Aware of Indonesia’s huge potential, Fanda Soesilo established a company that incubates Indonesian creative ideas into a sustainable business.
“There are so many talented and highly creative people in the archipelago. A lot of them have invented new products or something innovative that can bring positive changes in communities. But they have no clue on how to market the products they have invented,” Fanda remarks.
Seeing such unfavorable condition urged Fando to start up a private incubator that bridges inventors and investors to form new companies. Aiming to see a better future of Indonesian creative people, she started running Maetrika, the brand name of PT Emanur Pelangi Indonusa Indonesia, in August 2009.
Many investors are so keen on adopting a business concept or invention from abroad. And they even buy the license in order to realize their dream of having a reputable company. “I see that a significant number of these investors are not motivated to explore what our country has to offer. It’s an ironic fact, indeed,” she expresses her concern.
Fanda, who is the CEO and president director of Maetrika, asserts that there is a great potential for the making of new entrepreneurs throughout the country. Having a population of 240 million, Indonesia is blessed with abundant natural and human resources. This is not to mention the country’s US$ 550 billion gross domestic product (GDP) in 2009, which has positioned Indonesia as Asia’s third fast economic growth and Southeast Asia’s largest economy.
Maetrika has correspondingly been taking advantages of such condition which is conducive to the business. “Nevertheless, Indonesia has yet to fully apply the true meaning of Intellectual Property (IP) despite the country’s positive economic growth.”
Inventors must be granted certain exclusive rights to any types of their inventions such as those in artistic works and designs. It is important that their rights be protected with any types of intellectual property such as copyrights, trademarks and patents.
“For that reason, we are implementing a business concept that facilitates inventors seeking investors to market their inventions. We help investors run and develop their companies, while inventors are entitled to the equity share. It’s a win-win solution,” Fanda explains.
She furthermore mentions that there is a mission behind the establishment of Maetrika, which is providing value to stakeholders who can contribute to the Indonesian economy. She adds that one crucial benefit of using Maetrika’s services is the issuance of a legal guarantee for original Indonesian creations. “Innovations in Indonesia are often patented by foreign companies. The presence of Maetrika is to legally secure original Indonesian creations,” she adds.
Maetrika has also spread its wings into digital media marketing sector with the development of two new start-ups: Beomee , a service provider featuring “interaction made simple” on instant messaging, and Belibu, a service provider for online classified ads.
Born in Surabaya on December 16, 1971, Fanda earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering and materials science and engineering from the University of California at Berkeley in 1995. Upon completing her degree, she worked at Lam Research Corporation in Fremont, California from 1995 to 2005, respectively holding posts of senior process engineer, customer technology manager and senior product manager.
Fanda returned to Indonesia in 2005. Prior to setting up Maetrika, she held various esteemed posts at a number of companies such as PT Asia Towers International and PT Smart Telecom Indonesia. During her stints, she was becoming more aware of many opportunities Indonesia has to offer, particularly in the fields of finance and human resources. She felt that the two fields could give a significant contribution to the country’s economic development. She also discovered that there were many talented creative individuals with innovative ideas, who could potentially contribute to a sustainable business.
Her sophisticated and outgoing personality reflects a cosmopolitan character of a big city career woman. But Fanda actually likes being surrounded by nature. “I love traveling. And whenever I do so, nature vacation is what I treasure the most, with diving as always a fun activity. People and culture are also what make me get on the plane headed to a travel destination.”
Flores, Bali and Surabaya are her three most favorite travel destinations. “Bali is a great place for nature and culture. I’m always mesmerized with the charm of Balinese folks. Surabaya is my hometown and it is where my family and relatives are. But Flores is something else. The people, the culture and the nature are uniquely one-of-a-kind,” Fanda says while gesturing excitingly.
Amidst her busy daily routine, Fanda always holds the belief that taking some time off is a healthy escape from the workday hustle and bustle. Playing golf, watching movies and cooking are activities she likes doing at her leisure.
“I like spending my time in the kitchen cooking various dishes. But I don’t cook with recipe. I create something out of whatever I have in my refrigerator. I love my own creation,” she says.
Fanda’s own cooking creation is likely to be a reflection of her innovative attitude. But the truth is that the get-up-and-go Fanda is a visionary when it comes to innovating her ideas, and implementing the ideas into the birth of a new business concept potential to bring Indonesia to the next level.
By Aulia R Sungkar. Published in HighEnd, October 2010.