Buoyed by its healthy economy, Indonesia has enjoyed a construction boom in recent years, with new expressways, subways, power plants and other major infrastructure developments taking place throughout the country. PT. Berlian Amal Perkasa (BAP) is a Jakarta-based company that rents construction equipment. Established in May 2014 as a three-way joint venture between Mitsubishi Corporation (MC), MC Group company Nikken Corporation, and a local partner, BAP's mission was to be the first foreign capitalized player in Indonesia's rental market. Leading the venture was MC's Jun Fujimoto, who currently serves as General Manager of BAP's Operation Division.
This business began as a means of improving Indonesians' quality of life by updating their infrastructure, but that is much easier said than done. In its construction equipment rental space, Indonesia has many unique regulations that complicate market entry by foreign enterprises. A breakthrough needed to be found. But where? And how? After struggling to find it, Fujimoto realized that priority number one had to be "Safety & Security."
At present, BAP counts approximately 140 cranes and other pieces of construction machinery among its rental assets, and it employs roughly the same number of operators. Normally, construction workers in Indonesia are under contract only for the duration of the projects, so Fujimoto made the bold move to have BAP hire its own operators as full-time, regular employees. His thinking was that if the company really did intend to prioritize safety and security, then each and every one of its employees had to share that responsibility and motivation, and for that to be possible, they each needed to feel a sense of pride and personal attachment to the company as well. "Thanks to the commitment of its workforce, BAP has really made a name for itself in Indonesia," says Fujimoto. "The company's equipment has an excellent reputation for reliability and being accident free." The company's tri-color (red, blue and green) logo is steadily reshaping the landscape in Indonesia's construction industry.
That Fujimoto was able to overcome so many barriers is a testament to the support he received, both publicly and privately, from two employees from Nikken Corporation, Takeo Kobayashi and Tamotsu Onda. The three men arrived in Indonesia at the same time, and as they lived in the same service area, they quickly became friends. "Kobayashi and Onda know everything there is to know about the rental game," says Fujimoto. "At times they have supported me in my ideas, and at other times they have put the brakes on them, but their advice has always been invaluable. I think the three of us have worked well together in a supervisory capacity, and I think the workers have come to respect us for that."
Fujimoto was captain of his tennis team at university, and he likens corporate organizations to tennis team competitions. Success relies on both individual skills and team unity. "BAP has made good progress in growing its business and organization. In fact, it continues to exceed top management's expectations. Only time will tell just how far we can go in this industry." Ensuring that the BAP team remains united will depend on how supportive that top management is. Fujimoto reminds himself of that every day, as he leads BAP towards a very promising future.
This article appeared in Asahi Shimbun's "GLOBE" feature of January 7, 2018.