Now! people |

New Year, New Vision From Indonesia’s Business Leaders?

NOW! PEOPLE | 21 March 2022

We asked some serious business leaders to look post-pandemic, to the future of the country: now pushing forward with its key role in G20, the major move of the business community through B20, to the rapid development of the crypto currencies and NFT markets, to the looming expansion of the Metaverse, the continued China-US tensions, and the unresolved problem in Myanmar plus the increased Russia-NATO challenges etc etc. It is an increasingly complex and potentially divided world we are facing. But experienced and calm businesspeople like Noni Purnomo Chairwoman/ Komisaris Utama of the increasingly diversified Bluebird Group see the path quite clearly.

Now! Jakarta :What do you think are the most important factors for Indonesia to concentrate on to improve our economy and the welfare of the people over the next 12-24 months?

NP:  It is a time of turbulence. We are challenged with uncertainty as never before in our lifetime. It is a delicate balance to juggle. What is important is that Indonesia needs to be ambidextrous. We need to be able to focus on fixing the things that are broken or lagging and yet at the same time, innovate for the future. Health and education should  be the focus to ‘fix’ things, not just temporarily but permanently through better education and improved quality of life.

We need to improve the digital infrastructure to support the new economy and  the hard infrastructure to support logistics, and improve the ease of doing business across the country.  I would suggest these should be our  focus for innovation. Indonesia aspires to be in the big 5 world economies, so our task is to make sure that our demography will remain our asset, and not become a liability. Indonesia has all the resources needed to excel, but we need to focus on prioritisation as we have limited strength.

N!J: What are the greatest challenges we face?    

NP:  Facing the unknown. Do we have the ability and willingness to accept our own reality and not be in denial and then transform. At Blue Bird, I kept reminding our team that we were an elephant, a big strong elephant. But now we need to change to become a cheetah. Strong but lean and agile. The process is painful, but we have no choice. 

Indonesia’s greatest challenge is to make sure that we do not fall into the middle income trap.

N!J: What are your hopes and desires for Indonesia’s developments in the next 12 months?

NP:  Indonesia is a great country with great potential.  The government has been doing extra well in handling the Covid situation. But we all need to work together, not just relying on others. We need to contribute actively, and collaborate. Don’t focus on what we don’t have. We need to focus on what we have and how we can maximise our strengths together, for Indonesia.

It is very important for us to find the sweet spot, where Technology meets Humanity meets Economic Values. Technology shall be created and advanced to support our life.

DR (HC) Noni Sri Ayati Purnomo B.Eng., MBA, affectionately known as Noni Purnomo is the President Commissioner of PT Blue Bird Tbk since 2019, a mother of 3 girls, a businesswoman and an active philanthropist.

Noni completed her bachelor’s degree at Newcastle University, Australia majoring in Industrial Engineering and then a Master of Business Administration from the University of San Francisco, USA majoring in Finance and Marketing in 1995. In 2019, Noni received her Doctor of Letters (HC) degree from Newcastle University, Australia. 

While  serving as the President Commissioner of PT Blue Bird Tbk, Noni is also actively involved in various social activities and is the founder of Bluebird Peduli whose activities focus on Education, Women’s Empowerment, Environmental Conservation, Community and Cultural Development. 

Up to 2020, Bluebird Peduli has already provided educational scholarships to more than 33,000 children of Bluebird Group employees and drivers and also provided assistance to several scavenger school foundations. While in women’s empowerment, Noni launched the Kartini Bluebird program as an effort to increase the empowerment of Indonesian women, especially housewives and the wives of Bluebird drivers through training and learning courses such as sewing, embroidery, cooking, and cake making.