Most writers and journalists can agree, that there is nothing more captivating and enjoyable than meeting enthusiastic, passionate individuals who not only perform their jobs spectacularly well, but really care about every aspect involved in their respective industries- whether that means the development of the company they serve, the culture and heritage they maintain, the development they seek or the community surrounding them.
İbrahim Bağman, CEO of the Oscar Group, is most certainly one of those people. In meeting with him, I was able to quickly establish that this gentleman was immensely proud of the Group he represented, and of the years of hard work and genius of the Oscar group team which has made the Group one of the most (if not the most) successful Group of companies in North Cyprus.
İbrahim Bağman initially completed University with a degree in Banking and Finance. Despite successfully mastering this qualification, Mr Bağman tells me
“I couldn’t visualise myself working in a regimented office job”.
After he began working for the Oscar Group a little over two decades ago in 1997 as the head of catering for the Oscar Group of Hotels, Mr Bağman commenced and completed another university degree in Tourism, passing with high honours and paving the way which has lead him into the successful career he enjoys today.
With an intricate mind for planning and development and a natural eye for detail, Mr Bağman began to contribute to the construction and development of the Hotel sector within the Oscar Group.
In 2003, Mr Bağman became heavily involved in the purchase, restoration and completion of the Bellapais Monastary Hotel in Kyrenia. The Bellapais Project commenced in 2003 and continued until it’s opening in 2005. Mr Bağman took the position as Manager of the Hotel. The Hotel which, attracted mainly adults seeking peaceful retreat, has hosted thousands of tourists from Europe and the UK since it’s opening and remains one of the most popular Hotels in North Cyprus.
While the Bellapais project was still in progress, in 2004, Mr Bağman began with a further investment project and commenced the development of what is now the luxurious Vuni Hotel. The two year project, completed in 2006, offers 270 beautiful rooms.
Another new investment opportunity became the subject of Mr Bağman’s attention in 2010. The Grand Pasha Hotel- a familiar Hotel with both residents and swallows alike. After it’s completion in 2014, the Hotel hosts 128 stunning rooms and has now been rented to a private businessman who has maintained the
quality, style and service set by the Oscar Group.
The Olive Tree Hotel, nestled in the mountains of Çatalköy, Kyrenia became Mr Bağmans next project, followed by the Rebecca Boutique Hotel in Famagusta.
In 2014, with a new vision for the Oscar Petrol sector, the group began selling petrol to well-known brands and vendors all over the island. It is highly likely that you have filled up your tank with petrol delivered to your local station by the Oscar Group!
In the same year, Oscar Rent-a-Car expanded their operations and now has fleets of hundreds of high quality rental cars. As recently as this month (July 2018), the Oscar group further expanded business. Reaching out to the Far East to find high quality, affordable and reliable car brands suitable for the economic capability of the population in North Cyprus with durability to match the terrain on the island.
After reaching successful trade deals between the Oscar Group and BAIC, DFSK and Landarind, the Oscar group has now began importing these vehicles into the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus, and in fact, sold 8 cars within the first two weeks of opening their showroom.
I asked Mr Bağman about how he views the boom in development and tourism in North Cyprus. He said “Since 2000, Turkey has opened the doors to investment opportunities. Not only for Turkish Cypriots in North Cyprus, but has captured the attention and vision of many foreign investors who have seen the potential of our Island as well as its natural beauty, culture, and the many things we have to offer here. It is through Turkey’s economic progress and credit which has allowed so many businessmen to carry out successful projects which has not only brought hundreds of thousands of tourists to the North, but has also developed the infrastructure and construction sector, thus, raising the standard of living and property value in North Cyprus.”
He continued, “The Northern Tour Agency has reached out to many European countries and promoted what we have to offer on our Island, which has also pulled in thousands upon thousands of tourists every year. We have one of the most successful winter tourism industries in the world, and even outside of what is considered ‘peak season’, the Hotels here are rarely, if ever empty during the winter. I have to credit Hüseyin Oscar for his success in reaching out to so many European Countries and sourcing the connections which has led to such a successful winter tourism industry in North Cyprus”
So, what is the future for tourism in North Cyprus? Mr Bağman said; “I think the future really looks upon Eco tourism. We have some of the most beautiful, natural landscape in the world, and it is important to exhibit this to visitors and yet, vital to maintain the nature, beauty and wildlife it holds. Camping retreats and eco-friendly resorts are certainly the way to go”
Mr Bağman so very clearly loves his work, and truly cares about each and every individual aspect which goes into what he does. It is this labour of love which has contributed to his success, and we are pleased to know that such companies exist- who have the love, care, commitment and future vision to continue bringing North Cyprus into the limelight of the international arena which has and will certainly contribute to the recognition of a Northern Cypriot Island which Very Much exists.