İlyas Özsüer was born on April 5, 1925 in Skopje, Macedonia. He completed his primary education in Skopje. He moved to Istanbul in 1938. He completed his secondary and high school education in Sultanahmet Trade Vocational High School, and higher education in the Istanbul High Economy and Trade School.
Starting his business career in the early 1950s, Özsüer laid the foundations of MAYA Group with its initiatives taken in thread trade, textile, soap, pharmaceutical industry, and various other industrial sectors. He contributed greatly in the Turkish industry and economy with his initiatives. He was an active member of the Council of Istanbul Chamber of Industry for 22 years, and realized many “firsts” in business life. He continued his active business life within group companies until 1994.