[CREATIVE INDUSTRY: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES]
Indonesia’s creative industries offer both challenges and opportunities for new entrepreneurs and foreign companies coming to the sector.
The large domestic market and rapid rate of new technology uptake reflected in the widespread success of social media make it ripe for innovative products in the digital arena. Local Indonesian brands are gaining international recognition such as Bagteria, a boutique bag producer using traditional craft and embroidery techniques. Founder, Nancy Go’s creations have been seen on celebrities and are sold in stores throughout Asia, the Middle East and in Europe. The brand reflects the potential for international success of other Indonesian designers many of which are already making headway in areas such as Muslim fashion and batik.
The sector presents opportunities for investment and partnership to access the domestic market. Indonesian consumers represent a large, youthful and highly adaptive market. The uptake of technology takes place at high speed with Indonesia being Facebook’s second largest market and Twitter’s third largest worldwide. One of the major challenges faced by the industry is the lack of protection of intellectual property. Intellectual property as a concept has been slow to take hold in the country with counterfeit DVDs for films, music and software openly sold by vendors. Consumer attitudes are more geared towards the purchase of cheaper replicas over the original with quality not being a major consideration. For producers of pirated goods, the lack of enforcement of the laws and low rate of prosecution for such cases keeps the industry going. The government, through the Directorate General of Intellectual Property under the Ministry of Justice, has set goals to tackle this.
The creative industry is seen as a vital part of moving the country towards a more innovative and knowledge based economy, therefore encouragement of the sector will continue with the aim of it infiltrating the practices in other industries. The large domestic market and natural artistic disposition of the culture makes the country ideal for partnerships in this area for both export and tapping the consumer market. Intellectual property rights will remain a major challenge for entrepreneurs to contend with and will require greater will on the part of the government to set an example by strict enforcement against those that infringe it. In the meantime, new local brands must concentrate on developing affinity with consumers and continue to innovate to meet the demands of the fast paced consumer environment.