Obama honours Turkish entrepreneur for bestselling yoghurt
Tuesday, April 08, 2014
WASHINGTON D.C. - A Turkish businessman who started his own yoghurt business in the U.S. nine years ago was honored by President Obama for turning his company into the best-selling yogurt brand in the U.S -Chobani - valued at $5.4 billion in 2013.
Hamdi Ulukaya from Erzincan in eastern Turkey originally came to the U.S. in 1994 to learn English. Born to a family who operated a dairy farm and following the advice of his father, he started a feta cheese company, Euphrates, in upstate New York in 2002. In 2005, he acquired a closed down yogurt factory outside New York on credit and established a new dairy company, Chobani.
A total of eleven entrepreneurs were honored as part of the first meeting of the Presidential Ambassadors for Global Entrepreneurship (PAGE) initiative, a group of successful American businesspeople who have committed to sharing their time, energy, ideas and experience to help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs under the chairmanship of the US Secretary of Commerce.
"I told him (Obama) about the establishment of Chobani. Now, our yoghurts are very popular in US. Obama listened to our story with great interest," said Ulukaya after the ceremony.
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