Ali Güreli, graduated from the Faculty of Business Administration as METU (Middle East Technical University). Under Güreli's leadership, Contemporary Istanbul has become one of Istanbul's most prestigious international art events. Between 2001 and 2005, before "Contemporary Istanbul", Ali Güreli founded the first contemporary art fair in Turkey; Art Istanbul. A founding partner of Istanbul Convention and Exhibition Centre (ICEC), Güreli was its Vice-Chairman between 1993 - 2002 and played a key role in its board of management. Between 1989 - 2002, he was the Board member of The Marmara Hotels Group. Presently Chairman of the Board of The Sofa Hotels & Resorts, Güreli is also the founder and Chairman of IKON Events Inc., a pioneer company specialized in the organization of events and conventions (since its inception in 1991). Ali Güreli has a great passion for the idea that Istanbul can be a cultural and intellectual hub where spheres of influence embrace the Middle East and Europe. His entrepreneurial energy and enthusiasm spreads across his different projects, brings him to encounter new opportunities and new development possibilities.