Sukanto Tanoto is one of the few Indonesian businessmen who are able to compete at an international level. The Founder and Chairman of Royal Golden Eagle (RGE) has worked hard to transform RGE into a world-class corporation, and to be able to succeed in the global market.

RGE has business units spread across the globe – not only in Indonesia, but also in China, Brazil, Spain and Canada. RGE business units are operating in various industries, such as palm oil, specialty cellulose, viscose fibre, pulp and paper, and oil and gas.

Sukanto Tanoto can be an example for other businessmen in Indonesia because his companies are all able to compete in the global market, even those that are based in Indonesia. For example the APRIL Group, which Tanoto founded in 1993 in the Pangkalan Kerinci region, Riau. Now APRIL is listed as one of the largest pulp and paper producers in the world, with a production of up to 2.8 million tons of pulp, and up to 1.15 million tons of paper production per year.

APRIL produces premium paper products called PaperOne, which is high in demand in the international market, and currently being sold in more than 70 countries worldwide. Initially Sukanto Tanoto struggled in his pursuit of the pulp and paper industry, but he learned from his failures and used it as a motivation to pursue the industry, and he finally made it with APRIL.

The key to Tanoto’s success was a strong will to follow global standards in the pulp and paper industry, and the determination to bring his company to the highest levels possible in the international market.

Tanoto decided to venture into the pulp and paper industry in Brazil and studied the ins and outs of the success of the industry in Brazil. The knowledge he gained there was applied to the growth of APRIL, which was professionally managed in accordance with high standards of world-class companies.

APRIL managed their plantations well, maximising their competitive advantage of being in the tropics well, which resulted in a contrast large stock of raw materials. All these elements have contributed to the success of APRIL. APRIL also implemented the Sustainable Forest Management Policy (SFMP) 2.0, which guarantees that APRIL conducts its research on high conservation value areas, as a result, natural forests are always maintained.

This is an important step in the global standardisation of plantation management, as the international market will not accept products obtained from companies that does not pay attention to environmental sustainability in operations. This efficiency enabled APRIL to compete and succeed in the international market. This is a true example of Sukanto Tanoto’s ability to compete and rise at the global level, which he hopes will inspire other Indonesian entrepreneurs to follow suit.