Cuneyd Zapsu | MEMBER

H. Cuneyd Zapsu born in Istanbul on November 19, 1956, completed his primary education in Munich. Graduating from the German High School Istanbul he studied Business Administration at the Istanbul University and Economics at the Ludwig Maximillian University, Munich.

His business life began in 1977 at family-owned Azizler Holding’s various companies, where he held managerial and Board Member positions. In 2001, Mr. Zapsu decided to pause his long business career in favor of becoming one of the founders of the Justice and Development Party (AK Parti). In the period that followed (2001-2008) he served as Special Assistant and Information Coordinator to Party Chairman R. T. Erdogan, as well as serving in the highest tier of the party: The Central Decision Board. In March 2008, Mr. Zapsu resigned from all active duties in the party and returned to the business world. Right after he founded Cuneyd Zapsu Consultancy Inc., a company that provides international investment and management consulting services. Additionally, Mr. Zapsu is owner or main shareholder of several companies such as Balsu Gıda Inc, one of the leading hazelnut processors and exporters in the world.

Meanwhile Mr. Zapsu served as the President of the Istanbul Exporters Association, as a member of International Investors Association (YASED) and a member of the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV), The Founding Chairman of the Hazelnut Promotion Group founded in Ankara, and served as the Founding Co-Chairman of the World Hazelnut Council, New Jersey. After serving as a member of the Executive Committee of the International Treenut and Dried Fruit Council (INC) Spain, he then served as its president and remains a member of its Executive Board. Mr. Zapsu has been a member of the Turkish Industrialists and Businessmen Association (TUSIAD) since 1986, is a Board Member of the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK), Vice-Chairman of the Board of the Turkish-American Business Council and Vice-Chairman of the Board of the Turkish-German Business Council. He serves as the Senior Advisor of the World Economic Forum (WEF) and Founding Member and Vice Chairman of the Public Policy and Democracy Studies Association (PODEM).

Between 1987 - 2004, Mr. Zapsu received the annually gold plate trophies and medals for the “Best Exporter of Turkey” Award bestowed by The Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, Istanbul Chamber of Industry and Undersecretary of Foreign Trade.

In 2007, for services in the development of relations between Germany and Turkey, Mr. Zapsu received the Federal Order of Merit from the President of the Federal Republic of Germany.

In 2015, the World Nut and Dried Fruit Congress (INC) honored Mr. Zapsu with Golden Nut Award.

He is married, has three daughters and six grandchildren.