Pertamina President Director Nicke Widyawati. (Antara Photo/Akbar Nugroho Gumay)

'She Is Still the Best': Gov't Keeps Nicke Widyawati at Pertamina


JUNE 13, 2020

Jakarta. The government has decided to keep Nicke Widyawati at the helm of Pertamina to lead the state energy firm's transformation into a holding company of several publicly listed subsidiaries in the next two years. 

"So far, Nicke is still the best as Pertamina's president director, as she was able to carry out any tasks assigned to her," State-Owned Enterprises Minister Erick Thohir said on Friday. 

Nicke ascended to the post in August 2018 as an interim president director following a short reign of the previous Pertamina chief's, Elia Massa Manik. Elia's idea to streamline Pertamina's organization faced opposition from then the SOE minister, Rini Soemarno. 

But now, Erick followed through with the streamlining plan. He cut the number of directors to six from 11 previously, removing the post for the upstream director, corporate marketing director, retail marketing director, processing director, and petrochemical megaprojects. 

Emma Sri Martini continues to hold the position of financial director, Mulyono as director of logistics and infrastructure, and Koeshartanto as director of human resources. Meanwhile, M. Haryo Yunianto, who previously served as director of asset management, became the business support director.

The government also appointed Iman Rachman as the portfolio strategy and new ventures director. Iman was the only new face in the current Pertamina's board of directors. Previously he handled Perusahaan Pegelola Aset, a state-owned enterprise that specializes in restructuring ailing companies. 

Erick said he tasked the new Pertamina's board of directors with consolidating the energy firm's subsidiaries into several new sub-holdings, namely upstream business, processing and petrochemicals, commercial and marketing, and renewable energy. 

Pertamina already has a sub-holding in gas and shipping sector after the government merged publicly-listed Perusahaan Gas Negara and Pertamina's gas unit Petragas in 2018. 

Erick said he had given several key performance indicators to the directors, including a target that at least two of the sub holdings must go public in two years to improve the transparency and accountability in the sub holdings management. 

"I have issued a circular to [Pertamina employees] about this consolidation. This is not about complicating the bureaucracy, but to eliminate 'small kings'," Erick said.