Growing Crops, Growing the Community: Sukanto Tanoto Empowers Locals with Community Programmes

Sukanto Tanoto, the 68 year old entrepreneur, is self-assured and masterful in his ways. It is a manner he has had to have; 50 years in the business dictated so. Starting out as a 17 year-old when he first took over his father’s spare parts business, Sukanto Tanoto’s grit, decisiveness, and confidence have been integral to his success. Today Sukanto Tanoto is chairman of the global resources giant that is RGE, a company that he founded, which manages various other resource-based businesses such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas. Very much a self-made man, the business veteran has built in 50 years an awe-inspiring empire, a name, and a legacy for the Tanoto family.

More than a businessman: Sukanto Tanoto, the man with a heart

Growing Crops, Growing the Community: Sukanto Tanoto empowers locals with Community Programmes

Like most people, Sukanto Tanoto is very much a product of his circumstances. Moulded by the years of success, failures, and hurdles, he had to be adapatable, yet firm in his own beliefs. Belying the magisterial demeanour that Sukanto Tanoto exudes, is a genteelness and warmth often disassociated; therein lies the core of his person and work. He has conducted the entire spectrum of businesses according to his principle of the 5Cs, to create good for the Community, Country, Climate, Customers, and Company. Sukanto Tanoto is unyielding in his belief that it is possible, and right, for companies to profit by putting the communities first. Most recently, APRIL was again lauded for its community development programmes.

APRIL keeps up the good work

For the longest time, 32 year-old Indra Irawan was a small-time farmer who depended upon seven hectares of land for his palm oil business. With palm oil prices fluctuating at an increasingly regular pace, the father-of-two was increasingly worried about his income flow. After attending the Integrated Farming System programme organised by Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL however, things have undoubted taken a turn for the better. The programme taught Indra and his friends on the most cost, and waste-efficient methods of agriculture and horticulture.

As a result of specialised training and support provided by PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary, Indra is consistently bringing home a monthly salary of Rp 4 to 5 million – almost double what he used to make as an employee at Futong Port. Sukanto Tanoto may never meet many of people he has helped, but for people like Indra and many others, they will surely remain very grateful for the gentle resource giant that is Mr. Tanoto.

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Fighting Fire with Film: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Uses Innovative Approach to Cultivating a Fire Free Community

Sukanto Tanoto is one of Indonesia’s most famous and well-regarded businessmen. The Founder and Chairman of RGE, the global resource-manufacturing giant that manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas, his companies collectively employ 60,000 people and own assets worth over US $18 billion. Growing from a small business by the busy streets of Medan to the global behemoth operating in Indonesia, China, Spain, Canada and Singapore, Sukanto Tanoto’s story is one of going from rags to riches.

Sukanto Tanoto’s 5Cs Philosophy Does Good

Fighting Fire with Film: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Uses Innovative Approach to Cultivating a Fire Free Community

His success is not the only thing Sukanto Tanoto is known for, however. Sukanto Tanoto is well-known for his corporate philosophy of the 5Cs, to create good for the Community, Country, Climate, Customer, and Company in whatever he does. It is a philosophy focusing on the creation of shared value, and is one his companies have imbibed. Today, his companies are known for their insistence on doing good for those around them. Palm Oil giant Asian Agri, for example, is known for its strong support of government initiatives. Pulp and Paper behemoth APRIL, on other hand, is well-regarded for its community-based initiatives.

APRIL Uses an Innovative Approach to Promote Fire Prevention

Most recently PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesia subsidiary, kept up this tradition when it carried out one of its community outreach programmes to inculcate in villagers the importance of fire safety and prevention. Notwithstanding the immense threats of health hazards and economic loss, using fire to clear land is an unsustainable practice that APRIL has consistently tried to stop. Through programmes such as the Fire Free Village Programme and the Fire Free Alliance, APRIL has committed itself to preventing and stopping forest and land fires.

To further promote the idea of only using sustainable production methods, APRIL recently engaged local villagers and farmers of Tumang Village, Siak through the movies. The innovative idea, which successfully captured the attention of both the young and elderly, managed to impress upon locals the many drawbacks of using fire as a production method. It seems to have worked, too. Head of Tumang village, Muhammad Tahir, described how his villagers are now much more alert and aware of the need to keep the lands free from fire.

The use of innovative methods such as films to inculcate the importance of fire protection and prevention is part of APRIL’s commitment to sustainability and shared value creation. Sailal Arimi, APRIL’s Fire Free Village Programme Manager, said that such methods of fire prevention are an important avenue for APRIL, given the ease of understanding that films provide and the high level of enthusiasm they manage to create.

A Fresh Start: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL helps Illegal Logger Go Straight

Sukanto Tanoto is an entrepreneur who came good despite the odds. Taking over his family’s spare parts business as a seventeen year-old, he was thrown into deep end. Yet the tenacious Sukanto Tanoto succeeded, cutting his business teeth in Medan, Indonesia and eventually starting the first of his many companies. Today, Sukanto Tanoto is chairman of RGE, a natural resource giant that manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas. With his companies collectively employing 60,000 people and owning assets worth 18 billion dollars, Sukanto Tanoto has indubitably made a name for himself.

Doing good and doing well

More impressively,Sukanto Tanoto is also an entrepreneur with a heart. Throughout 50 years of business, he has advocated the creation of shared value for the Community, Country, Climate, Customers, and Company – a philosophy that has come to be known as the 5Cs. It is something he has always insisted upon, and all of Sukanto Tanoto’s companies have similarly followed suit. There exist many inspiring stories of his companies existing with the community in a symbiotic relationship. One such example is that of APRIL and former illegal logger Tengku Effendi.

A Fresh Start: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL helps Illegal Logger Go Straight

Sukanto Tanoto helps illegal logger come good

47 year-old Tengku Effendi, used to be an illegal logger. Under the Community Development (CD) Programme ran by PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary, Tengku finally went straight. Joining the programme in 2006, today the father of three has truly become a role model for all as an award-winning entrepreneur.

Under the CD programme, Tengku received from Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL, in terms of business and management training. APRIL didn’t just stop there, and even helped Tengku secure the loans required for his business. With a supportive framework in place, Tengku’s new transportation business took off, and has never looked back since. Today, Tengku’s business is thriving, and one of their biggest customer is APRIL, for whom Tengku transports fertilisers. In 2014, his company won a PT RAPP award for implementing workplace health and safety principles.

Country Roads, Take Me Home: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Repairs Road for Local Community

Sukanto Tanoto is the founder and chairman of RGE, a resource-based company started in Indonesia that has since gone global. Providing management services to companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas, Sukanto Tanoto’s companies collectively employ 60,000 people and own assets of over USD$18 billion. It is a meteoric rise to success for the billionaire entrepreneur; he was forced to take over his family business at the tender age of seventeen.

5Cs, the Tanoto Way

Country Roads, Take Me Home: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Repairs Road for Local Community

His success, while staggering, is made even more impressive by its foundation in a corporate philosophy known as the 5Cs. Aiming to create good for the Community, Country, Climate, Customer, and Company in everything they do, it aims to create shared value for everyone. The 5Cs are testament to Sukanto Tanoto’s foresight and vision; many of his companies are now known for both their success and responsible practices.

APRIL Helps the Community

APRIL, in particular, has readily answered Sukanto Tanoto’s call. The pulp and paper giant has set in place a host of initiatives under their Community Development (CD) programme, run by its Indonesian subsidiary PT RAPP. As a result of these programmes, communities around the area of PT RAPP’s operations who benefit have had a traditionally positive relationship with RAPP.

Most recently, APRIL helped rebuild a road in Sentajo Raya sub-district of Kuansing, Riau, Indonesia. Mobilising two units of heavy equipment from RAPP, an excavator and motor grader were used rebuild the road that had fallen into disrepair. Village head Koto Tuo, Sumanhijar, was especially thankful, for the poor conditions of the road had previously made the area difficult to access. A spokesperson for the company said that the company remained supportive of communities around it, and that helping them was only in accordance of their 5Cs principle.

APRIL Impresses: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Praised by Delegation from National Resilience Institute

Sukanto Tanoto is one of Indonesia’s more famous businessmen. The 68 year-old is chairman and founder of RGE, a global resource giant that manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas. With over 60,000 employees and 18 billion dollars in assets owned collectively, Sukanto Tanoto’s resource empire is one that often draws looks of amazement – and rightly so; his rise to the top of the game, from a seventeen year-old taking over a family business, to the success he is today, is inspiring in itself.

Philanthropy as a passion

While the billionaire entrepreneur’s success is widely-acclaimed, he has kept his feet firmly planted on the ground throughout. It was in part a result of his involvements in philanthropy, a passion nurtured over the years. Through Tanoto Foundation, which he started with his wife Tinah Bingei Tanoto, Sukanto Tanoto has managed to help the lives of many through his passion. The resource king has also transferred the same sense of duty to the community into his businesses. Sukanto Tanoto is a firm believer of the 5Cs, to create good for the Community, Country, Climate, Customer, and Company. It is a philosophy espousing the creation of shared value, and is one that all his companies have adopted.

APRIL praised for good work done

This same philosophy was recently praised, when Maj. Gen. Nunu Nugraha led a team from the National Resilience Institute to visit APRIL’s operations. During the visit to PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary, Maj. Gen. Nugraha and his team learned about the advanced paper making processes employed by the company. The team also learned about APRIL’s many community-centred programmes, signs of APRIL’s commitment to the community around it. In particular the visitors, hosted by RAPP President Director Rudi Fajar, were introduced to the Fire Free Village Programme (FFVP). The crown jewel of APRIL’s fire-prevention and protection arsenal, the hugely successful programme will see 18 participants this year, up from nine.

APRIL Impresses: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL Praised by Delegation from National Resilience Institute

APRIL’s highly successful Fire Free Village Programme

Maj. Gen. Nugraha and his team were noticeably impressed by the entire visit. The general was quick to comment, and said, “The paper we use, PaperOne, is of good quality and doesn’t damage easily. We are also amazed by the company’s programmes for the people and the surrounding region.”

Business with a Heart: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL focuses on Community Development

Sukanto Tanoto is the chairman and founder of RGE, one of Indonesia’s most successful companies. It manages other leading lights such as APRIL and Pacific Oil and Gas, and has operations across the globe. Needless to say, RGE is one of global industry’s largest players. Its companies collectively employ over 60,000 people and own assets exceeding 18 billion dollars. It is an empire he painstakingly built over 50 years in business, starting out as a 17 year-old who took over his father’s spare parts supply business. Never in his wildest dreams would he have envisioned the amount of success he would go on to have.

A commitment to helping others

According to the billionaire entrepreneur, his success would have been impossible without his forward-looking business philosophy. Sukanto  Tanoto firmly believes in creating shared value. It is something he calls the 5Cs: doing good for the Community, Country, Climate,  Customer, and Company. It is a nod to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) even before CSR became fashionable, testament to Sukanto Tanoto’s vision.

Business with a Heart: Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL focuses on Community Development

APRIL commits to community development

Even today, his companies continue to portray the values he espouses. Pulp and paper giant APRIL is well-known in Indonesia for its Community Development programmes. Through the programme, the company has built homes, kick started entrepreneurial journeys, and even donated blood. Sukanto Tanoto’s philosophy has paid off many times over; both the communities around and the company have benefitted greatly through mutual cooperation and concession. Unsurprisingly, APRIL is well-loved by many locals in the areas they operate in.

Most recently, APRIL, through its Indonesian subsidiary PT RAPP, carried out one of its many Community Development Programmes for the less economically-developed communities in the region. A mass circumcision programme, held in Kuntu Darussalam Village of the Kampar regency, was attended by dozens of children. Entirely supported by APRIL, the programme was one initiative to help alleviate the economic problems many in the village faced.

The help is something greatly appreciated. Head of Kuntu Darussalam Village, Maldanis, said, “We are grateful to RAPP for conducting Mass Circumcision program in this village. We hope other companies also imitate what is done by RAPP because the benefits are very much.”

 

Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL group supports local artists in creating environmental awareness

As one of the world’s leading paper and pulp manufacturers, APRIL constantly strives to realize the vision of its founder, Mr. Sukanto Tanoto.

Recently, APRIL had the pleasure of supporting artists in Indonesia whose creative talent has produced a series of beautiful paintings as part of the Caring for Climate Doodle Competition. Drawing on talent from across the country, this competition reflects Mr. Tanoto’s commitment to climate and environmental sustainability.

Artists express the ethos of Sukanto Tanoto’s four Cs

RGE’s Founder Sukanto Tanoto is well-known for his 4Cs philosophy, which places an emphasis on country, climate, community and company in the running of all his businesses.

The Caring for Climate competition gave ordinary Indonesians with special artistic talents the opportunity to express themselves on the topic of climate and sustainability – with beautiful results. Colorful canvases depicting smiling faces, green mountains, and crystal-clear water are just some of the images that Indonesian artists produced under this inspiration.

APRIL’s commitment extends to all areas of community life

The APRIL group and its subsidiary, RAPP, are deeply committed to supporting community projects in Indonesia, in keeping with Mr. Tanoto’s vision. The Caring for Climate competition saw this commitment extended beyond individual communities, as the whole of Indonesia had an opportunity to showcase its creative talent.

RAPP’s Mill Operational Director, Ali Shabri, attended the competition and had the following to say:

“This is a great event to introduce to people that our company operates in an environmentally-friendly way. Our paper is made from renewable resources that we grow responsibly and in accordance with our business philosophy of being Good for Climate.”

To stay up-to-date with the RGE group’s latest climate initiatives, we invite you to follow Mr. Sukanto Tanoto via social media on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, About.me or LinkedIn.

A Promise is a Promise: Under Sukanto Tanoto, PT RAPP Honours its Word

Sukanto Tanoto is a man of his word, who understands the power and significance of a promise. The way he sees it, trust is a trait that no amount of money can buy; it is –as clichéd as it sounds – earned. It is for this reason the chairman of RGE –which manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas – always strives to honour his word.

A heart for the community, an attitude to match

A Promise is a Promise: Under Sukanto Tanoto, PT RAPP Honours its Word

It is an attitude that Sukanto Tanoto brings across through all his dealings, and a mindset that he has sought to instil within all his businesses. Together with his philosophy of the 4Cs –creating Good for the Community, Country, Climate, and Company –it makes for a winning combination; the billionaire entrepreneur has built an empire with over USD 18 billion dollars worth of assets, and a 60,000 strong workforce. It is little surprise then, that Sukanto Tanoto’s companies are often known for their trustworthiness, commitment, and community-centric initiatives. Recently, these same values were on show as PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary, was evaluated and found to have kept its promises to the local communities in the Meranti Islands.

Doing good for Meranti

Under the Hutan Tanaman Industri (HTI) programme, companies operating in the Meranti Islands are tasked with being a force for good – to improve the local community through the economy and CSR initiatives. One major part of their task is to ensure part of the plantations they manage is reserved for the growing of crops important to the local community, a promise to ensure the community would not be neglected.

At a recent evaluation by the Parliament of the Meranti Islands, Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL was the only operator to have kept its promise. While PT RAPP had already fulfilled their commitments in 10 villages, it was the only major operator to do so. With over 1,100 hectares of land already used for the plantation of crops required by the community, and IDR 25 billion in grants disbursed out to residents, APRIL is definitely taking its commitment seriously. Sukanto Tanoto simply wouldn’t have it any other way.

Good News Spreads Like Wildfire: Under Sukanto Tanoto, APRIL praised for Fire-Free Village Programme

The pulp and paper industry has, in recent history, been subject to intense scrutiny – with the problem of haze and environmental protection having become regional and even international talking points. Managing and reducing forest fires, identified as the key to solving these issues, has naturally become a matter of increasing priority of communities, countries, and companies. It is comforting, therefore, to know that progress has been made in this respect; Sukanto Tanoto-led APRIL was recently praised for its efforts, notably the Fire-Free Village Programme (FFVP).

FFVP not a one-off

 Good News Spreads Like Wildfire: Under Sukanto Tanoto, APRIL praised for Fire-Free Village Programme

The FFVP has almost become the crown jewel of APRIL’s initiatives in tackling the much-dreaded forest fires. While the pulp-and-paper giant, owned by businessman Sukanto Tanoto, has had an array of initiatives promoting more sustainable and responsible practices –one only needs think of the Restorasi Ekosistem Riau and the Fire-Free Alliance – the FFVP has definitely received a huge share of the limelight, deservedly so. A multi-stakeholder initiative that focuses on fire prevention and suppression, the project was recently given the stamp of approval by head of National Agency for Disaster Management, Willem Rampangilei. Rampangilei was on hand to launch FFVP 2017, at Pelawalan Airstrip, Riau.

FFVP receives plaudits, support, and faith.

The FFVP is merely one of many examples highlighting Sukanto Tanoto’s community-centric approach to business and, indeed, life. The businessman and philanthropist is chairman of Singapore-based RGE, which itself manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas, and co-founded the Tanoto Foundation with his wife Tinah Bingei Tanoto. At the heart of all his ventures and companies however, is the 4Cs philosophy: creating good for the Community, Country, Climate, and Company. This same philosophy, whilst providing the rock on which his empire would stand, has allowed the communities around his companies to benefit greatly.

The importance of including the community and stakeholders within a company’s plans was also highlighted during the launch. Fire prevention, Rampangilei reminded, requires strong commitment and awareness from various parties. Rampangilei also mentioned that he was sure the FFVP could contribute to the suppression and land and forest fires, and hoped to see the programme further expanded to other parts of Indonesia. Sukanto Tanoto would be proud.

Growing the Tree of Success Together: Under Sukanto Tanoto’s Leadership, APRIL Fosters Local Entrepreneurship Together.

Much has been made of Indonesia’s pulp and paper industry; it is an industry that has faced many ups and downs within and outside of the country, with challenges inherent to the industry well-reported. Much less mentioned has been the good that big players in the industry like APRIL – managed by RGE and founded by businessman Sukanto Tanoto – have managed to create for the community, by providing a platform and structure for economic development and lifting many out of poverty.

APRIL helps create an ecosystem for growth

Recent data released by the government showed that the pulp and paper industry contributed to 6.7 percent of Indonesia’s manufacturing gross domestic product in 2016, directly creating 260 thousand jobs and contributing to the creation of 840 thousand more jobs indirectly. These are staggering figures, and are the kinds of statistics that continue to validate RGE chairman Sukanto Tanoto’s 4Cs philosophy –creating good for the community, country, climate, and the company together. Likewise, companies managed by Mr Tanoto’s holdings company RGE, like pulp and paper giant APRIL, have sought to ensure their presence remains beneficial for everyone involved.

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Benefitting everyone, from the ground up

Government statistics do not tell the whole story either. On the ground, many Indonesians have felt a similarly positive influence from the continued presence of companies like APRIL. Kerinci resident, Sulaiman, recounts his story of how companies like APRIL, founded by Sukanto Tanoto, have allowed residents to move away from unstable working conditions, and helped Kerinci flourish.

“One of my staff members used to work odd times, helping his father, who is a fisherman and they barely earned Rp 1 million per month. Working here, they can earn more, and some can even earn up to Rp 4 million per month,” said the 38 year old businessman.

According to APRIL’s community development manager, Sundari Berlian, the company has registered 190 partners who work directly in partnership with APRIL. Furthermore, APRIL has already helped to create 90 thousand employment opportunities –a situation that businessmen like Sulaiman hope can continue. With Sukanto Tanoto’s philosophy firmly guiding the actions of all his companies, one can be sure that APRIL will continue to do good for everyone it works with, wherever it is.