April 30, 2020

Turkish/Syrian-owned company producing ventilators

“We are developing a ventilator for people's health”.

Syrian and Turkish founders of İkiz Gen Mühendislik (Twin Gene Engineering) are now supporting the battle against COVID-19 by building ventilators. Emrullah Gündüz from Gaziantep in Turkey and Mohammad Wael Zakkour from Aleppo in Syria have previously built incubators for babies and other electronic medical solutions, as well as solar-powered devices.

Last year, the engineers and entrepreneurs received business training through SPARK’s EBDA programme, financed by the Dutch Nationale Postcode Loterij. They also took part in the business plan competition, where they won €5k in startup capital.

Ventilator prototype designs by İkiz Gen Mühendislik © 2020, Mohammed Wael Zakkour
İkiz Gen Mühendislik is now developing an electronic motherboard and embedded system for their ventilator © 2019, SPARK

“The COVID-19 crisis has affected us, just like the rest of the world”, says Zakkour. “We are developing a ventilator for people’s health”. Zakkour explains that the first prototype will be available within 15 days, and if it passes the relevant tests, the company can begin mass production within 40 days. Zakkour says that the company can sell the finished product for cheaper than it usually costs, at around $6,000 USD. The average cost for a ventilator is approximately $20,000. 

However, the company, which employs around 15 people including engineering students, is facing financial problems. “The materials required for the tests are approximately $10,000 USD”, says Zakkour. “In the research and development process, we covered our personnel and office expenses. But now our search for finance continues. We will work to make tests when we have financial support”.