Meet The Richest Person In Indonesia: Hartono Brothers Making It Big Since 2008

September 20, 2023
3 mins read
richest person in Indonesia
The Hartono Brothers

Indonesia is a very small country. But with the increasing prices of their exportable commodities, their economy grows daily. A single person does not acquire the title of the richest person in Indonesia. Instead, there are two people, more importantly, two brothers. The Hartono brothers- Budi Hartono and Michael Hartono, are the richest people in Indonesia as per reports of August 2023.

In Indonesia, people are often tagged as crazy rich when they try to portray their wealth through their social media or the cars they drive, the clothes they wear, and whatever luxury they own. But if we focus on the Hartono brothers, they have never indulged in showing off their wealth to the world. Instead, they have been simple people, concentrated on their work, and held the title since 2008. 

The Hartono brothers are in their early 80s now, but they are actively participating in making their company run smoothly. Let’s look better at these Indonesian billionaires’ lives and different aspects.

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Early life of the Hartono brothers

The Hartono brothers are of Chinese-Indonesian origin. Over the years, they have worked in acquiring some of the best companies, which has helped them gain the title of Richest Men in Indonesia five times in a row. 

richest people in Indonesia
Djarum Cigarettes

Their primary source of earnings is their cigarette firm, Djarum, which produces clove cigarettes, and this serves as the world’s third-largest market for cigarettes. 

Not only this, but the two brothers also have shares at the largest bank in Indonesia, Banks Central Asia, which was earlier under the control of another billionaire, Liem Sioe Liong.

But the cigarette brand Djarum stands to be their best source of income. It was initially a small business started by their father, Oei Wie Gwan, and was later inherited by the brothers. Initially, the brand was remotely local, but Oei Wie Gwan knew the marketing tactics well and helped his brand reach greater heights. Unfortunately, his cigarette factory once caught fire, which would have had devastating effects. But fortunately enough, much didn’t happen. After this, Djarum also came to the export market and was sent abroad. 

The brothers inherited the company when their father passed away. But soon after that, the factory again faced a fire, and this time, the effect wasn’t as subtle as the last one. They faced a hard blow, but soon after, they regained the pace and turned it into a money-minting giant for the Hartonos. 

The net worth of the richest person in Indonesia

Richest people in Indonesia
Michael Hartono

The Hartono brothers stand at a net worth of $21B as of August 2023. 

They produce around 14% of cigarettes in the Indonesian tobacco market. Except for that, they are stakeholders at the Banks Central Asia. They are the top shareholders, and the bank generated $5.9B in revenue in 2022.

Also Read: India’s Billionaire is the definition of wealth: Ambani stands at $95.5B

Hartono brothers and their stakes 

Richest people in Indonesia
Budi Hartono

The roots of the Hartono brothers’ wealth lie with their clove cigarettes. Djarum, as already mentioned, was started by their father, and by maintaining the quality of their product as well as establishing excellent export relations with other countries, Djarum has become quite a brand now. 

Presently, the brothers are involved in the cigarette business, but now, because of their age, it is majorly handled by Budi’s son, Victor Hartono. 

Except for their cigarette firm, they have investments in the Banks in Central Asia. When the  Liong family lost control over the bank, the Hartonos jumped in for the impossible-to-neglect opportunity. 

Except for these, the Hartono brothers also have stakes in the famous electronic brand Polytron. Their wealth also includes investments from the prime real estate in Jakarta. 

In 2022, the Hartono brothers were the second largest IPO when their e-commerce platform, Bibli, raised $510 million. 

Lifestyle led by the richest people in Indonesia

Richest people in Indonesia
Banks Central Asia

The world is still determining much about the lifestyle and family of the Hartono brothers. Even though they have been on the list of the richest people in the world for quite some time now, they like to keep their lives private. 

Both the brothers live with their families separately in the city of Kudus in Indonesia. They do not show off wealth through their places of abode. Instead, they stay in humble residencies with their families. Also, the placement of their houses is done so that both remain close to their offices, banks, factories and all their other business ventures.

The Hartono brothers have been married once and still reside with their spouses. Budi Hartono has three children, and Robert Hartono has four. Much about the lives of their spouses and children is also unknown to the world. Indonesians are, in general, humble and subtle people who do not like to interfere or interfere in their personal lives. Hence explaining the lack of information about the family life and the overall lifestyle of the richest people of Indonesia.

Final Thoughts

So, this was all about the richest people of Indonesia, the Hartono brothers. Their net worth has been on the rise ever since they debuted in the list of the richest people in the world. With 2023 reports kicking in, the number of years that they have been holding this title has lost its count. Only if, like other billionaires of the world, we could get to know a little more about their lives and construct ours from such imaginations and ideas. 

Also read: Meet the Chinese packaged water manufacturing billionaire turned the richest man of the country

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