore Bursa which was at 3 hours drive from Istanbul and had a corporate visit to Reckitt Benckiser in Istanbul.
The corporate visit at RB was hosted by Mr Faisal Waheed, who is the Head of Marketing and an IBA Alumnus class of 2001. He delivered an engaging presentation giving interesting insights about Turkish Consumer markets and its similarities with the local Pakistani market. Students observed the brand's business operations in Turkey and compared their findings with those of Reckitt Benckiser in Pakistan. Mr Faisal Waheed also gave detailed overview about his top performing brand "Finish" in the Turkish market. He answered in detail the questions of students and also guided students on job prospects in Turkey. The session ended on a happy note where we presented IBA Marketing Club memento to Mr. Faisal and his colleague.
Apart from the corporate visit, students also visited exquisite Turkish heritage such as ST. SOPHIA. This ancient basilica, built by Constantine the Great in the 4th century and reconstructed by Justinian in the 6th century, is one of the architectural marvels of all time. The beauty of Sultan Ahmet mosque also known as Blue Mosque is hard to escape the eyes. TOPKAPI PALACE The great palace of the Ottoman sultans from the 15th to the 19th centuries housing an exquisite collection of crystal, silver, and Chinese porcelain, robes worn by the sultans and their families, the famous jewels of the Imperial Treasury, miniatures, the Holy Mantle; enshrining relics of the Prophet Mohammed.
Students also experienced 2 continents, "Asia and Europe" together at Bosporus Bridge. At CAMLICA HILL the highest point in Istanbul, they admired the magnificent panorama of Istanbul and the Bosphorus from the beautiful gardens, landscaped in traditional Turkish Ottoman style. Moreover students also visited another city "Bursa" which is an Industrial hub and is best known for its finest textile products. It is also famous for Islamic heritage places. Starting with Ulucamii (Great Mosque), Green Mosque, Green Tomb. The group also visited Holy grave of Abu Ayub al Ansari (R.A) which has religious significance.
The breath taking and mesmerizing beauty of Turkey was experienced at Princess Island and Abant seven Lakes. A students says that: "Turkey is naturally blessed with greenery similar to our northern areas and it is example for us enhance our tourism industry as well. Turkey is very patriotic country where Turkish flags are flying at every historic and cultural sites and this could be "definitely be something we can learn from to develop our own "Brand Pakistan."
In a nutshell, it was an amazing learning experience with unforgettable memories especially because of the hospitability of Turkish people towards Pakistan. The trip also allowed the students to begin building an international network of business contacts and friends, while sourcing job opportunities for the future. Students were thankful to Dean Saeed Ghani for supporting these learning opportunities, Mr. Jami Moiz and the IBA Marketing Club for arranging this trip. Adding more to this, the efforts of Travel Shop Turkey tour guide "Turgay Polat" were highly appreciated who was so well informed and entertained students with interesting anecdotes about Turkey throughout the trip.