Student Voice (Rio J. Sugeng)


Transferring modern Japanese business practices to Indonesia to lead the future growth of the country

Rio J Sugeng
Faculty of Environment and Information Studies (3rd year)
From: Indonesia
Theme of Research or Project: Business and marketing

I was originally interested in going to study in Singapore, but had always had a love for Japan, having been influenced by my grandfather who used to do business with Japan. After finding the course in English at SFC, I decided to come to Japan instead. I did not want to spend time learning Japanese before starting a course, but with the GIGA Program I could learn about Japanese language and culture alongside my studies. It was the best choice I could have made, as I was able to learn so much more here than I could have in Singapore.

I plan to return to Indonesia in the future to become a business leader, and to help promote the development of the country. My father runs a company in Indonesia, but I want to expand upon what he has already achieved by starting my own companies in different fields. One of Indonesia’s key resources is the large population and broad mixture of ethnicities, and I believe it has great potential for future business development.

After my first year at SFC, when I returned to Indonesia during the vacation I saw it with new eyes – there are so many things that Indonesia can learn from Japan in terms of attitudes and ways of managing businesses. I tried ordering a product online in Indonesia, and the experience was so different to Japan. There are no tracking numbers for deliveries, mistakes sometimes occur in addresses, and there is no system for requesting redelivery at a certain time if you are out when they attempt to deliver. When I graduate I plan to go to graduate school if I can find a scholarship in order to get a Master’s degree before working in Japan for a few years to build up my practical knowhow, and then return to Indonesia to build businesses engaging with Japanese companies.

My project focuses on IT, marketing, and e-commerce, which are all essential to build a strong, modern business in Indonesia. Indonesia is starting to develop a culture of business start-ups, but the first step is to capitalize on e-commerce opportunities, which combines all of the skills that I have learned during the first two years of my course.
The environment here is very stimulating, as many students share a vision of connecting Japan to other countries through business. There are about 15 students in my research group, with some members also working on business startups and marketing. Several students have returned from overseas study with a vision similar to mine of wanting to connect Japan to other countries through business, which is a great inspiration for me, and an opportunity for reciprocal learning. While most of the members in the group are Japanese, all of them have been on an exchange program so they are all familiar with different cultures, and have different ideas and points of view to share. At present I am particularly excited about exploring the opportunities of web site design and development for advertising, search, and marketing in order to grow a business online.

Note: Titles, affiliations, student years, etc. indicated for individuals are accurate at the time of January 2015.