South of Ankara in the central Anatolia region of Turkey, Konya is a major city on the edge of the Central Anatolian Plateau. The capital of the province of the same name, Konya is an industrialized and economically developed city with a population of over 2.1 million. This is where you can watch the trancelike "sema" whirling dervish ceremonies that originated in Turkey, which is a part of the Islamic sect of Sufism worship. It's a pilgrimage destination for Sufis who focus on the tomb of the founder of the Mevlana order, Jelaleddin Rumi. The city sits in the heart of the province on the Konya Plain and is one of the largest cities in the country. Lowlands and plateaus covering rich steppes with the south predominantly surrounded by the Taurus Mountains characterize its landscape and the largest solar farm in the whole of Turkey is only 20 miles west of the city. Coworking venues appearing on the streets are catering to its plethora of tech savvy souls, as it's amongst the top 10 cities in relation to high school graduates.
Home to more than 100,000 college students with the Selcuk University having the largest number of students of any public university in Turkey, Konya is where you will find a number of industrial parks and industrial conglomerates such as Kombassan Holding. Its exports reach over 130 countries and the city's economy is based on manufacturing components for the automotive industry, agricultural tools, machinery manufacturing and the list goes on to include processed foods, textiles and the leather industry.
Despite Turkey's capital of Istanbul being the global enclave for entrepreneurship, Konya has its own dynamic startup hub happening overflowing with coworking spaces, accelerators, angel investors, venture capital firms and dynamic tech savvy communities. The city offers an affordable cost of living with low tax rates when compared to its neighboring countries. The country's laws treat international investors as "locals" where rights and liabilities are concerned, which is creating a great incentive for startups.
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