Exclusive: Dolu’s evolution from small company to global supplier

Published on: 6th October 2023

Publisher John Baulch visited Istanbul to see Dolu’s impressive purpose-built factory and warehouse facility, and to understand the advantages for UK and European retailers in dealing with a toy manufacturer a little closer to home.

The Dolu company was originally set up in 1975 by Goksel and Gokhan’s father, Osman Dolu. Its first product was actually a mosquito swatter, followed by a range of stationery items, before Osman decided to branch out into toys at the start of the 1980s. The first toy range produced by the company consisted of a selection of small trucks, some examples of which are on display in the new building, along with many other milestone products from the past four decades. And if you look closely enough, you can even see Goksel and Gokhan pictured on the packaging of some of those early lines.

When Goksel and Gokhan first joined their father’s company, the majority of Dolu’s customers were domestic. The brothers felt that it would be a good move for the company’s growth and development to look towards the export market, and the rest, as they say is history. Dolu is now the largest toy supplier in Turkey, exporting to a grand total of 85 countries.

The company moved into a brand new, purpose-built facility in 2021. Construction actually started on the impressive complex back in 2017, and the entire thing was built from scratch in under four years (including the Covid period). At a whopping 62,000 sq m, it is five times larger than the company’s previous factory, and there is a plan in place to increase its capacity each year moving forward. This will give Dolu the ability to increase both the size and scope of its range, as well as reach more markets and establish relationships with even more retail partners across the globe.

On John’s visit, he spoke to Goksel as well as Steve Richardson from SJR Associates. Dolu’s sales representative in the UK and Ireland.

The feature goes into detail about its achievements, goals and extensive product range. To read more, click here.


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