Keiji Saito : Bringing Japan to Indonesia through Property

Story By
Randy Mulyanto

Tokyu Land Indonesia aims to showcase the Japanese lifestyle through condominiums in Indonesia. Keiji Saito, its president director, shared his thoughts regarding Japanese-styled residences in the Indonesian market with Inclover.

I : Tokyu Land Indonesia was recognized as being one of the top ten property developers at the BCI Asia Top 10 Awards this year. How did Tokyu Land Indonesia formulate a plan to enter the Indonesian market and withstand the competition from other property developers?

K : By combining our know-how that we have cultivated in Japan and our knowledge and experience accumulated over the past 40 years in Indonesia, we have created business policies around not only investment but also the implementation of leading and managing the project ourselves. This is through the whole sequence of real estate business from development, sales, and property management.

Although the history of urban development business for Tokyu Land Indonesia has just begun in Indonesia, we feel our commitment and involvement is shown by leading the project with our own hands and in providing Japanese quality products.

IWhat made you attracted to the property industry? Why Indonesia?

K : In Indonesia, we established our roots and continued our business focusing on the development of landed houses. Indonesia is undergoing remarkable development and is moving toward future urbanization. It is one of the countries that has drawn incredible attention in the Southeast Asia region. With our experiences in Japan and Indonesia, we see it as an opportunity to contribute to the development of the cities, to the people of Indonesia.

I : How do you see the current Indonesian property market? In which direction is it heading?

KIn Indonesia, especially in Jakarta, urbanization has developed rapidly. In the near future, the transportation infrastructure such as MRT, LRT, etc. will come into operation. We aim to provide developments with quality and sustainability, as we believe that property management has become one of the key factors in managing and growing the asset values in Indonesia.

I : Tell us more about BRANZ BSD—one of your projects—as a brand. What is the Japanese nuance in BRANZ?

K : Tokyu Land Corporation’s condominium brand “BRANZ” is a nationwide development in Japan, including prestige areas such as Shibuya and Roppongi, Tokyo. Each of the initials of BRANZ has the following thoughts:

B is Bloom (every day, every minute bloom with the joy of life); R is Revolute (an innovation that will revolutionize every day); A for Achieve (here is a place where you can achieve all that life can offer); N means Neologize (daily discovery of a new value); Z for Ultimate (last letter of alphabet as your stairway to the ultimate in living).

I : What could drive people’s demand for owning a Japanese-styled residence, such as Tokyu Land Indonesia’s BRANZ apartment?

K : I feel that Indonesian people are hoping for high expectations in quality. We are actively working to achieve high quality by using Japanese construction companies along with high-performance and high quality products from Japanese manufacturers.

In particular, BRANZ BSD prioritizes eco-friendliness and safety for the residents. With the adoption of Japanese technologies and products like HEMS (visualization of electricity and water usage), Low-E Glass, LED lighting, and drinkable tap water, etc., these correspond to the Indonesian climate and nature. So in association with the NIKKEN SEKKEI group incorporated in Japan, we aim to provide a “Smart City Residence”.

I : BRANZ BSD is offering more than 3,000 units and is located in Bumi Serpong Damai, South Tangerang. What do you think of Bumi Serpong Damai’s potential in Asia?

K : The BSD City development has an excellent living environment, good access, rapid development, and the area potential is rated as the best in the surrounding area of Jakarta.

BSD has lush greenery and progressing eco-friendly towns that are accessible in about 30 minutes by highway from the center of Jakarta. These factors make it one of the most attractive areas in the Jakarta metropolitan area.

I : What future projects do you have in mind?

K : Our aim is to expand and grow a sustainable business in Indonesia where we aim to develop one project per year so we cannot identify anything yet but we hope to announce projects in the near future.

I :  What is the approach that you bring to lead the talents at Tokyu Land Indonesia? Is it different compared to your experience in Japan?

K : My approach as the president director is to respect the employee’s autonomy. It is difficult to enhance the capability only by the given tasks so it is important for the employees to pursue and think through methods that will get even better results. This point is as essential in Indonesia as it is in Japan.

I : Regarding your work, what principles or values do you believe in? Do you consider them to be a reason behind where you are now?

K : It is a difficult task to have other people understand your point of view or theory. If the theory is good, it may take time, but I believe that in the end it will be understood. Maybe I will understand as I proceed with my work in Indonesia. 

            Note: The interview has been edited for length and clarity.