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ABOUT US

Executives

Robert Yuksel YILDIRIM – Chairman & CEO

Robert Yuksel Yildirim is the President and CEO of Yildirim Group of Companies. He was born in Sivas, Turkey in 1960. He received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Istanbul Technical University in 1983. In 1989, he received his master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Oregon State University. He began his career as a design and project engineer at Paceco Corporation, working for five years at the container crane manufacturing firm.

Robert Yuksel Yildirim joined the management board of the family-owned company in 1993. The same year, he conducted the first international achievement of the company, directly importing coal from Russia. Robert Yuksel Yildirim led the group in new initiatives in the 2000s, and in 2008, the Group made its first international acquisition in Sweden.

Today, Yildirim Group is a global player in metals and mining, port management, coal and coke, fertilizers and chemicals, energy, and maritime industry. Lloyd’s List ranks Robert Yuksel Yildirim among the top 100 most influential people in the shipping industry, and among top 10 most powerful people in container terminals industry. Consulting company Drewry lists him as one of the top 20 global leaders in port operations. Robert Yuksel Yildirim is also among the top three leaders of the global chromium industry.

In addition to his responsibilities at Yildirim Group, he is a Board Member of CMA CGM Group, and Yildirim Group owns 24% of its shares. He is also a Member of the Board of Trustees at Garip & Zeycan Yildirim Foundation, and the Chairman of Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK) Turkey-Colombia Business Council.

Robert Yuksel Yildirim has two children.

 
Boris WENZEL - co-CEO & Chief Strategy & Investment Officer

Boris Wenzel gained his first experiences working in New York and London before starting as a junior banker in Asia at the Bangkok Bank of Commerce in 1995, and with the advent of the 1997 Asian crisis became a Turn-Around Specialist involved in restructuring several companies in various industries until 1999.

He was then hired by a US private equity firm for his first role in the port sector at Eastern Sea Laem Chabang Terminal Co Ltd (ESCO) in 1999 where he held President and COO as the latest position in 2003. He helped the private equity firm to sell its stake to PSA International in 2003 and until 2006, he worked for PSA International as the global troubleshooter to PSA’s Group CEO, rescuing their investment in Sines, being involved in the restructuring of the PSA HNN holdings in Belgium, assisting in the take-over of PSA’s terminal in Mersin, and securing a first major terminal concession in India for PSA International.

He was subsequently hired in 2008 by Macquarie bank to rescue their troubled investment in Poland, DCT Gdansk SA, where he served as Chief Executive Officer until 2013 and later by JP Morgan at noatum, as Chief Operations Officer between 2013 and 2016 overseeing a large portfolio of terminals in Spain. While at noatum, he was also elected as President of ANESCO, the national port operator and freight forwarder association of Spain.

In 2016 he was recruited by CMA CGM as Managing Director of Terminal Link SAS, a Joint Venture between CMA CGM and China Merchants Port Holdings where he remained until 2021; during his tenure, the portfolio of Terminal Link increased from 12 to 21 terminals. While at Terminal Link SAS, in 2018 he founded TIC4.0, an international industry association regrouping 40 global terminal operators and suppliers to the terminal industry, dedicated to the elaboration of technical and digital standards for the ports and terminal industry, where he continues to hold the title of President.

Since 2021, he has been working as a Senior Advisor for private equity and infrastructure funds and assisted two leading infrastructure funds in successfully securing large minority stakes in European ports.  In August 2022, he was appointed as a non-Executive Vice-Chairman of BMF Port Burgas, in Bulgaria.

Boris Wenzel has more than 20 years of experience in the port industry and at the Board level, Chief Executive and senior leadership roles in Europe and Asia. Boris Wenzel speaks English, French, German, and Spanish fluently. His native language is French.

Mr. WENZEL joined YILPORT Holding co-CEO & Chief Strategy & Investment Officer, as of September 2022.

 
Murat AKBUDAK- Chief Financial Officer

Murat AKBUDAK has a graduate degree in Business Administration from Istanbul University and an Executive MBA from Koç University.

Murat AKBUDAK started his career as a Financial Markets Expert in Thomson Reuters in 2008 and worked in global financial markets field. In addition to working with all the local bank treasuries and brokerage institutes, Murat AKBUDAK received the Best Growing Country Award in Central Eastern Europe (CEE). He worked as a Financial Analyst at TSKB and contributed to Turkey's leading energy projects afterward. After transferring to Eczacıbaşı Securities as an Equity Research Analyst, Murat AKBUDAK provided market reports and valuation service for international investors in the energy and cement sectors.

Since joining YILDIRIM Group in 2012, Murat AKBUDAK has played an active role in both valuation and financing projects of all financial purchases of the group as Project & Acquisition Finance Senior Manager. The financing project in which he took part in with YILDIRIM Group in the mining sector was awarded by EMEA Finance for Best Project Finance Project Deal in CEE and Best Natural Resources Deal in EMEA.

Murat AKBUDAK promoted to YILPORT Inc. as Global Finance Director in 2016 and he continues to work at YILPORT Inc. as Chief Financial Officer since 2020.

 
Erhan CILOGLU - Chief Marketing Officer

Erhan ÇİLOĞLU received his bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Erhan ÇİLOĞLU who started his career in 1999 working at Toyota as a part of the Supply Chain Logistics Division, started to work in the port operations and logistics industry in 2003 taking responsibilities in sales, project management, field actions, marketing and customer relations. Erhan Ciloglu worked in various sectors such as; automotive, white goods, electronics, construction, food, FMCG, textiles, iron, and steel.

After joining YILDIRIM Group in 2012 as a Business Development Manager, Erhan CILOGLU was promoted to the role of CMO of YILPORT Inc. in 2014 and he has direct responsibility for sales, marketing, commerce and customer relations for YILPORT Inc. portfolio in 11 countries 22 terminals globally.

 
Yoshiaki SUEMATSU - Technical Advisor

Yoshiaki SUEMATSU was born in Japan where he completed his degree in Industrial Engineering at Kobe Technical College in Kobe, Japan.

From the beginning of his career, he worked as an executive of Technical Production in Quality Assurance and Site Installation Division at MES, Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. and specialized in the areas of turbomachinery, material handling equipment, main ship engine, bridge construction and offshore rig. Yoshiaki Suematsu worked at PACECO/ESPANA as a Project Director between the years 1999 and 2002 and throughout his career, he specialized in technology fields such as steel material with heat treatment and gear technology.

After joining YILPORT Container Terminal in 2011 as a Maintenance Department Manager, he promoted to the role of CTO of YILPORT Inc. in 2015 and with his experience of more than 50 years in the industry, Yoshiaki Suematsu was appointed as Technical Advisor at YILPORT Inc. in 2020.

 
Raymond HÖHLE – Chief Technical Officer

Raymond HÖHLE received his bachelor’s degree in Engineering at Royal Dutch Navy engineering school in 1987.

Raymond HÖHLE started his career in 1987, as a Technical Specialist Submarines at Royal Dutch Navy, in the Netherlands. From 1991 to 1996, he took worked in various engineering roles. Between 2002 and 2006 he worked at Bopack Systems and APM Terminals as Technical Manager and Senior Manager Technical Services and between the years 2013 and 2020 he worked at Hutchinson Ports Australia, Sydney International Container Terminal and Brisbane Container Terminal as Head of Engineering.

Raymond HÖHLE who has more than 30 years of experience regarding technical management, port services, key projects modifications and technical maintenance, joined YILPORT Inc. as CTO in 2020.

 
Kadir OKCU- Chief Construction and Infrastructure Officer

Kadir OKCU received his bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering at Istanbul Technical University.

Kadir OKCU started his career as a Projects Engineer and worked as a Projects Manager focusing on local and international port projects. Between 1998 and 2009 he worked at SOYAK as Project Manager for Ambarlı Port taking part in various roles for port projects. In 2009, he started to provide consulting and projects management services for various port projects by founding Alp Mühendislik Müşavirlik Ltd. Şti.

Kadir OKCU worked as a consultant in the construction field for YILDIRIM Group of Companies between 2005 and 2016 and started to work at YILDIRIM Group as a Construction Projects Executive Director in 2017. Following his transfer to YILPORT Inc. in 2020, he continues to work at YILPORT Inc. as a Chief Construction and Infrastructure Officer.

 
Rafael SAPIÑA GARCÍA - Chief Terminal Development Officer

Rafael Sapiña GARCÍA was born in Spain where he received his bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering at Politechnical University of Valencia and received his master's degree in Port Management and Multimodal Transport at the IPEC - Universidad Pontificia Comillas – Valencia.

Since then, Rafael Sapiña GARCÍA worked at Condeminas with shipping agencies, logistics, and port operations; at Trasmediterránea – Aucona with the shipping lines as a Commercial Manager. Until 2013 he continued his career as a Director for Shipping and Port Operators at Fundación Valenciaport.

Rafael Sapiña GARCÍA lectured at the IPEC Universidad Pontificia Comillas about port management and multimodal transport. Currently, he works as the Chief Terminal Development Officer of YILPORT Inc.

 
İbrahim DÖLEN - Chief Integration Officer

İbrahim DÖLEN received his bachelor’s degree in Electric and Electronics Engineering at Boğaziçi University in 1990 and his MBA at Istanbul University in 1992. He completed Advanced Management Program at University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School in 2014.

İbrahim Dölen started his career at GTT-Gerber Technology as Sales and Marketing Manager in 1990. Since 1999, he had been in several Executive positions in logistics sector. He worked at Horoz Logistics as Sales and Marketing Deputy General Manager between 1999 – 2002.

İbrahim DÖLEN worked at Borusan Logistics and Borusan Port as CEO between 2002 – 2019 and before joining our company Mr. DÖLEN worked at Hemera Capital Partners as Head of Turkey, and he executed non-executive board member roles. İbrahim Dölen has joined YILPORT Holding as Chief Integration Officer effective as of June 2022.

 
R. Cem GOKTAS - YILPORT Gebze and YILPORT Gemlik General Manager / Global Logistics Center Director

Mr. Cem GOKTAS joined the YILPORT company in 2012. Born in Kocaeli, Turkey in 1982; Mr. GOKTAS has bachelor’s degree Public Administration. Over the years, Mr. GOKTAS worked as a Container Planning Chief, Operations Manager, Global Logistics Center Manager and Global Operations Director respectively. Managing a group of central departments serving multiple terminals in different countries within the role of; Operations Planning, Berth Planning, Data Control, Customer Support and TOS Deployment on a global scale. Mr. Remzi Cem Goktas, promoted to the position of Global Operations Director effective as of 2017. He is responsible for providing operational standards, guidelines and documentation, Global Logistics Center, Audit and Analysis, continuous improvement, HSSE standards and terminal development in entire regions of YILPORT Holding.

Cem GÖKTAŞ was promoted to the position of Global Operations Director in 2017. In 2020, he was promoted to the position of Global Terminal Operations Senior Director. In 2021, Mr. Göktaş was promoted to the position of YILPORT Gebze and YILPORT Gemport General Manager & YILPORT Holding GLC Director.

 

Regional Structure

Alfredo JURADO - Regional General Manager, Corporate Affairs

Alfredo Jurado von Buchwald, with a degree in Business Administration and Port Planning; has more than 40-year experience in Port Management, Logistics, and Transportation.

Alfredo began his career in 1976 at Transmabo S.A, a Noboa Group company, as Operation Deputy Manager, and throughout his career, he assumed important roles such as Manager of Ecuadorian Customs Corporation - Guayaquil District (1998); from CONAM Modernization Council, he actively participated in ports privatization processes, being appointed as General Manager of the Port Authority of Guayaquil in 2001, later becoming Vice President of the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) for 2002-2003 period. Within the Public Function, he also served as an advisor-consultant for the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and the Ministry of Transportation and later as an a CORPEI consultant. Thanks to his vast and recognized experience, he assumes the role of General Manager for YILPORT Puerto Bolivar in 2018 and later in 2020 assumes his current position, the LATAM Regional General Manager and Corporate Affairs for YILPORT Holding.

 
Nuno David SILVA - Iberia Region General Manager

Nuno David Silva received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Management & Administration and Master’s degrees in Port Management and Business Information.

In 1998, Mr. Nuno David Silva started his career in the Corporate Finance and Controlling department at Hanjin Shipping in Germany, and in 1998, he worked as Information Planning & Measures Manager at ABN Amro Bank in Germany. In 2001, Mr. Nuno David Silva returned to Portugal, and joined Gartner Group as a Project Manager.

From 2003, Nuno David Silva continued his career at YILPORT Leixões as Operations Director and subsequently as General Manager since 2017.

Nuno David Silva has considerable depth and breadth of experience in the ports and logistics sectors. Nuno David Silva speaks three languages, English, German, and Spanish fluently as well as speaks Portuguese, his native language.

 
Eryn DINYOVSZKY - Nordic Region General Manager

Eryn DINYOVSZKY holds a B.S. degree in Marine Transportation at California Maritime Academy and an MBA in Shipping, Offshore, and Finance from BI Norwegian School of Management.

Prior to joining YILPORT Nordic, Eryn DINYOVSZKY worked in Abu Dhabi Terminals as Business Development Manager focusing on international business expansion. Also, in her tenure with ADT, she held the role of Transition Project Manager where she led a project team with the responsibility of implementing Khalifa Port, a 2.5 Million TEU green field semi-automated terminal, and transferring the business from its historical city central location to the newly developed industrial clustered location. Eryn DINYOVSZKY also worked for the A.P. Moller group for 10 years in both liner operations and at APM Terminals in various roles and countries.

Eryn DINYOVSZKY joined YILPORT Nordic in 2014 as General Manager of YILPORT’s Nordic Region. This comprises of YILPORT Gavle Bulk and Container Terminal, Stockholm Nord Rail Combi Terminal, YILPORT Oslo, and YILPORT Logistics. She is tasked with further developing Northern business portfolio and introducing new port technology for YILPORT Nordic. 

 
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