30 Groups Who Own Jakarta Nightlife

By Tibs
You would be surprised to know that 90% of Jakarta's main clubs, bars, spas and karaokes are in the hands of less than 50 persons and only about 30 groups.

It is quite difficult to know precisely who owns what because there are usually several partners in each business venture. This is a way to minimize the investment cost, to spread the risks and to help with the promotion. Each of the owners brings his network of friends, family, strategic connections and partners to support the business and to make it grow. Within the same group, it is also not uncommon to have several companies (PT) with different shareholders each. 

Another difficulty is that the real owners are sometimes hidden behind a nominee. This is especially true when the venue is reputed for hosting illegal activities such as drugs, prostitution or gambling. The best illustration for that is Tommy Winata who has the particularly of being a nominee who uses other nominees: He owns stakes in multiple companies without having his name mentioned and he owns stakes in companies on behalf of other people too. 

In spite of that, after very long hours of research and enquiries, I managed to get a fairly good picture of the people who own the largest and most famous clubs, bars and restaurants in Jakarta.

My first surprise was to see that the whole industry is dominated by about 30 big groups that can be split into a few categories:

  • The Underground Nightlife Kings: The owners of the infamous nightclubs and bars in North and West Jakarta, usually with strong ties to the Suharto regime.
  • The Post-Suharto Golden Generation: OPCO, Ismaya, Union Group, Potato Head, the owners of these trendy groups, started in the 2000s, are usually young people under 40, sons and daughters from wealthy Indochinese families who studied in the US/Australia. 
  • The Foreigners: An odd bunch, usually behind smaller pubs and bars with a majority of expat clients. Though foreigners are rarely owners, a lot of them work as Chefs or General Managers.
  • The Corporations: Some huge conglomerates own restaurants and bars. MRA, the owner of Hard Rock Café, MAP, the Salim Group, etc.
  • The New Generation and Smaller Groups: Groups that emerged in the late 2000 (All-In, Biko, Immigrant, Ryst).

Note: The list below is probably incomplete and there may be some errors. If you have better information, please take the time to write about it in the comment section below. 

The Underground Nightlife Kings
Alexis Group
Alexis Hotel, Play Club, Zen, Club 36, Emporium, Colosseum and 1001, Tease Club
Officially owned by Alex Tirta and managed with his son. There isn't much information available about them apart that they are badminton fans. A source working at Diageo Indonesia (PT Dima) told me that the Alexis Group is their biggest client and that Mr. Tirta could be one of their shareholders.
According to a plausible rumor, there are more than one owner in Alexis. Some names that circulate are Aliang or Rudi Widjaja.

Stadium Group
Stadium (closed), Malioboro, Malio Club, Sumo, Nebula, King Cross, Level V, Exodus, Kampus (closed), Rajamas (closed)
Rudi Susanto (also called Rudi Rajamas) is the official owner of the Stadium Group. He is the face that the employees can see and they call him Pak Rudi.  Most likely, he is only the visible part of the business and much bigger fishes are hiding behind this name.

In a study of Jakarta's sex industry written in 2005 (available here), John MacDougall, a graduate from Harvard University writes the following: 

"Rudi Rajamas controls the most lucrative sex industry venues while Apow focuses largely on gambling.  Both of these men are subordinate to Tommy Winata, a man with tremendous authority in Jakarta’s entertainment establishments and districts."

If you speak Indonesian, you could also read the following report from Tempo about the Gang of the 9 Dragons which controls drugs, prostitution, gambling, and all mafia activities in Jakarta:"Isi Perut 'Geng Sembilan", May 31st, 1999.

The legend that circulated for years about the Stadium was that it belonged to a General in the Indonesian army who was previously a boss at Pertamina. The only person to fit the description would have been Ibnu Sutowo but he died a few years before the Stadium opened. Still, you will see below that the Sutowo clan has a link to Classic Hotel Group, which is linked to several Gang of Nine figures. The son of Ibnu Sutowo, Adiguna Sutowo, is worth mentioning. He is a convicted criminal who shot to death a waiter of a club he owned (Fluid in Sultan Hotel, ex-Hilton, see here). 

Supra Group
Millenium (closed), Mille's, Sun City, Sands Hotel & Spa (closed), Batavia Hotel (closed)
Possible owners: Tommy Winata? Arief Cocong? Cahyadi dan Haryadi Kumala? Rudi Susanto? More likely all of them.
The Supra Group is very mysterious and I am not sure it still exists. On their website, they claim to be the owners of several business entities, among which a bank, an internet provider, etc... 
It seems they have been divesting and that their properties have changed owners: Batavia Hotel has changed its name into De Rivier Hotel, Sands was sold to Agung Podomoro Land and changed its name to Sense Spa, Millenium was closed. A friend also told me that Sun City and Mille's are independently owned now.

For Sun City, he confirmed that it is headed by Arief Cocong, an associate of Tommy Winata and a Gang of Nine member.

One interesting thing was to browse the list of the few companies the server of Supra Group is hosting. It comprises KFC Indonesia (Gelael Group, close to Suharto), the Kartika Chandra Hotel (Sudwikatmono from Andika Group, a member of the Suharto family) and the Grand Ancol Hotel which is the previous name for Alexis Hotel.

One certainty regarding Millenium Club is that it was founded by Cahyadi and Haryadi Kumala, who are also the owners of Sentul City and the Golden Boutique Hotels. In the latest news, they were imprisoned by the KPK in a corruption case (see here).

There is a possible link between the Kumala brothers and the Gang of Nine: Millenium was located in Gadja Mada Plaza, owned by Artha Buana Sakti which belonged to Tommy Winata. In a 2006 interview with Tempo, he declared that 6 floors of the Mall were given to his Bank Artha Graha Prima to pay back debt from Bank Harapan Sentosa. Gadja Mada was then sold to the Lippo Group in 2007. The following article from Tempo also links the Kumalas to the Gang Of Nine (see here)

Artha Graha Group
Tommy Winata and friends in 2013 (photo: KanalSatu)
Huge conglomerate of Tommy Winata (TW)
Tommy Winata and his family may have shares or interests in several venues, but it is almost impossible to say which ones with certainty. Through Graha Artha, he controls Borobudur hotel and therefore Manhattan Club and Musro Club. He was also the owner of the Bengkel Entertainment Complex so it is very likely that he has shares in Lucy in the Sky and Roxy Karaoke which replaced it. I have also heard that Sands belonged to him (thus linking him to the Supra Group above). Through his son Panji, he owns Discovery Sky in Ancol. I have heard repeatedly that he was the owner of Golden Crown and the Plaza Hotel Glodok, but a source working there told me the owner is a man named Johny Tan.

Regarding other properties, all we can see are his links with other people such as Arief Cocong, Rudi Susanto, Sugento Prananto or the Supra Group (through Sands). Those links have been detailed in several articles such as this one from the Indonesian Corruption Watch.

A theory is that TW is a nominee himself and acts for even more powerful people, people who were once in the inner circle of the late President Suharto. According to Dr. George J. Aditjondro (read here), the drug traffic in Jakarta was in the hands of the grandson of Suharto Ari Haryo Wibowo, also known as Ari Sigit. He could possibly be behind Tommy Winata as well. 

Something interesting to note is that the Lamborghini Club Indonesia often meets in places supposedly owned by Tommy Winata such as Lucy in the Sky or Ritz Carlton Pacific Place. It turns out that is that a former owner of the Lamborghini company was Tommy Suharto until he sold it after the Asian Crisis.

Classic Group
Classic Hotel & Spa, Terminal 2 and 5, Travel Hotel, FM1, FM7, AJ Brandon
I was not able to confirm the ownership of this group which comprises 3 of the largest bordellos in Jakarta. Ponco Sutowo is a potential candidate. He is the brother of Adiguna Sutowo (see my note about Stadium), son of Ibnu Sutowo, and owner of several hotels in Indonesia including the Sultan Hotel in Jakarta and the Ayodya Hotel in Bali. As with his other family members, he has very close ties with the Suharto family.
As advertised on their website, Pulau Ayer Resort is part of the Classic group. Several sources indicate that Ayer Island belongs to Ponco Sutowo (Click here, from the personal webpage of John MacDougall, cited above, or here, from the Jakarta Post).

If he is the owner of Pulau Ayer, chances are he is the owner of the Ayer Resort also, and thus the owner of the Classic Group.

Another thing I noted was that there is a restaurant named AJ Brandon in all of the group's location. AJ could mean "Adhi Juno", the name of the daughter of Ponco. It is a very Indonesian thing to do to name businesses after the initials of family members. 

According to PolitikIndonesia.com and several other sources (here), more people are involved in the Pulau Ayer Resort which used to be a gambling island. Some names that come up are all members of the Gang of Nine such as Sugento Prananto, Arief "Cocong" Prihatna and Edi 'Porkas" Winata, all of whom are close to Tommy Winata.

Unnamed Group
Illigals, Sparks Hotel
Iwan Tjahyadikarta, the owner of Alila Hotel Pecenongan, was said to be one of the shareholders of these properties (he passed away in 2017). His sons Donny and Budiman are possibly the ones managing them.

Iwan Tjahyadikarta (Eng Thiong in Chinese), considered one of the 9 Dragons, was a business associate of Tomy Winata in Mal Artha Gading and Sumber Auto Graha (in the 1980s).

The Post Suharto Golden Generation

Ismaya Group
Dragonfly, Blowfish, SKYE, Social House, Publik Markette, Pizza e Birra, Fook Yew, The People's Café, Colette and Lola, Magnum Café, Pasta de Waraku, Sushi Groove, Tokyo Belly, Puro, Djournal Coffee, Djakarta Warehouse Project, Ismaya Live
Bram Hendrata, Christian Rijanto dan Brian Sutanto are the three co-owners and co-founders of Ismaya, probably the most famous and largest F&B group in Indonesia. Some sources mention other investors such as Rudy Widjaja.

Domain, Portico, Yellowfin, Koffie Warung Tinggi, Stark Beer, H5, Urbanite Asia, Manna Lounge (closed), Public (closed), Embassy/Wonder Bar/Balcony (closed)
OPCO was founded by Reeza Budhisurya and Yudha Budhisurya who also participated in the opening of Cork & Screw (Union Group) and Score!. Bona and Rama Budhisurya, from the same family, joined later.
Other investors and co-founders of OPCO include Andrew Santoso (also involved in Union Group, Lifestyle Unlimited Group and other ventures: Circa, Mangkok Putih, Single Malt Bali, Meja Bali, Urban Kitchen).
Some venues have partners like Angel Widjaja in Warung Koffie Tinggi.

Union Group
Union, Loewy, Cork & Screw, Caffè Milano, Canteen, Casa, Union Deli, E&O
Owners: Jennifer Karjadi, the most visible face in the group; Andrew Santoso (Also in Opco and Lifestyle Unlimited); Winfred Hutabarat (Yale Graduate, also co-founder of Aksara with Arini Subianto and Laksmi Pamuntjak who seems to have shares in Canteen as well); Donny Basuki; Michael Wijono, Dani Wanandi (also the owner of Jaddi Group, see below).
Will Meyrick, the owner of Mamasan and Sarong restaurants in Bali, is a partner in E&O.

Potato Head Group
Potato Head Garage, Potato Head Pacific Place, Potato Head Beach Club and hotels Bali, Three Buns Burgers, Potato Head Folk Singapore
Owners: Ronald Akili and Jason Gunawan

Red Square Group 
Red Square (closed), Hacienda, Black Cat, The Boutique KTV
Owners: Rachmat Harsono (also part owner of X2), Agus Handojo, Hari Setiawan, Surya Iskandar, Andri Budiono with a foreign management: Paul Counihan (ex Jalan Jalan who also worked on X2), Eddie Cordisco, Yos Malelak. Most likely, it is the same team who developed Prohibition Bar in Senayan Arcadia as well.

Urban Concepts Indonesia and Lifestyle Unlimited
X2, Alibi (closed), Vertigo/X-Lounge (Closed), JackRabbit (closed), X-Ktv, Ippachi, Tokio Kitchen, Urban Kanteen, Yogu, Shabu Tei
Owners: Danny Setiawan (with Andrew Santoso); Rachmat Harsono (Family of owners of Samator, one of the largest producer of gas in Indonesia)

Jaddi Group
Vin+ (Kemang, Senayan Arcadia, Central Park, PIM, Seminyak), South Beauty, AW Kitchen, D’ Crepes, Mix Grill and also Cork & Screw.
Owners: Children of Jusuf Winandi, the brother of Sofyan Winandi (owner of Santini Group): Doni Wanandi, Dani Wanandi, Feller Lokanata and Lowrenz Tanuwijaja. Also shareholders are Reimer Simorangkir, Yolanda Simorangkir and possibly Hermansyah Rasyid.

Boga Group
Bakerzin, Pepper Lunch, Sushi Tei, Sushi Kiosk, Rakuzen, Ten Ten, Paradise Dynasty, Master Wok, Canton Paradise, Paradise Inn
Founded in 2002, the Boga group is more into restaurants than nightlife but its owners, Kusnadi Rahardja, David Soong, and Sonny Kurniawan, are linked to the above venues.

Syah Establishments
I recently heard of this group which is managed by Felly Imransyah. On its website, it says that it owns Lucy in The Sky, Bauhaus, and Sofia at the Gunawarman. Felly Imransyah is a close friend of the famous businessman Erick Thohir. The son of Astra founder, he used to be President of Inter Milan and he has shares in ANTV/TV ONE. He probably owns shares in the group as well.
Felly Imranshyah (right) with Erick Thohir
The Foreign groups
Mount Scopus
Venues: Negev, Balboni, Chateau Blanc, Amber Sky Lounge, The Harvest Bakery
Owner: Australian-Sri Lankan Lal De Silva is the founder and owner of Mount Scopus, one of the most successful foreign-owned F&B companies in Indonesia.

Bugils Group
Eastern Promise, De Burse, De Hooi, Double Doors, One Tree Bar (Closed), Bugils (Closed)
Owner: Dutchman Bartele Santema with some other mysterious shareholders.

PT IndoErin
Venues: Murphy's Pub and Molly Malone's Pub
Owners: Irishman Killian Murphy and his Indonesian wife Irene Alaydrus Hawadi Murphy

The Aphrodite Group
Aphrodite, Fez, Kinara, Liquid Exchange 
Owner: Fred Alloysius, a Singaporean-Indian.

Blok M Bars
Mostly developed by a few expats with the help of local partners / premans (the most famous Karno). Daryl Patton, who passed away in 2011, seems to be the main figure as he was behind Tambora (closed), D's Club (Daryl's Pub), and Top Gun. The main shareholder of D's Place now is a British national named Carl.

Regarding MyBar, Hitesh Darbar a British expat used to be the owner but that may have changed.

The Smaller and Upcoming Groups
Baresto Mitra Maju
Immigrant, Rustique, Bistro Garçon, Monolog, De Luca, Olive 
Owner: Chris Darjanto and his father. Other possible shareholders Franky Angkawijaya, Evie Karsoho and Fany Hermawan

Svarna Group
Ocha & Bella, Moovina, Dream
Owners: Vincent and Villysia Sianandar, possibly with other investors.

RYST Group
Publico, Empirica, PB PIK, Baker's Gallery Kota Kasablanka, Savoi Ultra Lounge
Owner: Agung Wahyu Nugroho

Beer Garden Kemang, Menteng, SCBD, Radio Dalam
Owner: Mikael Mirdad

Odysseia, Fable, Mirrors Bali, Gardin, Ringmaster Bakery and Donut
Owners: Officially Jason Kurniawan, his friend Feisal Hamka, and Adinda Kuntadi. Due to the young age owners, it is very likely that they benefited from strong connections and money.

Feisal Hamka comes from a reputed Indonesian family and his father is close to Siti Hardijanti Rukmana, the eldest daughter of Suharto also called Mbak Tutut. The daughter of Mbak Tutut and Feisal were both directors of the publicly listed company PT Citra Marga Nusaphala Persada Tbk, the operator of several highways in Indonesia including the Jakarta Inner Ring Road.

Fable is located in ex-Bengkel which presumably belongs to Tommy Winata. The Lamborghini Indonesia Club mentioned above had several parties there. Odysseia is built in a prime location, the same as Paul for which I heard that MAP had to negotiate for several months as the owner of Pacific Place (Tommy Winata through Tan Kian) wanted to keep it for himself (MAP is the owner of Galleries Lafayette and the first client of Pacific Place).

Nu China
Several owners, one of which is named Novarmi Bakti Massewa. She filed a complaint against the founder of Indoclubber Jack Lapian in 2010 after she was late to pay him his DJ fees. She might be from the same family as Fit Aidil Massewa who was the GM of The Venue in Kemang as well.

Jack Lapian seems to have been involved in several other venues such as V2, X9 club, and B1.

The Venue, Tipsy, SHY Rooftop, and FKTV are under the name of local celebrity Maia Estianty, the ex-wife of Ahmad Dhani. She probably has other investors. She is linked to Bambang Nuryatno Rachmadi (ex-owner of the McDonald's franchise) and was introduced to Tommy Winata by her ex-husband.

The Corporations and the Franchisers
MRA Group
Hard Rock Café, Cloud Lounge, McDonald's
Owner: MRA Group or PT Mugi Rekso Abasi, founded by Adiguna Sutowo in 1985, along with some friends of him including Tommy Suharto, Soetikno Soedardjo, Dian M Soedardjo and Onky Soemarmo. Adiguna Sutowo, as mentioned above is the son of Ibnu Sutowo who could be linked to Stadium Group and Classic Hotel (See above for more details).

More about Adiguna here: Adiguna, Spoilt Brat of Famed Tycoon.

MAP (Mitra Adi Perkasa)
Paul, Starbucks, Cold Stone, Chatterbox, Pizza Express, Cold Stone, Burger King, Domino's 
Owned by Syamsul Nursalim, the owner of Gajah Tunggal, through Boyke Gozali his nephew.
A corporation within a corporation, MAP is a serial franchiser. They never create concepts, they just import to Indonesia businesses and brands that are popular elsewhere.

PT Makindo (Gula Gulaku)
JJ Royal Bistro, JJ Royal Brasserie, Sugar Gallery
Owner: Gunawan Yusuf
The JJ restaurants are most likely an amusement for some family members of the Makindo group, one of the largest conglomerates in Indonesia with strong ties to the Suharto regime.

Otel Lobby, Bluegrass, WWWok (closed), Magenta (closed), Twilight Coffee (closed)
Owner: Gaby Bakrie
Probably more a toy for a wealthy heiress than a real business.

Shangri-La Jakarta
Shangri La Hotel Jakarta and therefore BATS is owned by the Salim Group of Anthony Salim (Indomie among many others). Other investors are the Lyman Group (Osbert Lyman) and most likely the Kerry Group of Chinese billionaire Robert Kuok.

Hotel Mulia Jakarta
Owner: The Mulia Group was founded by Tjandra Kusuma and his sons Gunawan Tjandra (Tjan Kok Kwang), Djoko S. Tjandra, Eka Tjandranegara, and Ekman Tjandranegara . Djoko Tjandra is currently hiding in Papua New Guinea to avoid prison time in Indonesia after he was sentenced for embezzling over 50M USD.

I was told by a reliable source that the ex-president of Indonesia SBY could have shares in Mulia. This source has been working for PT Sandua Jaya International, the holding company of Edhie Baskoro the son of SBY.
Conclusion: Gathering information to write this article was very difficult. If you think I made a mistake or a wrong conclusion, please write a comment below so I can make sure I correct it.

Photo credit: I took some pictures from the Facebook page of the venues listed, if that poses a problem to someone, just let me know and I'll just take them down. 

22 comments to '' 30 Groups Who Own Jakarta Nightlife "

  1. For JJ Royal, you may talk to Eric G. the GM of the group, you could get more information as I am not sure the one mentioned in the article are 100% accurate.

    Nevertheless it was a really interesting article, congratulations for the investigation work. It would be great to have a schema, with the faces of the different actors and the link between them. It would greatly facilitate the comprehension. Cheers.

  2. A very interesting article indeed and I will follow with interest.

  3. "Djoko Tjandra is currently hiding in Papua New Guinea to avoid prison time in Indonesia"

    Haha he can sometimes be seen at the Mulia Hotel near the offices of Kompas Gramedia. He is not scared of being arrested. He has purchased himself PNG citizenship - and Indonesian authorities do not seem to want to arrest him.

  4. Hi Thibaud, regarding the Army General who possibly owns Stadium and Malioboro, I have once heard that it could be General Wiranto... I don't have any proof but that's just the gossip...

  5. Anyone has an idea who Delta spa (Puri Group) belongs to?

    1. Delta (puri group) belongs to three brothers (atong,simon&hendrik prasetya)

  6. Could you make an article about which club in Jakarta get more revenue than other club?

    1. I wish I could but it is impossible considering the secrecy of club owners... The only way would be to find an accountant who's worked for those groups...

  7. Anyone has an idea who crown and sydney 2000 belongs to?

    1. A friend working in Crown told me it was a man named Johnny Tan... but I could not find any information about this guy... For Sydney 2000, I also was not able to find any information...

  8. Supra sounds like Suharto Putra (Hutomo Mandala Putra) which is Tommy Suharto

  9. McDonald's is own by SOSRO group

  10. Fortune Group is owned by a named named Pak Sudin

  11. So, no Yakuza involved eh? Bummer. Good information there, nevertheless.

  12. The group who owns Stadium, Exodus, Malioboro, Classic, FM1, etc has many shareholders... Among them you will also find Gunawan Foronkid and Haston Limardo families.

  13. This man has a serious deal. I wish we could meet sometimes (: ipaddr

  14. Owner of Shangrila hotel are BNI (largest share), Lyman Group and Kuok Group (Shangrila International). Never heard of Salim Group involved.

  15. How about Kimochi? Who own this group? I believe they manage 6-8 spa/massage parlours.

  16. This is very interesting to read..... cant imagine how much time you have invested just to write this article... thanks so much for sharing ! keep up the good work

  17. All-In is lead by Adinda Kuntadi, not Jason. Jason is more like co-owner, it is Adinda who initiates and set up the whole operations.

  18. Christian Rijanto is a member of the kotjo family!