Interview with Dr. Tarık ÖĞÜT, Chairman of MILMAST

MILMAST is an ‘Engineering and Technology Design Company’, manufacturing carbon composite / aluminum Telescopic Mast Systems, and Military Trailers.

The company operates with 75 personnel in a 14,000 sqm facility, optimizing the performance of C4ISR systems, Radar Systems, Optical Surveillance Systems, Fire Control Systems, and Communication Systems with advanced Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) services.

  • As the chairman of MILMAST, we would like to know you a little bit.

I studied mechanical engineering in Germany, my profession, between 1966-1977, as an education and then a master’s and doctorate. I went to Germany as a student with a state scholarship in 1966 and spent 24 years there. I spent half of this time in school and half in the industry. My focus has been on research and development, advanced engineering, and applied physics, both during school and in the industry. I returned to Turkey in 1990 to convey my experiences in these fields, to carry out successful projects, and to take part in R&D activities that have just started in Turkey. Since then, I have done projects on finite element method applications in various sectors, especially in defense and aerospace, and given various training programs on this subject.

  • What would you like to share about the establishment of MILMAST and FİGES?

I founded FİGES as soon as I returned from abroad in 1990. The focus of our company is to design and manufacture products that are not made in Turkey by using numerical mathematical methods and computer technologies in various disciplines of physics. In addition, we provide R&D services by using related software and hardware to companies that want to progress in these goals. These activities are called Computer-Aided Engineering. The basis of this concept lies in the solution of differential equations describing physical phenomena with the help of numerical methods. This is precisely where we focus: making virtual prototypes with mathematical models and developing the product mainly on this virtual model. Furthermore, we aim to use this knowledge and experience to build our products and share it with companies that want to develop their products. These activities are strategically important for Turkey to become more vital by developing products with high added value and an R&D culture.

MILMAST company emerged from the needs of our defense industry, especially ASELSAN. First, we listened to our customer’s needs, learned what kind of product they wanted, and immediately started to work. We did not request any R&D funds from our customers or other sources, and we used our resources to progress rapidly. We manufactured the prototypes and subjected them to various environmental tests according to MIL-810 standards. Our development process continued for approximately two years.

As of today, although we are only a four-year-old company, we have successfully delivered nearly 600 products to our customers. In my opinion, all of our companies should export more or less. The only way to get rid of the current account deficit spiral is through exports. A significant portion of public incentives should be used to support exports. Our export initiative, which first started with South Korea, continues with many countries such as Poland, Romania, and Russia. We aim to make a difference by equipping our products with artificial intelligence features. We target to be the first company in telescopic lifting systems in the international market.

SERHAT Mobile Mortar Detection Radar
SERHAT Mobile Mortar Detection Radar.
  • Could you give information about your customer-oriented solutions?

We do not provide off-the-shelf products to our customers because each project has its unique feature and specification. Therefore, we have to respond to these demands of our customers one by one and in detail. Unlike our competitors, we always ask our customers the geometry of the payload they need to raise. Since the geometry of each payload is different, as the wind loads, it is exposed. Therefore, after receiving the payload geometry from our customer, we make fluid mechanics calculations, calculate the wind loads and the maximum displacements using these loads and share them with our customer. Therefore, science is our “must-have.” In this way, we give our customers the most ‘customized’ product for their needs.

  • What are the 2022 goals of MILMAST?

Our primary target now is ‘Exports.’ Of course, we want to do this without disrupting our domestic sales. There are many potential customers that we want to reach. We wish to acquire these potentials and get to know them. Our primary target is the EU countries, Russia, Asia-Pacific, and Northern America. We currently have contacts and representatives in all four regions and have established new connections in South America. We explain our scientific approach at every opportunity because we are a scientific company – A technology company. We always want to move forward by basing our marketing philosophy and sales focus on this basis. If we proceed on this basis, there is no reason why we should not be first in the world.

Milmast