Experience and expertise inform every step of our business, from seed-to-shelf. Hear from our technical experts and leaders in the fields of agronomy, sustainability, food and nutrition, trading, shipping, commercial and consumer products.
Alex Kurniawan joined the company in 2017 and currently leads our consumer products division in Indonesia. Products under his care include household names such as Filma, Kunci Mas, Pristine, and Groovy. Alex has grown the business, increased market share and improved overall profitability. He plans further expansions, strengthen brand equity in the company’s products and establish a robust distribution network with a rigorous channel focus.
Alex has 20 years of experience in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector with companies such as Mead Johnson, Reckitt Benckiser, Loreal, and PepsiCo. Before joining GAR, Alex was a Marketing Director in PT Kino Indonesia.
He has a master’s degree in Management from Prasetiya Mulya Business School, Indonesia.
“Besides providing products of the highest quality, what we’re trying to do is give consumers the most value – products that they need, supplied conveniently. It might sound like a tall order, but I believe where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
Ian Suwarganda manages the company’s international advocacy efforts to ensure access to markets for commerce and investment. He formalises a policy agenda, develops positions, and implements strategies to address relevant policy threats and opportunities, as well as legislation and regulations influencing the organisation. In his role, he engages with stakeholders from policymakers to non-profit representatives about responsibly produced palm oil.
He has over eight years of experience in sustainability topics. Prior to joining GAR in 2014, he was with IDH The Sustainable Trade Initiative as a programme manager in the pulp and paper sector. He worked closely with producers, industry associations, NGOs and relevant government agencies, developing and co-investing with them in sustainable forest management projects in Sumatra and Kalimantan.
Ian represents GAR at High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA), International Sustainability and Carbon Certification System (ISCC), and District Collaborative Forum to Achieve Sustainable Development in Indonesia.
Ian has a Master Degree in Business Administration from INSEAD.
“In my current role, I am advocating with the European Union for European buyers and member states to invest in the sustainable livelihoods of small-scale farmers and their local communities in Indonesia’s rural areas. To fight climate change, protect forests while alleviating poverty, stakeholders have yet to implement solutions for rural farmers and communities, at scale.”
Khoo Kok Yeow leads our IT and digital teams in GAR, managing around 230 employees. Since joining the company in 2017, Kok Yeow has re-organised the teams, allowing deep domain expertise to be nurtured internally. Kok Yeow is currently operating IT in two tracks – one focuses on traditional IT, and the second focuses on innovative digital agenda: cloud, remote sensing, internet of things, machine learning, artificial intelligence, etc.
He also heads the Corporate Functions Shared Services, driving cost efficiency, operational excellence and a continuous improvement mindset in his team. Building on the motto of ‘repeatable, predictable and measurable operations’, his focus here is on value-added services such as machine learning and artificial intelligence-based analytics.
Prior to GAR, Kok Yeow was with Accenture for 23 years. Over the last 20 years, he has been involved in a large number of transformation engagements, as well as other strategic consulting initiatives, predominantly with resources industry clients. Kok Yeow also has extensive Finance and Accounting, HR and IT shared services operations and governance experience, having architected, designed, transitioned and operated shared services (for these functions) at various large multi-nationals.
“In challenging times, I hold dear this quote from Margaret Mitchell’s novel Gone with the Wind – ‘Life is under no obligation to give us what we expect’. So no matter the trial, we must face it without fear, and work hard to adapt and change for the better.”
Lim Shu Ling has worked with GAR since 2015. She oversees the preparation and publication of the company’s annual Sustainability Report. She also handles GAR’s ESG disclosures and reporting on various international platforms including DJSI, FTSE4Good, CDP, Sustainalytics, SPOTT and others. She works closely with Investor Relations and Finance in briefing financial stakeholders on GAR’s ESG performance.
Shu Ling began her career as a journalist and has worked with various media organisations including the BBC’s Business News Division. She has also gained expertise in Indonesian and external stakeholder relations from her work on a UNDP project in Indonesia. Shu Ling has a Master Degree in Asian Politics from the School of Asian and African Studies (University of London).
“ESG reporting is not only about dry figures and data; increasingly and in the post COVID-19 world, ESG performance and reporting on that performance will be what distinguishes companies who will win out and stay in business in the long term from those who don’t.”
Rafael Buhay Concepcion, Jr. is an Executive Director and the Chief Financial Officer of GAR. He has been a Director of GAR since August 2002.
He has over 30 years of experience in corporate and strategic finance. Rafael joined the company in 1997 and rose through the ranks to become Chief Financial Officer in January 2013. He is also currently the Commissioner of our subsidiary PT SMART Tbk, which is listed on the Indonesia Stock Exchange.
Prior to joining GAR, Rafael spent five years with the Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation.
Rafael studied at the University of the Philippines where he obtained a Bachelor Degree in Economics in 1988. He later obtained a Master Degree in Business Administration from the Asian Institute of Management, Philippines in 1992 with scholarship from SGV Philippines.
“Being a CFO isn’t just about financial stewardship – for me it’s also being fortunate enough to be part of the exciting growth story behind GAR, helping it to develop into a major integrated agri-business, and knowing that we’re supporting hundreds of thousands of workers and their families.”
Richard Fung leads GAR’s Investor Relations department, and is responsible for driving engagement with our analysts, investors, and shareholders. He works closely with senior management to provide timely and accurate information to investors, and reflecting stakeholder feedback to the board of directors – elements critical in achieving value for the company.
He has been with the company since 2008, and has more than 20 years of experience in Finance, particularly in the area of corporate finance.
Before joining GAR, Richard held leadership positions at Sampoerna Telecom, AcrossAsia Multimedia, and UBS Warburg. He has been involved in various capital market transactions including M&A, IPO, equity and bond issuance, and bank financing.
Richard has a Master Degree and PhD in Business Administration from Erasmus University in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
“My focus is on providing investors with the best possible insight into the strategy, operations and performance of GAR. My passion is to make investors aware of the many benefits palm oil has to offer, not in the least that it can be produced in a sustainable manner.”
Tony Liwang leads our Plant Production and Biotechnology division, which looks into the biotechnology of oil palm, and carries out research activities to improve planting material and seed stock.
He has been with GAR for over 21 years, holding various research and development roles within the company. He was previously the Head of our SMART Research Institute.
Tony has more than 30 years of experience in agriculture-based technologies. He was part of the founding committee of ICOPE, the International Conference on Oil Palm and the Environment, serving as its first chairman in 2009.
Tony received his PhD from the Bogor Agricultural Institute, Indonesia. He also has Master and Bachelor Degrees in Agricultural Technology from Wageningen Agricultural University, the Netherlands.
“Many people have a perception that farming and agriculture, being more to do with nature, has no relation to technology. However, that is not that case. As a company we are highly driven by research and technology. In fact, biotechnology for oil palm has seen rapid development, especially in the last five years in which we have identified its whole genetic map.”