Bringing the efficiencies of the Bumi boardroom to the government

Would how a man run his business be an indication of how he would run the country if he were president?

Assume this is true and we would have an interesting thought exercise of how Bakrie would run Indonesia.

Imagine Indonesia in 2015. An anti corruption group, headed by a prominent Indonesian whose credibility and integrity is well established and who has a stature in international forums, calls a press conference to say that the Government is corrupt and needs a radical clean up. They then detail specific areas where it needs to get its act together. We can assume that they have tried working within the system and failed miserably. Out of sheer frustration they turn to the Press, hoping that some publicity would shame the Government into acting.

The Government spokesperson reacts, and instead of addressing the problems brought up or being open minded enough to say they’ll investigate, decides to chide the Anti-corruption group for not following protocol; if they are unhappy with the Government.

“The Anti-Corruption Group hasn’t addressed these issues with us,” the spokesman said, referring to at the petition by the group where they outlined their grievances with the Government.

“If they want to raise any issues, as a citizens, we would expect them to follow accepted procedures and raise concerns at the proper forums (such as KPK, the House Commissions and the Police that would be functioning as business units of Government Inc. by then) and at the appropriate time.”

Did a chill just go up you spine? One went up mine when I read the story below from The Jakarta Globe:


Rothschild Calls for Clean-Up at Bakrie’s Bumi Resources

Rothschild in happier times


British financier Nathaniel Rothschild has criticized the management and corporate governance at Bumi Resources, the Indonesian coal company he is trying to transform into a top-tier global miner, the Financial Times reported on Thursday.

The newspaper said it has seen a letter written by Rothschild calling for a “radical cleaning up” of Bumi, the Jakarta-based affiliate of London-listed Bumi Plc.

Rothschild is co-chairman of the London-listed firm, his joint venture with Indonesia’s politically connected Bakrie family that holds a 29 percent stake in Bumi Resources.

Aburizal Bakrie is the chairman of the Golkar Party.

“Both myself and the Bakries need an immediate transformation of the way you are choosing to manage PT Bumi Resources,” Rothschild wrote in his letter to Ari Hudaya, a long-time Bakrie family lieutenant who is chief executive of both PT Bumi Resources and Bumi.

It was the first public sign of strains in the relationship between the two business dynasties, who investors applauded a year ago for creating the world’s biggest thermal coal company.

In an interview with the FT, Rothschild said his relationship with the Bakries, major shareholders of Bumi, “is just fine,” adding that they would be “thrilled when they read a copy of this letter.”

Chris Fong, a spokesman for the Bakrie family, whose financial difficulties forced them to sell half of their Bumi stake this month, said the letter had taken them by surprise.

“Nat Rothschild hasn’t addressed these issues with us,” Fong said, referring to a passage in the letter in which Rothschild said that the Bakries wanted a transformation in Bumi Resources.

“If he wants to raise any issues, as a shareholder and board member, we would expect him to follow accepted corporate governance procedures and raise concerns at the board level and at the appropriate time.”

According to two sources close to the group, the letter was the result of a boardroom battle between the Bakries and Rothschild, in which Rothschild had demanded Ari Hudaya’s replacement as CEO.

Reuters was unable to contact Rothschild to seek comment.


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