Pre-Incubation Process :

The start-ups admitted to ITU ÇEKİRDEK can use the 800 m2 open office located in ARI 3 building in Maslak free of charge as a work office, develop their prototypes in the laboratory area that includes the equipment required for R&D and get one-to-one appointments from over 250 Çekirdek mentors. They develop their projects on canvas business model, financial models and strategies on entering the market with the “Entrepreneurship Training” designed exclusively for start-ups.


Pre-Incubation Acceleration Programme:  The start-ups that pass the post-“Entrepreneurship Training” jury continue to benefit from training, seminar, consultancy and mentoring services in order to commercialize their projects at this stage and may be entitled to use the R&D fund allocated in order to develop their prototypes. During the course of this process, they continue to receive support from Çekirdek mentors and trainers on first customer meetings, sales processes and investment processes and benefit from special training and consultancies within this scope.

from idea to first product: pre-incubation 1

Fully-Equipped Work Environment

The entrepreneur groups admitted to ITU Çekirdek become entitled to use the Incubation Centres (Open Office) until the day Big Bang takes place. Incubation office is the general name of the physical area that has all the equipment to be used by entrepreneurs while materializing their ideas and projects. Entrepreneur groups may organize both the meetings amongst themselves and the ones with investors, trainers and mentors in ITU Çekirdek Meeting Hall. Çekirdek trainers share their knowledge and experience with ITU Çekirdek entrepreneurs in the ITU Çekirdek Seminar Hall that has a capacity of 40 people.

ITU Çekirdek Entrepreneurship Training

ITU Çekirdek Entrepreneurship Training Programme, which is design specifically for Turkey and ITU Çekirdek after being inspired by the entrepreneurship lessons delivered in Berkeley and Stanford, are offered to the entrepreneurs by academicians of ITU Business Administration Faculty.

The training period, which is planned to take 7 weeks, has a systematics that repeats itself. The training programme, which incorporates all areas needed by entrepreneurs in the process of writing their own success stories and being ready and equipped against all the challenges that may come up at each stage on the path they have taken, is applied by “Business Model Canvas with Lean Start-Up” method.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 3

Requirement-Based Mentoring for Entrepreneurs

It is the voluntary mentoring approach undertaken by experienced people who give success tips to entrepreneurs on how they should proceed and know their capabilities, skills and targets well. 120 one-to-one meetings are held each week on average with 300 volunteers in mentor pool of ITU Çekirdek.

Investor Meetings

ITU Çekirdek Start-Ups-Investor Meetings, which takes place upon invitation of prominent investors of Turkey to ITU Çekirdek Centre, aim to expand their networks apart from increasing the opportunities to receive investment for the projects of ITU Çekirdek start-ups.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 5

Corporate Gatherings

İTÜ Çekirdek organizes sale-oriented Demo Days with various big corporate companies as well as over 40 stakeholder institutions. On these Demo Days, start-ups come together with sector-based companies, finding the opportunity to talk on sales.

Central Position in İstanbul’s Work Life

ITU Çekirdek, which is situated in ITU ARI Teknokent ARI 3 building in the campus of İstanbul Technical University where a strong technical and scientific environment is experienced, is at the core of public transportation network in İstanbul. The fact that Maslak region is the focal point of İstanbul’s business life lends ITU Çekirdek a huge advantage.

All the superstructure and infrastructure facilities needed by entrepreneurs to develop their innovative projects are included in this scientific atmosphere.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 7

ITU Çekirdek Prototyping Laboratory

Basic engineering equipment is presented within the body of ITU Çekirdek Prototyping laboratory in order to support the process where entrepreneur groups put their ideas or projects into practice. New equipment is provided according to entrepreneur requirements for the laboratory area where devices necessary for Research and Development are available in basic engineering areas.

This laboratory was constructed by Elginkan Foundation in memory of “Ekrem Elginkan” in the year when ITU Çekirdek started operating.

Çekirdek R&D Fund

A R&D fund pool has been created, to enable the entrepreneurs admitted to ITU Çekirdek Pre-Incubation to develop their prototypes and progress smoothly in their business development procedures. This fund, which is offered for both experiment and raw material procurement, is provided from Çekirdek Wallet that presents the opportunity to develop prototype.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 9

Special Opportunities for people of İTÜ Çekirdek

İTÜ Çekirdek contracts wide range of institutions in line with the needs of start-ups. Start-ups may make use of packages of such institutions as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, IBM, Radore, Wirecard, Logo, Stripe Atlas, Iyzico, Zeplin, Netmera, Zendesk, Hubspot, Serdoo, and Fit Solutions.


ITU Çekirdek is under the roof of a zone that incorporates R&D companies of ITU ARI Teknokent that have advanced technology as well as in the information flow environment provided by the existence of a strong academic cadre within ITU campus. The fact that ITU Çekirdek entrepreneurs are reflected as institutions/projects/people supported by ITU, enhances its reliability and corporateness. The synergy created by togetherness of entrepreneurs ensures motivation and advantages of clustering make ITU Çekirdek the focal point of investors and funds.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 11

Resting& Entertainment& Thinking Area

This area, which is created to support project development and entrepreneurial spirit and help improve innovative sides of groups, is an area of energy and idea storage that offers entertainment, synergy and creativity facilities for entrepreneurs all together.

Free Technical Infrastructure

Entrepreneurs can only focus on their works without worrying about such costs as electricity, water and internet bills in the beginning of months. The entire infrastructure, with internet and kitchen facilities is presented readily to the entrepreneurs.

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from idea to first product: pre-incubation 13

Press & PR & Communication Counselling

The newspaper and magazine interviews for promotional activities of ITU Çekirdek entrepreneurs in published media as well as their TV programmes are managed by ITU ARI Teknokent team and agencies with professional communication counselling service.