Our 5Cs Business Philosophy

Doing what's good for our...


Apical is guided by Sukanto Tanoto’s 5C’s business philosophy of doing what is good for the Community, Country, Climate, and Customer, and only then will they be good for the Company. We also place emphasis on the three pillars of ESG – environmental, social, and governance.

We are committed to play our role as a responsible global corporate citizen and are therefore committed to supporting the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), introduced in 2015 as a common framework for governments, businesses and society to build a better world by 2030.

Apical ensures all activities are aligned with our 5C’s business philosophy, UN SDGs and ESG pillars. We identified six UN SDGs, which are segmented into core and catalytic goals, where we are able to support, progress and make a positive impact.

Core goals are those that have the strongest alignment with Apical’s operations and sustainability commitments while catalytic goals are those which Apical sees as an opportunity to support the communities where we operate.


At Apical Group, our commitment to sustainability stems right from the top. Apical’s President is supported by the Executive Director, Director of Sustainability and various business heads to ensure sustainability is integrated into various roles within business and functional units, and embedded in the company’s core values and initiatives.

Sustainability topics are discussed at Board meetings held twice a year. We also have dedicated Sustainability teams based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and Pekanbaru, Dumai, Medan, Jakarta and Balikpapan in Indonesia. The Sustainability teams are tasked with implementing and monitoring our commitments through constructive stakeholder engagement and collaboration.

Dato' Yeo How

Apical Group President

Supporting the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals (UN SDGs)

While we have identi­fied nine priority goals to focus on, we recognise that all 17 SDGs are interconnected and we may indirectly support the other goals through our activities. Our corporate social responsibility activities are aligned with the UN SDGs.

How we are improving lives


In February 2019, Apical partnered with the Indonesian government to support their Mangrove Growing Programme in Dumai, to protect shorelines, absorb carbon and fi­lter air pollutants near industrial areas. The annual programme will see Apical together with local stakeholders including youth organisations and local NGOs plant mangrove seeds purchased by Apical. In 2019, 1,000 mangrove seeds were planted in Dumai.

Responsible Sourcing

To protect our environment and conserve natural resources, it is imperative that we adopt responsible production and consumption practices. To provide our customers and consumers with the confidence that our products are made from palm oil that have been responsibly sourced, we have developed a sourcing policy which Apical and its suppliers are required to adhere to and implement. Through our traceability and engagement programmes, we also work with our suppliers on adopting best practices.

Renewable Energy

As the need for reliable, affordable and sustainable energy sources continues to rise, we believe that biofuels have a role to play in meeting global energy demands. Apical produces biodiesel through the processing of palm oil at our facilities in Indonesia, which serves the 20% national biodiesel blending mandate, and in Spain where biodiesel is supplied into Europe. We also supply palm oil to biofuel customers.

There are also several technologies that enable the conversion of palm oil waste and residues into second generation renewable biofuels, which we are working towards incorporating. We are also providing guidance to our supplying mills on collecting GHG emissions data and encouraging them to adopt GHG mitigation measures.

Labour Practices

Apical is committed to providing decent work opportunities, respecting human and labour rights, and maintaining a safe work environment. We also work closely with our suppliers through our Anchor programmes to ensure positive labour practices within our supply chain.

Find out more about our Anchor programmes here in A-SIMPLE Framework.


SMILE – Apical together with Kao Corporation and Asian Agri launched a new sustainability initiative named SMallholder Inclusion for better Livelihood & Empowerment programme – or SMILE – in October 2020 to help independent smallholders in Indonesia. The new initiative is an 11-year collaboration which aims to help independent smallholders improve their yields, obtain sustainability certification, and eventually secure premiums from selling certified palm oil, in order to increase their income.

Diversified Income

We support local subsistence farmers to increase their productivity, which contributes to an increase in food supply for themselves and their families. Through the RURALITY Programme, Apical collaborated with Johnson & Johnson and Earthworm Foundation to empower smallholder farmers to create and own the mechanisms that will ultimately strengthen their resilience and improve their livelihoods. RURALITY supported the setting up and formalisation of a farmers’ group to run livestock operations.