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John Kurniawan Young

John Kurniawan Young

A sense of duty made John Kurniawan Young return to Indonesia to help run Pakerin, his family’s business. Based in Surabaya, Pakerin is a leading manufacturer of industrial paper. As Deputy Director, Young’s responsibilities include taking charge of internal and external project management.

He gained a Bachelor of Commerce degree with honours from Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia in Canada in 2008 and an MBA from F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College in the United States in 2011. “I studied in North America, but my roots are in Indonesia and I felt responsible for my family business,” says Young. “My grandfather, the founder of the business, prepared and trusted me to continue and grow the business. I made a promise to fulfill his wish and I intend to keep it. As the third generation entering the company, I understand that I should not only grow my family business but also establish new business ventures. A family business that survives through generations has to expand and diversify. Therefore, choosing the entrepreneurial path is not just a choice, but a must.

“Someone once told me that a regular student from an Indonesian high school wouldn’t be able to enter one of the world’s top universities. That statement was proven wrong when I entered one of the best universities in Canada and then in the United States, and was even able to start a new business venture there. I repeated the process of breaking limits over and over again in my venture. I realised there was no limit to what we can do if we put our mind to it and do it, one step at a time.”


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