Business Accomplishments for a Better Community

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Collaboration of RAPP and the Local Government in Riau

Infrastructures are major requirement for improving economic activities of the community. Based on this awareness, Sukanto Tanoto always emphasizes the need for helping the communities with underdeveloped infrastructures. He realizes that without adequate infrastructures, such as road and bridges, the community members cannot do anything to improve their standard of living. Building infrastructures is the most important strategy to help the community get out of the isolation and poverty. Therefore, RAPP (PT. Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper) puts special emphasis on the basic infrastructures.

Collaboration of RAPP and the Local Government

The Local Governments around the areas, where RAPP operates, have established collaboration with the companies that operate there. Previously, social stewardships of these companies focused more on socio-economic infrastructures, community empowerment, and environmental sustainability. The local governments in Riau Province have attempted to broad the collaboration to include road construction.  PT. Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP) is one of the first companies that have made an agreement to support the local government.

More importantly, the company collaborates not only with the local government but also with the local people. The company also commits to hire local labors to do the construction jobs. This will give the villagers with an immediate source of extra income. The company also welcomes the surrounding communities to propose what they need and the management team will review and consider them.

Road Construction by RAPP

As a manifestation of the agreement, in 2014 RAPP had finished building a connecting road. In Pulau Padang, Kepulauan Meranti Regency, the company built a connecting road that covers 12 kilometers of length. The road connects two villages, which include six sub-villages in Tarik Putri Puyu Sub-district. They are Dusun Sungai Hiu, Dakal, Sungai Labu, Sungai Mata, and Sukajadi. The road will certainly facilitate the community members and local villagers to transport their crops and commodities. Easier transportation means cheaper costs.  This long-awaited road will also open more chances for the local villagers to improve their prosperity.

In 2015, the company under RGE Group led by SukantoTanoto, continues the same partnership with the Local Government of Kuantan Singingi (Kuansing). This year, RAPP manages a road paving project that includes 5 kilometers of length from Benai to Cerenti. It begun earlier this month and is expected to finish within 120 workdays. The Local Government had made an agreement with 3 companies to pave 9 meters road with a budget of Rp. 30 billions. Of the 9 meters, RAPP alone is responsible for 5 kilometers by allocating 14 millions of fund.

Apical Group and Business Principles for Sustainability

As the mainstay of economic activities in remote areas, agricultural sector becomes the focus of RGE group companies, including Apical Group. Yes, RGE group, which is owned by one of Indonesia’s tycoons, Sukanto Tanoto, focuses in various aspects of palm oil industry, including sourcing, crude palm oil (CPO) trading, refining, and merchandising distribution in Indonesia and China. Apical’s products are made into various end products used by people around the world in their daily life.

Apical Group and Business Principles

SukantoTanoto applies almost similar principles in all of the companies led by RGE Group. The same thing is true for Apical Group. It is one of the largest exporters of palm oil in Indonesia and controls wide spectrum of palm-relate business chain. The large business entity is built mainly upon three models, namely reliable and wide-ranging network of CPO sources, integration of assets in its primary and secondary refinery facilities, and efficient logistic channels. This way, the company ensures that the diversified buyers receive products in uniform quality.

The business model allows Apical Group to take control over the quality, to focus on sustainability and food safety, and to ensure efficiency and synergy in every step it takes within the business chain. This way, it is able to ensure profits for all shareholders. In addition, Sukanto Tanoto never underestimates the need for sustainable operation in his businesses, which mainly focus on natural resource exploration. He realizes that agricultural sector, such as oil palm cultivation, plays a significant role in the social economic development of the rural areas. Therefore, the business must be managed in a sustainable way to contribute to the economic improvements of all stakeholders in a sustainable way.

Apical Group and Sustainable Business Operation

To prove its commitment to the sustainable environment, Apical Group has made many efforts. They include collaboration with suppliers and stakeholders in building a transparent and appreciable supply chain of palm oil. Recently, it backed the New York Declaration of Forests during the United Nations Climate Summit, which was held in September 2014. In addition, it participates in Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) as an active member.

Apical Group attempts to improve its sustainable business principle from time to time. In 2014, for example, it signed Sustainable Palm Oil Manifesto, established Sustainable Palm Oil Policy, and published the policy statement in its website. The policy statement maintains its commitment to protect areas with high carbon stock and conservation value, protect peat land of any depth, and to drive socio-economic activities of the surrounding communities.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Unique Approach to Environment by Tanoto Foundation

The fact that Sukanto Tanoto loves education and environment is something unquestionable. This is evident from various efforts, which Tanoto Foundation has made to encourage the communities in the area, where Royal Golden Eagle companies operate, to maintain and love the environment. The Indonesia richest businessman admits that the love for the environment must be developed since the early age.

Among the environmental stewardship programs managed by the foundation are training sessions, which involve environmental themes, for elementary school students and teachers. The following are two unique approached recently used by the foundation.

Tanoto Foundation Held Doll Puppetry for Environment

Tanoto Foundation recently managed a unique program to increase the community awareness about the environmental sustainability. It held a doll puppetry entitled Ice Cream from Waste for a group that consisted of students and teachers. The puppetry show was a part of Pelita Sekolah Sehat and Pelita Sekolah Ramah Lingkungan (PSS-PSRI) Training managed by the foundation at Batubara Regency, North Sumatra Province and involving 33 teachers.

The puppetry show made use of doll character to deliver different messages related to environment. The show essentially focused on the importance of sorting the waste and providing waste bank. On the other hand, the students from the surrounding areas were involved in sorting the garbage they collected around the area. Then, the money was used to buy ice cream.

Tanoto Foundation Established an Environment-Oriented School

Another unique program managed by Tanoto Foundation to promote environmental sustainability efforts was establishing an environment-oriented elementary school called Global Andalan Elementary School at Pelalawan, Riau. This is the manifestation of how Sukanto Tanoto cares about education in the poverty alleviation efforts. The alternative elementary school is established within the area managed by Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP).

Global Andalan is an alternative elementary school, which focuses on three elements, namely, individual approach, holistic approach by involving individual students, family, and teacher, and talent and experience-oriented approach. It was established as an effort for promoting awareness about the environment among the local villagers by means of education. Since most of the surrounding villagers are agricultural labors with low education and low income.

The surrounding environment brings huge opportunities for the surrounding communities. Therefore, Global Andalan Elementary School under the control of Tanoto Foundation encourages the students to be closer to the environment. Therefore, the curriculum is designed to make use of the nature as the main media. It is designed to develop their hard skill to plant vegetables and soft skills in teamwork and helping each other in doing their jobs.

Friday, January 2, 2015

High Interest for Tanoto Foundation Scholarship Program

Scholarships often become parts of CSR programs of many corporations, but scholarship program from Sukanto Tanoto’s foundation, Tanoto Foundation, especially garners thousands of interested participants every year, although only hundreds of them can pass. This is because Tanoto Foundation scholarship programs offer a lot of benefits and open opportunities for students from various backgrounds to earn good education and be successful in the future.

Astonishing example is this year’s scholarship program, which has garnered about eight thousands applications, although only two hundreds scholarships given.

What Tanoto Foundation Scholarship Program Offers

Tanoto Foundation offers a lot of benefits for its scholarship programs. Applicants for undergraduate and graduate programs can get these opportunities:
·  Getting full scholarships. Tanoto Foundation scholarships give full scholarship until the end of the study period.
·  Learning at renowned universities; Tanoto Foundation partners with several recognized universities with high education standard such as Indonesia University (UI), Gadjah Mada University, Jambi University, Mulawarman University, and many more. These universities are usually quite hard to enter for students with less privileged condition, so the scholarships help more potential students to get good education.
·  Getting job opportunities. Tanoto offers more opportunities to work at RGE Group for students who receive Tanoto Foundation scholarships, to support potential Indonesian graduates and reduce outsourcing.
·  Management and leadership training. Students who receive Tanoto Foundation scholarships also get opportunities to join management and leadership training programs conducted by the foundation in certain periods. This is to make sure that students that get the scholarships have soft skills they need to compete and achieve success in the future.

These benefits have made many students competed for scholarship opportunities, and they who got the scholarships have proven themselves in scientific competitions, inventions, and many more that showed their creativity.

Selections for the Scholarship Applicants

Basically the scholarship application is similar with other programs; the interested students must send applications and essays, and go through several processes that end up in final interview. One of students that earned opportunity this year, East Javanese Ayudya Triastika, told that the interview was set like a discussion, so the interviewers got good observations on how the applicants delivering opinions and thoughts. So far, the foundation noted satisfactory progresses from students that received the scholarships.

Getting good education is right of every child, but not everyone can earn this opportunity despite their skills and potentials. Sukanto Tanoto is a man who look up to good education, and he wants to make sure that all potential students get that opportunity.

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