The Birmingham Post linked up with Turkish Airlines to take five of the region’s businesses to Istanbul to explore new trade avenues.

The airline flew the companies, selected at random from the Birmingham Post Business Awards 2014 shortlist of potential winners, to Turkey for a three-day visit.

Representatives from Bareface Media, David Manners Group, Power Minerals, Ultraseal International and UK Power Reserve, joined Selim Ozturk, general manager of Turkish Airlines Birmingham, along with Stacey Barnfield, editor, Birmingham Post, and Craig Cooksley, chairman, Birmingham Post Growth Fund.

The visit was filmed by Birmingham-based Blue Monday to be shown at the Post’s business awards ceremony which takes place on Wednesday, November 26 at the ICC in Birmingham city centre.

During the visit Stacey Barnfield interviewed Dr Temel Kotil, CEO, Turkish Airlines, to learn more about the airline’s plans for its Birmingham operation.

Dr Kotil revealed his ambition to double the Birmingham to Istanbul service to two daily flights from the summer of 2015.

Cultural highlights of the trip included a visit to Istanbul’s Blue Mosque and tour of the Grand Bazaar and Old City.

The group also visited Turkish Airlines’ multi-million-pound training centre and flight simulators.