Turgut Tuncay Önbilgin

President of Istanbul Investment Agency

Born in 1962 in Erzurum.

He completed his undergraduate studies in METU Chemical Engineering and his master’s (MBA) education was at the University of Toledo in the USA.

In 1990, he started working as a specialist in Budget Control Directorate at TÜPRAŞ, where he studied as a scholarship holder.

He took part in public offering and privatization research as Investor Relations Manager. After TÜPRAŞ’s privatization, he worked in various positions such as investor relations and planning manager, financial planning, and management compilation director.

Önbilgin has an advanced-level capital market activities license and corporate governance rating license.

Önbilgin took office in the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality in 2019 as the Deputy Secretary-General for Financial Affairs and has been serving as the Chairman of the Istanbul Investment Agency as of May 2021.

Elif Karabay

General Manager 


Born in Kocaeli, Turkey, Elif Karabay started her undergraduate degree in Computer Technology and Programming at Bilkent University. She was awarded a full scholarship during her studies thanks to her triumphant entry into the “Smart Data Management” competition. Later she was transferred and graduated from the University of Politecnico di Milano.

She kickstarted her career in automation programming in Yokogawa, Italy. Afterwards as a Senior Executive, she developed valuable skills while working in private multinational companies on ERP projects, KVKK/GDPR processes, incorporation and legislative compliance in the media, technology, service, and finance sectors.

Karabay coordinated the legal practices of multinational companies in different countries with official institutions, as well as domestic and foreign company establishments and legislative compliance. Thanks to these projects she has completed, she has gained competence in European Union, American and South American legislation and practices.

She has worked with International Investment banks such as AFD, EBRD, Black Sea in finding financing for public institutions, multinational private companies and their projects, and has taken an active role in providing the necessary financing source for many important projects. She is one of the architects of Turkey’s first Municipality (IMM) Eurobond issuance.

As of June 2020, she started her duty at Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM) where she managed the KVKK compliance processes plus as a Advisor to the General Secretariat in the field of financial projects and foreign investor management. 

As of September 2021, Karabay started her duty at İYA Danışmanlık ve Ticaret A.Ş., the legal entity of the Istanbul Investment Agency.  She continues her duty as the General Manager.

She has a good command of both English and Italian. She plays an active role in non-profit organisations such as “Women in Computing”.


Vice President in Charge of International Project Management and Promotion


Asena Selçuk who studied at Ankara Gazi Anatolian High School and Department of Political Sciences of Ankara University (MÜLKİYE-1999), completed her postgraduate education with the AOTS Program within the scope of Japanese Government Scholarship and Marmara University Faculty of Communication Advertising and Publicity departments.

She worked as a European Union Expert at the Ministry of Industry and Technology, Business Council Regional Coordinator under the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK), Ata Holding A.Ş. and Ata Yatırım Menkul Kıymetler A.Ş. as the Corporate Communications Director. She also provided communication, international relations, and business development consultancy to a wide range of organizations like NGOs, universities, foreign relations, education, energy, food, technology, tourism, construction, sports, telecommunications, law, and real estate.

She is experienced in the coordination and organization of national and international projects jointly carried out with the Presidency, Prime Ministry, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Development, Ministry of European Union, and Turkish business organizations and foundations organized abroad.

Her experiences in the program, content, promotion, and organization coordination gained during her international professional career are as follows: In addition to the New York Investment Conference, business delegation meetings were held in Brussels, Berlin, Geneva, Düsseldorf, Amsterdam, Beijing, Washington, Tokyo, Maastricht, Moscow, Baku, Oman, Rotterdam, Milan, Greece, Jeddah, Kyiv, Skopje, Cairo, Baku, Ashgabat and Almaty. She also organized Burger King “Berlin and Miami Summits”. In addition to these, she prepared the entire communication strategy for the investment meeting launch of the “Partnership agreement in the electricity generation business in Turkey” signed between Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd and Üründül Group.


Nihat Narin

February 2020 – April 2021

Nihat Narin presently is the general manager of BELBİM Inc., a subsidiary of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM).


Cem Oba

Senior Advisor


Having more than 25 years of experience in the investment banking sector, Mr. Oba is a graduate of İstanbul Technical University (B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1991), and University of Baltimore Maryland (M.S. in Finance in 1995). After graduation, was employed at Dean Witter-Morgan Stanley, where he conducted equity research on the NYSE & Nasdaq companies (Biotech-& Financials) and marketing of 401 Plan for regional companies.

In Turkey, Mr. Oba has worked for Interbank in Corporate Banking Department, at Kent Investments executing IPOs as a corporate finance manager. He held an executive position on restructuring of the state bank, and coaching the branches of Halk Bank. Later Mr. Oba worked with the Ireland-based M&A house, Jasper Capital, executing M&A deals. Later, as a managing director at ICBC Investment Securities Turkey, Mr. Oba was responsible for Investment Banking Department;the Fixed Income (Eurobonds), Project Finance, Global Syndication, M&A Department and investment banking activities of 16 regional countries of ICBC coverage.