Consulting sector can be defined as a commercial and professional activity category formed by real persons or legal entities consisting of experts specialized in certain fields to transfer their knowledge, experience and skills in required fields and provide actionable strategies to real or legal persons who obtain consultancy from them. In general, it is expected by customers that the real and/or legal persons who will provide consultancy are professionally specialised and equipped in a certain field for many years, that they are provided with an impartial consultancy service, and that the interests of the institutions and individuals who will receive the consultancy are prioritised.

Individuals reach out to consulting firms to send experts specialised in certain industries who are also known as consultants, to observe and analyse a companies’ operations we can say. Consulting companies often start with a SWOT analysis for their customers and provide a guide and a feedback for the company to achieve its corporate goals. 

Real persons or legal entities can apply to consulting companies to obtain qualified consultancy services on many different sectors such as management consultancy, human resources consultancy, real estate consultancy, trademark and patent consultancy, project management consultancy, information technology consultancy and educational counselling.

Especially when we take a look at the field of management consultancy, which is in great demand in the sector, it can be clearly seen that companies prefer such type of consultancy firms for many reasons such as growing in the market, developing the company with a comprehensive transformation and making the company more competitive in the market, preparation for entering into a trade area where the company has not operated before or for example with the aim to reduce corporate costs and to increase capital.

Therefore, if you are willing to establish and register a consulting firm in Turkey, it is important to determine which business line/(s) you will operate in. The field of activity of the company you will establish will be determined in line with the Statistical Classification of Economic Activities in the European Community (NACE) Codes. It is possible for the companies to apply to the relevant chamber of commerce in Turkey to change the NACE codes of their company at any time after the establishment. 

In order to register a consulting firm in Turkey, getting support from an expert team of lawyers with years of experience in fields such as Corporation law, company establishment and commercial law will both legally guide you and shield your interests.

If you want to register a consulting firm in Turkey, you can contact with our law firm in Turkey specialized on company formation in Turkey and obtain detailed information. Our lawyers prepare you for post-establishment transactions even before the company is established, provide you detailed information regarding the company establishment procedures and legally assist you in any matter you need after your business is set up in accordance with the sector you are commercially active in. 

The Consulting Market in Turkey 

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank has described Turkey as a country having an emerging market economy. By economists, Turkey is classified as a newly industrialised country (NIC). Emerging markets are important to foreign investors enabling the investors to build a brand in a territory with little or no competition and to gain prestige for expanding to an emerging market and growing the capital.

Turkey indeed is a very attractive country for foreign investors offering greater returns to investors due to its rapid growth and governmental incentives. We can say that more than twelve thousand companies with foreign capital are established in our country every year. In order to obtain detailed information regarding why foreign investors choose to invest in Turkey, you review our Article, “International Foreign Investment Law”.

As these foreign investors from Germany, Holland, United States and many other countries investing in Turkey are willing to learn more about the relevant sector in Turkish market, to do a competitor analysis and to be recognized and grow in the relevant market, the need for consultancy firms is growing visibly day by day.

On the other hand, Turkey as an emerging market has a dense young population constituting a promising dynamic work force and a capability to produce considerable goods and services which is also one of the reasons luring foreign investors to invest in Turkey. It is important to mention that young people chose to enter into the market as entrepreneurs thus building their own companies in the market without years of experience in their careers and/or knowledge on sectoral basis also increase the need for consulting firms.  

Foreign investors can act alone for setting up a Business as a sole trader in Turkey. And there are no requirements expected to be fulfilled or qualifications to be met or any certain type of certification to be obtained by the investor as per law regarding the subject which makes the investment more attractive for the foreign investors. For any foreign investor setting starting up a consulting firm in Turkey, it is easy to establish a company.

As per The Business Research Company data, global management consulting services market is expected to grow from $ 891.88 billion to $ 973.67 billion on 2022 at a compound annual growth rate of 9.2%.1 In todays’ Turkey, many institutions and organisations especially Small and Medium Sized Enterprises based in Turkey, benefit from consultancy being in the first place management consulting services intensively in many internationally approved fields.

Ministry of Development of Turkish Republic states with Eleventh (2019 – 2023) Development Plan, Management Consulting Services Working Group Report, the size of the management consulting market in the World reached to 251 Billion USD as of the end of 2016, and the EMEA region including Turkey, constitutes 41% of the World’s consultancy market.

It has also been stated in the report that the total income earned by the management consultants in Turkey is 2.5 Billion TL (as of December 2017 exchange rates, this income corresponds to 650 Million United States Dollars). According to the same working group report, it was emphasised that the current trend in the market is a clear segmentation of management consulting companies.2

Types of Consulting Companies in Turkey

Without being limited with those listed herein, if you are willing to set up a consulting company in Turkey, you can choose to act in the areas stated below. 

  • You can set up an IT company acting in the field of information technology for the needs of real or legal entities based in Turkey willing to technologically – digitally accord and grow.
  • You can set up accounting and auditing companies providing monthly accounting and consultation services regarding corporate taxation in Turkey.
  • You can set up a real estate consulting company in Turkey providing pre-development consultancy, market analysis, financial analysis and modelling, transaction due diligence and many other consultation services.
  • You can set up a human resources consulting company in Turkey providing consultancy regarding personnel training planning, personnel hiring and disemployment, management of employees, etc. 
  • Bearing in mind there are thousands of foreigner real persons coming to Istanbul to take a cost effective education, you can set up an educational counselling company in Turkey assisting foreigner real persons with their careers, their applications to academies and also assist them with their residence permits.
  • You can set up a company utilising management consulting services to provide consultation on organisational issues, human resources, finance, marketing and Business strategy providing services in a wide range of sectors such as McKinsey & Company, PwC, EY, KPMG and Deloitte. 
  • You can set up a consulting company in order to outsource consulting services under PEO, EOR, BPO and ASO in a hybrid way and as a package. 

How To Register As Consulting Business in Turkey 2023

It is important for a real person or legal entity who will register as consulting Business in Turkey to determine the type of company he will establish following up determining the sector in which he will commercially operate. Consulting companies are usually established as limited liability companies or joint stock companies. Depending on the type of company you are willing to establish, the documents, legal process and timeline required for company establishment vary.

Joint stock companies are more difficult to establish, based on the required documents and procedures. Again, the documents required for company establishment in Turkey will change depending on whether the partner of the company you will establish is a foreigner real person or a legal entity. You can find detailed information about the documents you need to prepare as per company type you will establish in Turkey and the establishment procedures to be followed from the section titled “Corporation and Commercial Law” we have published through our web page. 

If you are going to establish a sole proprietorship or a limited liability company with one real person partner, the company establishment procedure is quite easy and fast. If you are going to establish a limited liability company with one partner in Turkey, it will be sufficient for you to present your ID proving your foreign ID number, your residency permit document, if any, passport photo taken within the last 6 months, notarized passport translation and a power of attorney proving that you have authorised our lawyers and send them in our head office based in Istanbul.

Afterwards, our lawyers prepare the Articles of Association, trade title and NACE codes in accordance with your instructions and business and market the relevant application through MERSIS and get an appointment for physical establishment. In this way, your consultancy company can be established in a maximum of five days. The important thing here is that some post-establishment transactions such as obtaining trade registry certificate and corporate books, sometimes having the books prepared at the notary, issuance and notarization of the signature circular of the company, issuance and notarization of a power of attorney in order to authorize an accountant, shall not be skipped, these are separate transactions that shall be followed with experts.

Our law firm in Turkey is all about empowering you with knowledge; however we will suggest you to proceed with a professional team regarding company establishment since pre and post company establishment procedures require experience and legal knowledge. Our law firm in Turkey, with its English speaking lawyers can understand the needs of your business and legally assist you with its cost effective pocket services.

Requirements for Setting up a Turkish Consulting Business

Foreigners can own a company in full and transfer their profit out of Turkey without any problems. Foreign capital can be brought to a corporate bank account opened in Turkey without any problems but shall be exchanged to Turkish Liras as per Turkish Commercial Code and Trade Registry Regulation. There are no formal and administrative standards and requirements for providing consulting services in Turkey. Turkish law does not require investors to provide their personal information to be investigated or exhibited in public records either.

On the other hand, like all the other merchants acting within the borders of Turkey, since you will be subject to Turkish Law, you will be obliged to follow the general company establishment procedures and company formation requirements stated under Turkish Law. Our law firm is able to form and set up your company remotely and open your bank account with a Power of Attorney if you are not present in Turkey in a short period of time. 

The Process of Registering a Company in Turkey

English speaking Turkish lawyers of our law firm are always prepared to assist you to set up a business in Turkey, obtain a tax registration number in Turkey, establish a company in Turkey and open a corporate bank account in Turkey. Our lawyers are specialised and experienced on limited liability company establishment in Turkey, branch office formation in Turkey, liaison office formation in Turkey, opening a free zone company in Turkey, joint stock company establishment in Turkey and providing company management and governing services in Turkey.

We have assisted hundreds of clients from Russia to United Kingdom, from Germany to the United States of America, from Lebanon to Italy regarding company establishment in Turkey. We also provide company address services for our clients until they manage to buy a property in Turkey or find a place to rent until they physically come into operation.

As we have mentioned earlier, you can obtain detailed information especially regarding the procedures of company establishment in Turkey as per the company type you are willing to establish through the Article we have published with the name “Commercial and Corporation Law”. However we have indicated herein a general route to make you understand the content of procedures of company establishment in Turkey. 

  • Assisting Clients regarding issuance of Power of Attorney for our lawyers regarding company establishment in Turkey.
  • Reserving company trade titles through MERSİS.
  • Translation and notarization of the partner’s passport.
  • Obtaining tax id numbers for each partner from the relevant tax office. 
  • Arranging a virtual office and an accountant for the company, signing a lease contract for the company address.
  • Initiating company establishment procedures through MERSİS, filing company details, preparing the articles of association before the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce online, reserving a date for physical company establishment before the relevant Istanbul Chamber of Commerce.
  • Conducting and completing physical establishment and signing the articles of association on behalf of the partner.
  • Obtaining certificate of trade registry and corporate books from the Chamber of Commerce. 
  • Obtaining signature circular for the company before a Notary Public. 
  • Assisting the company established in Turkey to issue a Power of Attorney for an accountant.
  • Opening a company bank account and assisting clients to transfer the capital.
  • Providing legal consultancy to the client on different topics that client requires such as tax liabilities, acquiring a real estate property in Turkey, Turkish citizenship, company governance, recruitment and employment and brand protection and registration.

Consulting Services in Turkey 

The consulting services industry in Turkey has seen significant growth in recent years, driven by a diverse range of sectors and industries seeking professional guidance. These services encompass a wide array of specialties, including management consulting, financial advisory, legal consulting, IT consulting, human resources, real estate consulting, construction consulting and tax consulting. Key players in the Turkish consulting market include both domestic firms and international consulting giants.

  • Management Consulting in Turkey: Turkish businesses, from small startups to large corporations, turn to management consultants for strategic planning, organizational development, and operational efficiency. With the aim of increasing competitiveness in both domestic and international markets, companies seek advice on various aspects, including market entry strategies, mergers and acquisitions, and digital transformation.
  • Real Estate Consulting in Turkey: Turkey’s strategic location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, coupled with its rich history and diverse culture has made it an attractive destination for real estate investment. Morevoer Turkey grants Turkish citizenship to real persons who buy a real estate property with the value of at least 400,000 USD and don’t sell it to third parties within 3 years. Our country boasts a range of properties, from historic homes and beachfront resorts to modern office buildings and urban developments. In addition, investing in real estate in our country is a sensible investment option for individuals, as it can quickly multiply the money they intend to invest in real estate. It is strongly recommended for foreigners to buy real estate in Turkey because this way, foreigners can not only multiply the money they intend to invest in real estate but also obtain Turkish citizenship and continue to generate income by renting out their real estate even when they return to their own country. The Turkish real estate market offers diverse opportunities, which have led to a growing demand for consulting services. 
  • Construction Consulting in Turkey: Starting a construction consulting business in Turkey can be a lucrative venture due to the country’s robust construction industry and rapid urbanization. A construction firm in Turkey typically offers a wide range of services related to the planning, design, management, and execution of construction projects. Creating building layouts and aesthetics, designing the structural elements of buildings, designing infrastructure, such as roads and bridges, planning HVAC, electrical, and plumbing systems, designing interior spaces for aesthetics and functionality, sourcing materials and subcontractors, executing the construction of residential, commercial, and industrial buildings, providing ongoing maintenance and repair services, upgrading or modifying existing structures, conducting assessments for property acquisition and development, assessing the viability of construction projects are amongs the many services a contruction consulting business in Turkey can provide. On the other hand, there is a significant amount of investment in the construction sector in Turkey, but these should not deter investors. Turkey is located on the East Anatolian Fault Zone and the North Anatolian Fault Zone. Due to the major earthquakes that have occurred in Turkey and will occur in the future especially in Istanbul, earthquake-prone areas will suffer heavy damage, making it necessary for construction companies to build earthquake-resistant structures.
  • Financial Advisory in Turkey: The financial sector in Turkey has been expanding rapidly, and this has created a significant demand for financial advisory services. Consulting firms help clients with financial planning, risk management, investment strategies, and regulatory compliance.
  • IT Consulting in Turkey: In Turkey, information technology consulting services are in high demand. Turkish businesses rely on technology consultants to implement and optimize their IT infrastructure, enhance cybersecurity measures, harness emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and cloud computing, offer expertise in software development methodologies, assist in software project management, guide companies in outsourcing IT functions to third party services providers, offer training programs for employees to enhance their IT skills, ensure that clients’ IT systems and practices comply with industry specific regulations and standards, and much more.
  • Health Tourism Company in Turkey: Health tourism in Turkey has gained significant popularity in recent years, attracting visitors from around the world seeking high-quality medical treatments and wellness services at competitive prices. However, in recent times, there has been an increase in malpractice lawsuits against hospitals and doctors in Turkey. One of the leading reasons for this is that health tourism companies provide misleading and inaccurate information to foreigners and direct patients to doctors who are not specialists in their field, low-quality hospitals, or individuals who operate as if they were licensed but lack the necessary qualifications. Turkey attracts a significant number of patients from abroad who seek aesthetic interventions. To ensure the proper guidance of these patients, there is a need for trustworthy health tourism companies in the sector and willing to provide also after-care services for the patient, enabling the company follow up patients post-operation health condition.
  • Legal Consulting in Turkey: Turkey’s evolving legal landscape requires businesses to stay informed about the latest regulations and navigate complex legal issues. Law firms and legal consultants offer services related to corporate law, legal aspects of commercial transactions, business contracts, mergers and acquisitions, formalities to be followed up before the tax office and chamber of commerce, intellectual and industrial property rights, and much more. Lawyers can provide legal consultation in Turkey. Lawyers can only open a law firm and mentioned law firm cannot be in the form of a limited liability company or a joint stock company since lawyers cannot enter into trade as per Attorney’s Act.
  • Human Resources Consulting in Turkey: As the labor market in Turkey becomes more competitive, organizations seek assistance in talent acquisition, workforce development, and employee engagement. And human resources consultants provide solutions to enhance productivity and maintain a motivated workforce.

Tax Consulting Turkey

Starting a tax consulting business in Turkey can be a promising venture due to the complex tax regulations and compliance requirements in the country. Tax consultants play a crucial role in helping individuals and businesses navigate the Turkish tax system efficiently and ensure compliance with tax laws. Tax consulting services generally include persone income tax consulting, corporate tax planning and compliance, international tax advisory, tax audit representation, tax optimization strategies, tax registration of companies, value added tax and customs duty consulting, tax compliance and reporting, monthly tax statements and company book keeping. These services in Turkey are being provided by certified public accountants.

Consultancy Firm Registration

Registering a consultancy firm in Turkey involves several steps and compliance with legal and administrative requirements. Here’s a general guide on consultancy firm registration:

1. Determine the Legal Structure: Decide on the legal structure of your consultancy firm. Common options include a sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC) or joint stock company (JSC). The choice depends on your preferences, the number of partners, and the extent of liability you are willing to assume.

2. Choose a Business Name: Select a unique and suitable name for your consultancy firm. Ensure that the chosen name complies with Turkish Commercial Code regulations and can be registered as a brand.

3. Draft the Articles of Association: For an LLC, you need to draft the Articles of Association (Ana Sözleşme). This document outlines the rules and regulations governing your consultancy firm’s operation, including the roles and responsibilities of partners, management, and decision-making processes. Our lawyers can draft the Articles of Association for you which will be in compliance with the Turkish Commercial Code regulations.

4. Register the Business: Register your consultancy firm with the Turkish Trade Registry Gazette (Ticaret Sicil Gazetesi) and the relevant trade registry office (Ticaret Sicili Müdürlüğü) in the city where your firm will operate. This registration process involves submitting required documents, including the Articles of Association, and paying registration fees. Our lawyers will prepare your application dossier and will make the registration through MERSİS system first.

5. Obtain a Tax Identification Number: Apply for a Tax Identification Number (Vergi Kimlik Numarası) from the local tax office (Vergi Dairesi). This number is essential for your firm’s tax obligations. Our certified public accountant will handle this phase for you after registration of the limited liability company before Istanbul Chamber of Commerce.

6. Register with the Turkish Social Security Institution (SGK): If you plan to employ staff, you must register your consultancy firm with the Turkish Social Security Institution (Sosyal Güvenlik Kurumu – SGK). This registration ensures that your employees receive social security benefits. Our certified public accountant will handle this phase for you after registration of the limited liability company before Istanbul Chamber of Commerce. 

7. Acquire Necessary Permits and Licenses: Check whether your consultancy services require any specific permits or licenses. Depending on the nature of your consultancy, you may need industry-specific certifications or authorizations.

8. Open a Business Bank Account: Open a business bank account in the name of your consultancy firm. This account will be used for financial transactions, including payments and receipts. This bank account shall be opened in a bank that is based in the same area with your company address. 

9. Comply with Tax Obligations: Understand and comply with Turkey’s tax laws. Register your consultancy firm with the local tax office and fulfill all tax obligations, including income tax, corporate tax (if applicable), and VAT (Value Added Tax). After registering your limited liability company in Istanbul, you will start to work with a certified public accountant we will introduce you. You have to obtain monthly accounting services from the mentioned certified public accountant in order to make sure you comply with Turkish tax regulations.

10. Hire Employees (if needed): If your consultancy firm plans to employ staff, follow the legal requirements for hiring and managing employees, including employment contracts and payroll. You can benefit from our consultancy services for issuance of employment contracts, non-disclosure agreements, non-compete agreements, employee clarification text, and such.

11. Register for E-Invoice and E-Archive Invoice (if needed): Depending on your business activities, you may need to register for electronic invoicing (e-invoice) or electronic archive invoice (e-archive invoice) systems. Our certified public accountant will assist you with these requirements. 

12. Keep Proper Records: Maintain accurate and organized financial records, as proper bookkeeping and accounting practices are essential for tax compliance. Our certified public accountant will assist you with these requirements.

Please note that this is a general overview of the registration process for a consultancy firm in Turkey. Specific requirements and procedures may vary depending on the location and nature of your business activities. It’s highly recommended to consult with a local business advisor or attorney who can provide tailored guidance and support throughout the registration process.

Advantages of registering a company in Turkey  

There are many advantages of registering a company in Turkey several being the ones stated below:

  • It is possible to establish a limited liability company in Turkey with 10.000 TL capital and pay the capital within 24 months.
  • Establishing a company in another country might cost you a fortune but establishing, operating and governing a company in Turkey will be cost-effective in many ways. Minimum wage to be paid to your employees for example will be very low. 
  • A company can be established only with one partner and that only partner can be appointed as the manager at the same time. 
  • Young consumer population following the trends is very high. With a great brand and marketing strategy you can be recognized in the market in a short period of time.
  • Foreign investors can obtain Turkish citizenship by making an investment in Turkey. Citizenship can be acquired by buying a property, making an investment, creating employment or bank deposit with certain requirements specified in law. For example, as per Article 20 of the Regulation on the Implementation of the Turkish Citizenship Law, a foreigner determined by the Ministry of Labour and Social Security to employ at least 50 real person can acquire Turkish Citizenship by exceptional means. In order to obtain more information regarding obtaining Turkish Citizenship by exceptional means, you can review our web page and find our Article “Commercial and Corporation Law” and “Immigration Law”. 
  • You may prefer to invest in Turkey due to a liberal and foreign investment-oriented investment environment and incentives Turkish Government provides. Foreigners can apply to the Ministry of Industry and Technology in order to obtain an Investment Inventive Certificate (IIC) which grants land allocation, VAT and custom duty exemption, tax deduction, social security premium support and many other incentives.

REFERENCES:

1 The Business Research Company, Global Management Consulting Services Market Report 2022 – Market Forecast, Trends And Strategies, 3 Feb, 2022.

2 T. C. Kalkınma Bakanlığı On Birinci Kalkınma Planı (2019 – 2023), Yönetim Danışmanlığı Hizmetleri Çalışma Grubu Raporu, Ankara 2018

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