Sukanto Tanoto


In the Beginning: Sowing the Seeds of a Global Enterprise

On a fine morning in 1967, a gentleman entered the premises of Toko Motor, a spare parts supply shop in Medan, Indonesia. There, he found Sukanto Tanoto, who had recently taken over the reins of the family business when his father fell ill.

Impressed by the fair pricing, the gentleman returned the following week and identified himself as an auditor for a state-owned oil and gas company. He wanted Sukanto Tanoto to supply spare parts to his company.

Through his commitment to competitive pricing, Sukanto Tanoto, who was only 17 at that time, earned his first big break—and sowed the seeds of what would eventually become RGE, whose business groups today hold assets exceeding US $18 billion and collectively employ more than 60,000 employees worldwide.

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Tanoto Foundation Founder Sukanto Tanoto Spurs Research in Asian Family Business and Entrepreneurship Studies

Supporting entrepreneurship among Asia's family businesses is a topic close to the heart of Tanoto Foundation Founder Sukanto Tanoto.

From his first foray into the world of business 50 years ago in Medan, Indonesia to chairing RGE--a company that manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies with operations the world over--Sukanto Tanoto's family has been a constant source of support. Today, Sukanto Tanoto's family work alongside a team of dedicated professionals as they take the family's businesses to the next lap.

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RGE Founder & Chairman Sukanto Tanoto Marks 50 Years in Business by Launching Core Values

Employees at RGE and its business groups who have heard Founder & Chairman Sukanto Tanoto in-person are familiar with his refrain that it is not only in the legal licenses obtained from the government that its companies across the world are allowed to operate, but the social license earned by partnering local communities and by uplifting them. This eventually became crystalized in RGE’s 5Cs philosophy.

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The Best Around: RGE Employees Capture the 5Cs in Their Winning Photos

In this week's edition of Inside RGE, we feature the employees whose photos adorn July to September in our 2017 desktop calendar. These winners have so aptly and lovingly captured 5Cs business philosophy espoused by RGE Founder & Chairman Sukanto Tanoto — Good for Community, Country, Climate, Customer, and Company — in last year’s contest that saw over 500 entries from RGE’s global workforce. 

All three photos were taken by proud Asian Agri employees such as Willam, whose winning entry beautifully captured plantation workers tending to high-yield Topaz seeds. Through the use of cutting-edge technology, Asian Agri has managed to ensure greater sustainability in their practices, which also include a strict no-burn policy and investment in R&D to cultivate the most productive oil palms.

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[Guest Blog] More than a Dream: GCNS and Yale-NUS Visits Kerinci

Editors note: This post is a guest blog, crafted by Ong Kok Chung. Kok Chung is a 21 year old advocate for the environment, who most recently helped to organise the Global Compact Network Singapore Youth Forum. He is awaiting to enter the National University of Singapore. 

As part of the follow up of the Global Compact Network Singapore (GCNS) Youth Forum, I was very excited to have the chance to visit APRIL’s site, to learn more about the paper production processes of one of the world's largest paper producer. Our trip was really a learning journey that exposed us to different parts of the whole paper production process, and also showed us how APRIL actually gives back to the Indonesian community in the rural areas and provide welfare for the community that lives with Pangkalan Kerinci.

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Fighting the Good Fight: Tanoto Foundation Boosts the Fight Against Cancer

Few words exist that strike as much distress in our hearts as the word cancer. In Asia, the fight is made even more difficult with the prevalence of cancers specific to the region. Unfortunately, the preponderance of such cancers to Asian populations has led to a lack of information in mainstream medical literature, most of which are still Western-centric. However, one Singaporean doctor is looking to change all that, with the help of Tanoto Foundation.

Fighting Cancer through Research 

Associate Professor Lim Soon Thye is the most recent recipient of a Tanoto Foundation Professorship. Currently Senior Consultant and Head of the Division of Medical Oncology at National Cancer Centre Singapore and Assistant Dean at Duke-NUS Medical School, Assoc. Prof Lim was conferred the Tanoto Foundation Professorship for Medical Oncology in 2016. This award will boost his research in cancer, and specifically, Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

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RGE Celebrates 50 Years in Business

RGE 50 celebrations kicked off with a three-day celebration in Medan, Indonesia. It was in Medan where a young Sukanto Tanoto started his entrepreneurial journey under difficult family circumstances. Five decades later, RGE manages a successful group of world-class resource-based companies with over US$18 billion in assets and 60,000 employees.

Reconnecting with the past, moving towards the future

Over three days, nearly 400 senior employees and their spouses from various business groups around the world participated in enrichment workshops, a uniquely Medan night festival and a gala dinner. New ties were forged and renewed with alumni and friends across the group. Through various activities, everyone reconnected with the group's past and future.

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