The wealth of the family that owns Musim Mas began to explode in 1988, when they expanded their business to plantations, which is the upstream sector of the refining business.
Their decision to work on the upstream sector was because in Indonesia there were difficult times to obtain crude palm oil, or what is known as crude palm oil/CPO.
Musim Mas is also expanding its business into oil palm plantations to support downstream industries that have already been worked on.
So, indeed, what differentiates Musim Mas' business from other large palm oil groups such as Indofood, Sinar Mas Agro Resources and Technology (SMART), and Wilmar, is that their group started businesses in the downstream sector first, by running a business in the vegetable oil processing industry.
Bachtiar Karim, who is also the administrator of the Sutomo College Foundation, is known to have studied at Hwa Chong Junior College and Mechanical Engineering at the National University of Singapore.
Estimated to have a net worth of up to $4 billion, the Musim Mas group also owns the Mikie Holiday Hotel in Brastagi, North Sumatra, which was built in 2000.
This group is known to control PT Megasurya Mas which produces various soap products, such as Harmony, Medicare, Lervia, Lark and Champion.
As well as having one of the largest palm oil refining networks in the world and being a major player in the soap and vegetable oil refining industries in Indonesia, Musim Mas also has a network of tank installations at major ports in various countries, including Indonesia.
This conglomerate group even operates in 13 countries in Asia Pacific, Europe and the United States and has around 37,000 employees.
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