Entrepreneur of the Month: Mr. Brian Chan 

Starting this year, INACHAM HK introduces a new section of “Entrepreneur of the Month” which features a business player and her/his story particularly to the Indonesia market. This month, we proudly present Mr. Brian Chan.

從今年開始,香港印尼商會推出了一個新的「月度最佳企業家」欄目,專門介紹一位企業家以及他/她在印尼市場的事蹟。這個月,我們榮幸地介紹  陳栢林先生。

What kind of business do you do in Indonesia? 

First and foremost, ELL Environmental Limited owns and operates biomass power plants in Indonesia, and we also produce biomass wood pellets for biomass power plants in Far East Asia. Currently we are in the exploration phase for fast-growing biomass plantations, so that we can achieve a sustainable raw material supply, and at the same time create jobs and industries for thousands of Indonesians across the country.


Why Indonesia?  

We have always wanted to invest in Indonesia given our family background as second generation Indonesian Chinese. Plus, it is good business to explore Indonesia for it is one of the fastest growing economies in the world with huge potential for renewable energy, which aligns with our company’s vision.

Speaking of biomass energy, Indonesia has a myriad of favorable conditions for growing biomass, whether you like it or not, vegetations just grow year-round in the warm and wet climate, along with the excellent soil condition. The plants harness its energy from the sun converting to biomass, and we turn that biomass into electricity. Essentially it is solar energy! 

However, solar energy is still far and few in Indonesia, because you need a significant adjustable baseload power, and a stable grid for solar to be utilized effectively. Think if you need a stable power supply for homes and industries, you need a constant supply of electricity, and the sun can only be there for just half the time. 




What are the challenges?  

My main challenge in Indonesia comes from the unclear, sometimes contradictory and often changing regulations, it is important to be in the market, and always staying alert to the latest development. Understanding the reasons behind the policies, whether it is sustainable, and how it impacts the economy are all crucial to making the right business decisions in Indonesia. 

It is often costly to commit a mistake in Indonesia, and I have learned this the hard way. That is why I wish to share my experience with fellow members of InachamHK, so they may succeed and avoid some of the painful lessons I had in doing business in Indonesia.



What do you think about Indonesia in 5 years?  

I honestly don’t know what Indonesia will be like in 5 years. In the past 7 years that I have been in Jakarta, things have changed so much, mostly for the better. Not only have we seen huge improvement in infrastructure, the way the digital economy transformed people’s lives in Indonesia is astonishing. I still remember back in 2013, even Google Maps didn’t work so well, and traveling around Jakarta without knowing Indonesian would be slightly more difficult. Today you can order anything on your smartphone, go anywhere with a touch on the map.

With the growing tension between China and the USA, Indonesia could play an important role for both countries. The former being an important trading partner in Southeast Asia, as well as a market for Chinese companies to expand to, the latter benefiting from Indonesia’s large labor pool market and thirst to industrialize as some of them plan for exit strategy out of China.

We are witnessing history as we speak, and if you are a serious entrepreneur that’s looking for a vibrant and growing economy that’s close to Hong Kong, you have to keep an eye out for Indonesia.




Reference :

Mr. Brian Chan  
CEO of ELL Environmental Limited  
Email: bchan@ellhk.com   
Website: www.ellhk.com