Sukanto Tanoto at the Wharton-SMU Dialogue

Wharton SMU dialogue supported by Tanoto Foundation

More than 100 guests comprising alumni of Wharton School and Singapore Management University, academics and industry experts participated in the Wharton-SMU dialogue on 5 March 2018. Featuring a panel discussion on the topic The New World Order: Implications for Asia and Global Trade, the event was also an opportunity to reinforce the close relationship shared among the three partners. The dialogue was telecast on Channel NewsAsia.

The Wharton-Tanoto Initiative

In 2013, Tanoto Foundation established the Wharton-Tanoto Initiative which aims to improve the quality of business education and research on ASEAN with a strong focus on Indonesia through research grants to Wharton faculties. Every year, the Global Faculty Development Program under the Wharton Tanoto Initiative brings selected faculty staff from Indonesian universities to Wharton for mentoring and training on how to get their research published in top tier international journals. The Foundation also provides funding for Wharton faculty staff to travel to ASEAN with a focus on Indonesia to gain in depth first hand exposure to the region.

Sukanto Tanoto is a Member of the Board of Overseers and of the Board for Asia Members in the Wharton School. His three children, Imelda Tanoto, Belinda Tanoto and Anderson Tanoto are all Wharton alumni and have recently been included in this school’s “40 Under 40” list. Anderson sits on the Wharton Executive Board of Asia.

Tanoto Scholarship at SMU

To date, the Tanoto Foundation scholarship at SMU has benefitted a total of 30 students.  The bond-free scholarship covers full tuition fees and provides an allowance for all four years of university education. SMU’s Tanoto scholars collaborate with their counterparts from other institutions in an annual student-led community service project called Project Sukacita. The project allows scholars to volunteer for activities that help raise the standard and quality of life for residents in Kerinci, Riau, Indonesia through several public health awareness and clean-up campaigns.

Advertisements

Repaying the faith: Sukanto Tanoto’s Scholars Break fast with Orphans

Sukanto Tanoto, is one of Indonesia’s most successful businessmen. Beginning his entrepreneurial journey at the tender age of 17, he has spent the past 50 years building an empire for himself. Today, Sukanto Tanoto sits as chairman of RGE, which manages the biggest names in the natural resource industry such as APRIL, Sateri, and Pacific Oil and Gas. With his companies collectively employing 60,000 workers and having assets worth US 18 billion dollars, Sukanto Tanoto is a bona fide success story.

Sukanto Tanoto, steadfast in his belief

Repaying the faith: Sukanto Tanoto’s Scholars Break fast with Orphans

Most impressively, Sukanto Tanoto has done all that while adhering to the principle of creating shared value for the Community, Country, Climate, Customers, and Company. It is known as the 5Cs principle, and has served as the compass on which all of his companies have operated on. Throughout 50 years of business, Sukanto Tanoto’s belief in the 5Cs has never wavered, and has helped him build up a reputation for being one of the most respectable names in business.

Giving Back, Giving More

Following the tradition of doing good for the community, alumnus of the Tanoto Foundation Scholarship Programme recently broke fast with the orphans from Pondok Tahfidz Al Quran. The event, which received a strong turnout, was symbolic of the close bonds formed between the scholars through the Tanoto Foundation, which was founded by Sukanto Tanoto and his wife, Tinah Bingei Tanoto. More than that, it was a clear expression of the values inculcated within all the scholars. The event was only a continuation of the alumnus’ tradition for giving back – they have for a long time been active in lending their efforts, time, and money towards social causes.

“This activity is very important because after graduating from college and work, our friendship should not be interrupted, when this Ramadan we use to meet again,” said chairman of the alumnus committee, Ridho Famajra, who is now an employee of PT RAPP’s, Sukanto Tanoto-owned APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary. Also present were Head of HR for PT RAPP Fibre, Fahrizal Tampubolon, Head of HR for PT RAPP Mill, Willim, Head of Talent Management for PT RAPP Bumantara Gani and the representative for Tanoto Foundation Riau, Asri

The Books We Read as Children: Sukanto Tanoto Encourages Education Through Tanoto Education

Sukanto Tanoto is a firm believer in education. The self-proclaimed lifelong leaner is mostly known as the founder and chairman of RGE, which manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri and Pacific Oil and Gas. Less know about his difficult beginnings; he was forced to give up his education when he was seventeen, to take over his family’s business. It remains a big regret of the billionaire entrepreneur, whose companies collectively employ 60,000 people and own assets worth US$18 billion.

Unfulfilled dreams turn into motivation

His inability to complete his education shaped his passion for philanthropy, and he has been actively within it. Through Tanoto Foundation, which he founded with his wife Tinah Bingei Tanoto, he sought to educate, empower, and enhance the quality of lives of the unfortunate. Sukanto Tanoto knows that education has and always will be a driver of change, and is fully behind any intiative to promote it. A good education is important, but often out of reach for the poor. Often, children suffer the same fate Sukanto Tanoto experienced, in having an education cut short. It is an experience he is determined to prevent anyone else from suffering.

Tanoto Foundation makes it easier to read

To this end, Tanoto Foundation most recently conducted reading programes from their Pelita Pustaka initiative for the children of SDN 013 Simpang Sigaruntung. The event was organised in conjunction with PT RAPP, APRIL’s Indonesian subsidiary. The programme aimed to introduce reading as a passion to children early, in the hope that they may develop the passion for reading early. This time round, thousands of books were distributed to schools in the Inuman-Cerenti sub-district.

The Books We Read as Children: Sukanto Tanoto Encourages Education Through Tanoto Education

Such activities according to Estate Manager for PT RAPP, Jordan Valioano, should hopefully motivate children to develop an interest in reading. Even in the digital age, he stressed, reading should and must be campaigned for. He further added, saying, “Tanoto Foundation and RAPP will continue to support this activity for the advancement of education in the region.”

The aid of organisations like Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL and Tanoto Foundation remain all the more important. In a world where companies are allowed to become bigger and bigger, they retain their social license to operate only by  fulfilling their duty to the communities they operate in. It is therefore heartening to see businessmen like Sukanto Tanoto who still believe in doing the right thing. The 68 year old strongly believes in doing good for the Community, Country, Climate, Customer, and Company, something he calls the 5Cs. Thankfully, it is something he insists all his companies do to.

Securing the Future, One Book at a Time: Under Sukanto Tanoto, Tanoto Foundation Sparks Interest in Reading

Sukanto Tanoto is undoubtedly one of the success stories of our time. The 68 year old, dubbed the resource king of Asia, built an empire worth over 15 billion dollars in assets in 50 years – his personal wealth alone is estimated to be about 2 billion dollars. He is the current chairman of RGE, which manages companies such as APRIL, Sateri, Pacific Oil and Gas – all of which he founded. That he achieved all of this is impressive in itself. That he started everything as a seventeen year old without a completing his education, is reminiscent of a classic rags-to-riches, fairytale story come true.

Sukanto Tanoto Turns Regret into Motivation

 

Securing the Future, One Book at a Time: Under Sukanto Tanoto, Tanoto Foundation Sparks Interest in Reading

For all his success, Sukanto Tanoto has often mentioned that his interrupted education remains one of his few regrets. While some would suggest all’s well that ends well –he is a billionaire after all – the entrepreneur extraordinaire continues to be determined to ensure no one else suffers the same fate again. To this end Tanoto Foundation, the philanthropic arm of his empire he set up with his wife Tinah Bingei Tanoto, has worked tirelessly to improve education and literacy standards globally. One way in which it has been doing so, has been through its Pelita Puska Programme, which aims to foster an interest in reading amongst Indonesian Children.

Tanoto Foundation: A Strong Track Record

The Pelita Puska Programme currently targets schools in rural areas, where information is often limited and facilities are poor. Beyond building and renovating the libraries in these schools, Tanoto Foundation also contributes materials to these libraries, and offers training to teachers who could go on to also become librarians. By doing so, Tanoto Foundation seeks to facilitate the maintenance and accessibility of reading materials, which would go a long way in increasing interest in reading and improving literacy rates. As of 2016, Tanoto Foundation has built and renovated libraries in 186 schools, and donated over 32,000 books, and trained over 1800 teachers. The fight might not be won tomorrow, but Sukanto Tanoto’s vision is slowly, but surely becoming reality.

 

Making Learning Fun Again: Under Sukanto Tanoto’s Philosophy, APRIL Opens New Eco Green Park for Sekolah Global Andalan PT RAPP Estate Logas

Education has come a long way since the days of poring over books, stuffy classrooms, and learning by rote. Learning, today, is an interactive process geared towards making the transfer of information between teacher and student much more efficient. A good foundation in skills important for the future – such as reading, writing, and a sense of responsibility – is a key goal of all schools, and Sekolah Global Andalan PT RAPP Estate Logas came one step close to that goal recently, as Sukanto Tanoto’s APRIL helped opened a new eco green park right within the school compound.

Sukanto Tanoto’s Motivation for Learning

APRIL, a global player in the pulp and paper industry, was founded by Sukanto Tanoto. The businessman, who turns 68 this year, has built an empire for the ages – he is currently chairman of RGE , which manages several industry giants such as APRIL, Sateri, Pacific Oil and Gas. An out-and-out self-made man, he grafted and toiled for his success, made all the more difficult by his incomplete education. While an inspiration in itself, his experience isn’t one he’d like others to go through. The dedicated philanthropist, who founded the Tanoto Foundation with his wife, Tinah Bingei Tanoto, has worked tirelessly to ensure the less-privileged will still have an equal opportunity at life; his foundation seeks to empower, and enhance the lives of others, through education.

Making Learning Fun Again: Under Sukanto Tanoto’s Philosophy, APRIL Opens New Eco Green Park for Sekolah Global Andalan PT RAPP Estate Logas

Sukanto Tanoto Makes Loving Nature Fun

The recently opened Eco Green park is a learning space co-located with a forest and features a host of learning resources designed to foster a curiosity about the fascinating world of forestry. Comprising of a green house, a compost production house, and learning huts, the facility will also house a “bank sampah”, or trash bank. The trash bank will allow the more creatively-gifted students to showcase their handicrafts made from trash. With an eco-minded slant, the park will hopefully engender a sense of responsibility towards nature.

Mr Bey Soo Khiang, Vice Chairman of RGE, was on hand to witness the opening of the park. Speaking at the ceremony, he remarked that the initiative was a testament to Sukanto Tanoto’s commitment to the 4Cs philosophy – creating good for the Community, Country, Climate, and Company.

Teacher Training Scholarships Elevate Indonesian Education for Everyone

The Tanoto Foundation works to support a wide range of educational efforts throughout Indonesia and beyond. In addition to its academic scholarships for college-bound young people of limited means, the foundation offers funding to assist teachers in furthering their own education. The Tanoto Teacher Scholarships not only increase teachers’ skills and knowledge, but also allow them to provide better education to their students. In keeping with the Tanoto Foundation’s overall goals, these benefits to teachers and students are a major contributor to economic growth in local communities and the nation as a whole.

Recently, two teachers who have benefited from Teacher Scholarships spoke publicly about the way the program has improved their lives and boosted their careers.

Dedi Santosa, a young teacher in a public school in Tanjung Jabung Barat in Jambi Province, Sumatra, began by describing the rigorous admission process he completed to earn the scholarship. The three-part procedure consisted of administrative paperwork, a psychological evaluation, and a series of interviews. Mr. Santosa had never taken a psychological test before, and he was challenged to complete some components of the admissions process in only a few hours. However, the financially struggling teacher, whose livelihood is based on honorariums, noted that his efforts paid off in offering him expanded opportunities for earning a good living.

A second educator, Myrta Andini, teaches elementary students in a public school in Sumatra’s Riau Province. She also found the admissions criteria challenging, but credits careful preparation with helping her to pass. Ms. Andini said that she first learned of the Tanoto Teacher Scholarship opportunity from her parents, and expressed her appreciation for the chance to increase her ability to provide a better education for her students.

Indonesian entrepreneur and billionaire Sukanto Tanoto created the Tanoto Foundation to help Indonesia’s people lift themselves out of poverty. Economic hardship forced Mr. Tanoto to leave his own formal schooling while he was still in his teens, but he went on to found the RGE Group, a now-$15 billion corporate family of natural resource manufacturing companies. Through his foundation, he supports education as a means of empowering the ordinary people who will increase Indonesia’s ability to compete in the global economy.

Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series Continues Educational Efforts

In early December 2014, the Tanoto Foundation’s Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series once again united young people interested in business careers with some of the country’s most successful entrepreneurs.

Susi Pudjiastuti recently became Indonesia’s first cabinet-level minster to have never finished high school. The new Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries left her formal education as a teen and started her own seafood and fisheries business, now a multi-million-dollar concern. Her company, based in West Java, transports its products throughout the region surrounding Indonesia on its own fleet of airplanes called Susi Air.

Irwan Hidayat heads PT Sido Muncul, a family herbal medicine business that he took public in 2013. After modernizing operations in the early 1970s, Mr. Hidayat established research centers at several colleges in order to prove the efficacy of his company’s products. Today, Sido Muncul’s herbal medicines have gained widespread acceptance throughout Indonesian society. Thanks to his company’s success, Mr. Hidayat’s net worth stood at $660 million at the end of 2014. Forbes magazine currently lists him as one of Indonesia’s 50 richest individuals.

Sukanto Tanoto, ranked among Indonesia’s top ten on the Forbes list, heads the RGE Group, which he grew from a small family-owned business into a $15 billion international natural resources manufacturing powerhouse. Through the Tanoto Foundation, he, his wife, and their grown children give back to their country by funding a wide variety of social service initiatives, early-childhood learning projects, and scholarships and educational programs for young adults. Mr. Tanoto had to leave school early due to family economic difficulties. Thus, the Entrepreneurship Series’ mission of inspiring today’s young people to work hard, take strategic risks, and believe in their abilities is particularly meaningful to him.

At the December 2014 event, held in Jakarta, Susi Pudjiastuti and Irwan Hidayat related the struggles and challenges they themselves had to overcome as new entrepreneurs. The series receives additional support from the University of Indonesia’s Faculty of Economics.