Sampoerna plans to establish new factories for hand-rolled clove cigarettes (SKT) throughout Java, Indonesia, hiring tens of thousands of employees and creating multiplier effects for local communities, the company announced on its website.
This plan will be first realized with a new SKT production facility in Blitar City, East Java, and one in Tegal Regency, Central Java, with operations scheduled to commence in the first half of 2024.
“As a company that has been operating for 110 years in Indonesia, the new addition to Sampoerna’s SKT production facilities through an investment of up to IDR638 billion [$42 million] will strengthen Sampoerna’s SKT portfolio,” said Sampoerna President Director Vassilis Gkatzelis.
“With a total new workforce of tens of thousands of workers, directly and indirectly, we are optimistic that this action by Sampoerna will increase employment opportunities in the formal sector for the local community while creating a strong multiplier effect for economic development and becoming one of the growth drivers in those regions.”
Currently, Sampoerna operates four SKT manufacturing facilities in Surabaya, Malang and Probolinggo; two machine-made cigarette production facilities in Pasuruan and Karawang; and one smoke-free tobacco product manufacturing facility in Karawang, where the company manufactures Heets for Philip Morris International’s IQOS tobacco-heating product.
In addition, Sampoerna also partners with 38 third-party operators (TPO) across 28 regencies/cities in Java. Sampoerna currently has more than 76,000 direct and indirect employees, about 90 percent of whom are working in the SKT production facilities.
In addition to opening Sampoerna’s new SKT production facilities in Blitar City and Tegal Regency, there will be additional employment of tens of thousands of people in existing TPOs in East Java, Central Java, the Special Region of Yogyakarta, and West Java, as well as with the opening of five new TPOs in East Java and Central Java in the first half of 2024.
After a long period of decline, the SKT segment has started to recover in Indonesia, with the market share going up to around 27 percent until the third quarter of 2023. According to Sampoerna, this development has been driven in part by the government’s excise tax policy which, especially since 2021, which considers employment.