Dilek Topkara

dilekerei, Germany

Dilek is the founder of dilekerei, a bespoke cake shop and café in the heart of Germany's capital. Since its beginnings, it has been known for its cakes and other delicate pastries. We began by producing wedding cakes and expanded into a café space. Over the past few years, Dilekerei has increasingly spoken to a unique and yet growing group of diverse European creatives in both its products and space. It remains a family-run business that has grown organically through the support of her customers. Dilekerei does more than satiate the body, something deeper. Above all, she runs this business as a dialogue, an act of communication through her pastries. The various elements of her business work together to build bridges, whether through artistic design or taste, and thereby a community. Her aim is not to grow bigger and turn into a chain, but rather to strengthen her small business, investing into her customers as they invest in her. This is necessary to maintain high quality hand-crafted products. She has worked in multiple cities in the UK, as well as New York City and Berlin and was awarded numerous scholarships from the European Commission. She was one of the first attendees of the Erasmus For Young Entrepreneurs Program back in 2009 and did her exchange also in the UK, where she gained invaluable first hand experiences. She is a convinced and passionate supporter of the program and its great impact on one's professional life and therefore she became a host entrepreneur in 2017 with four NE's exchanges so far.