Success Story of

Muhammet Sait Sellah

Muhammet Sait Sellah was born in Aleppo in 1991 and is a primary school graduate. Today, he lives in Sultanbeyli, Istanbul, and runs a grocery store. In June, he applied to the “Şirketim” project in order to get support for the legal registration of his business and completed all the necessary formalization procedures.

Before emigrating to Turkey, he lived in Aleppo, Syria. At that time, he was engaged in advertising and lived with his family. In 2013, at the height of the Syrian civil war, he and his family decided that it would be better for their lives to leave Syria, and they enter Turkey through Idlib. After their arrival in Turkey, they have come to the Umraniye district of Istanbul.

Like millions of Syrians, he faced the difficulties of living as a refugee in another country. The process of finding a job was difficult, wages were low, he was working informally, and lack of Turkish prevented him from working in the field of his profession. He worked as a sewer in a textile workshop and as a tailor until he established his own business. At the same time, while working there, he got married and began living with his wife. While working as a tailor, he gained experience in running a business and decided to start his own business. He started his business by opening a grocery store. However, for a year, he did not complete any of the legal requirements that every business operating in Turkey obliged to complete; therefore, he operated an informal business. Due to this situation, he constantly felt insecure while working, and he faced various problems. He states that the reason for not taking the necessary actions is that he did not have the necessary information and cannot afford the cost that emerges following the formalization.

Prior to the project, he did not know anything about United Work and GIZ. When one of the field officers of the United Work paid a visit to his workplace, he learned about both organizations and the project. When the officers explained the project in detail, he learned in detail both his duties and responsibilities and the support to be provided by the project. After participating in the project, he benefited from all the support provided by the project. The tax and chamber registrations, e-signature, work permit, and municipal license issuance procedures have been completed, as well as the inventory, which is mandatory in the formalization process. Besides, some of the financial loss he faced during the COVID-19 pandemic has been covered by the financial support provided within the scope of the project, and he states that this support was genuinely important for the sustainability of his business.

Muhammet is very happy to complete the formalization of his workplace. He no longer feels fear and anxiety from the legal authorities, and many of the problems he had previously encountered have been overcome. In this context, he states that the project is a successful project and should continue to support micro-businesses. In addition, he thanks everyone who contributed to the project.

When asked about his ideas about the future, he states that he wants to improve both himself and his business. He wants to expand and to spread his business by opening new branches in different districts. Nevertheless, he needs more financial support to achieve this goal. In social aspects, he feels happy in Turkey. He has good relations with his friends and neighbors and does not face any racism. Therefore, he feels loyalty to Turkey and wants to spend the rest of his life. He does not want to return to Syria because he wants to live without fear of war, and Turkey is a true place to offer a better future to his children.