Thursday, 16 August, 2012 | 15:32 WIB
Kiki Barki’s Coal Saga: The Tanito Group and the Harum Energy Group
TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta:The name of Kiki Barki appeared in the Forbes magazine March 2012 edition on the list of the 764 richest people in the world. In Indonesia, he is one of the ten richest people. At the age of 72, by March 2012, this father of four owned assets worth US$ 1.7 billion or about Rp 16 trillion.
The money mine for Kiki has been the coal business. However, he also owns PT Layar Lintas Jaya, which is active in the shipping business. Kiki has shares indirectly in PT Lotus Coalindo Marine, which owns and operates a number of floating cranes and also, Harum Energy Australia Limited and Harum Energy Capital Limited.
According to Ray Antonio Gunara, Director of PT Harum Energy Limited, this company focuses its attention on the short and medium term coal business. Far into the future, there is the possibility of expanding into oil and gas, or perhaps in the downstream direction such as a power station at the mouth of a mine. Until today, says Ray, his company regards their coal product which is on average 5,500 calories to be better suited for export compared to being developed or connected with a power plant.
Even though the world market is still weak due to the global crisis, Ray is optimistic that demand from the markets of China and India will continue to grow. This is not yet counting the potential of developing nations such as Vietnam, Myanmar, including Indonesia.
The decline in the price of coal at this time, in Ray’s eyes, is more a reflection of the ordinary cycle of a commodity. When the market is flooded, demand becomes sluggish, the price is held down. With the Newcastle index at about US$ 85 per ton, many coal producers, particularly in Australia, and several companies in Indonesia, are in a position only fit for the cost of production. Producers in Australia have higher base expenses than in Indonesia.
The price of Harum Energy coal averages US$ 94 per ton (per the first quarter of 2012), far above the index. The problem is that the Newcastle index of US$ 85 per ton is for a product with the calorie value of 6,300. Meaning that Harum coal with a calorie content of 5,500 fetching the price of US$ 94 is profitable. The market price should be about US$ 70. “The majority of the products we sell are through long term contracts, when the price was still high,” explained Ray.
Harum Energy is an old player in the coal business, starting with the Tanito Group established by Kiki Barki Makmur in 1988. This company held a mining concession license through a working agreement for coal companies or the second generation of PKP2B in East Kalimantan. Having been in operation for almost 30 years, when today there is no more potential for growth and reserves are dwindling.
Tanito has found a way out. Harum Energy was formed as the receptacle or the main company for new mining companies. Harum is the vehicle for Tanito Group to continue to grow in the future. Through two subsidiary companies, PT Mahakam Sumber Jaya and PT Santan Batubara, Harum produced 10 million tons of coal in 2011. It seems like a small amount compared to PT Bumi Resources Limited, which through PT Kaltim Prima Coal and PT Arutmin produces almost 60 tons of coal a year. Or, if it is put next to PT Adaro Limited, which mines 45-48 million tons of coal.
Harum Energy has the proportion of about 2.7 percent of national production which reaches 360-380 million tons. “We are still far compared to those big players.” But the company continues to chase after growth. Its target is to be one of the five biggest companies nationally, while now it is in 7th or 8th place. ****