Sukanto Tanoto is the Founder and Chairman of RGE, a global resource-based manufacturing group of companies with corporate offices in Singapore, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Beijing and Nanjing.
He started his first business in 1967 as a supplier of spare parts and construction contractor to the oil industry; he founded RGE as a plywood business in 1973.
Today, RGE companies own manufacturing operations in China, Indonesia and Brazil and sales offices worldwide. The business covers pulp and paper (APRIL and Asia Symbol), palm oil (Asian Agri and Apical), viscose staple fibre (Sateri), specialty cellulose (Bracell), and energy (Pacific Oil and Gas).
In 1981, Mr Tanoto and his family formed the Tanoto Foundation to help reduce poverty and advance human achievement worldwide. Working in the areas of education, healthcare and disaster relief, the foundation provides scholarships to students and honorariums to teachers (particularly those in rural areas), builds schools, and provides healthcare in remote areas and rapid-response assistance in earthquakes and other natural calamities.
Mr Tanoto is a member of the INSEAD International Council, the Wharton Board of Overseers and various other educational, community and industry bodies. He is a recipient of the Wharton School Dean’s Medal Award, which recognises individuals for their contributions to the enlargement of the global economy and to the improvement of lives worldwide.