For U.S. companies with major investments in Turkey the turbulence is unsettling. Among those at risk are Microsoft, Intel and Coca-Cola that have their regional headquarters there and are exposed to domestic market turmoil.
Ford has spent $1.6 billion building factories in Turkey, making the country its export hub for Europe. The company has a partnership with Turkish holding company KOC Holding AS. With over 10,600 employees, Ford is the biggest employer in the Turkish automotive industry.
GE also is heavily entrenched in Turkey. In 2012, GE, announced a three-year $900 million investment program that supplies turbines for wind farms, builds locomotives and manufacturers engine blades. Today, the company supplies 26 percent of Turkey's electricity. Interviewed on an annual trade mission to the U.S. in November, Canan Ozsoy, CEO of GE in Turkey, would only say that it has been an "interesting" year to pitch Turkey as a trade destination.
Other western companies have also poured hundreds of millions of dollars into the country including Procter & Gamble and PepsiCo.
For now, Turkey's currency crisis is deterring foreign investors but companies with important investments in the country remain committed to the nation's long-term prospects. Some — like PepsiCo and GE — are continuing their expansion plans. For example, PepsiCo is building a sixth factory for $120 million and GE Health announced it would be part of a group financing a $668 million health campus in Izmir, according to the Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Turkey.
Some private investors and bargain hunters that can stomach volatility are launching funds in Turkey. For example, Abraaj Group, a $9.5 billion private equity firm that invests in some of the world's most volatile markets, created a $526 million Turkey Fund that is betting on the long-term growth of the Turkish economy.