ecoSmart Building Solutions Story

ecoSmart Founders Komang & Christian

Our ecoSmart Story

In 1997 Christian visited Indonesia for the first time holidaying in Lombok with his friend Stephan.

On one of their trips they encountered children playing games in the sand and they came up with the idea of a board game MANDUA.

This became their first experience doing business in Indonesia, developing a handmade board game using Sasak and Bali Hindu aspects in their designs.

After registering a patent and copyrights they launched the game on the Toy Fair in Essen in 1998, despite having a unique design and interesting concept the game never took off due to lack of funds and a lot of inexperience in doing business, but it left a first impression on the opportunities Indonesia had to offer.

Christian moved to Indonesia in April 2000, to help setup of Hammerhead Fitness Center in which he became a small shareholder in 1999.

A month later he met Komang and this is how our story starts.

Komang was working at a dive center in Kuta and Christian was volunteering at Art For Tourism Foundation working with Johan Hensen.

The focus was on on more social and environmentally integrated tourism promotion packages and concepts.

In 2002 right after the Bali terror attack Christian was approached by some of the longer term expats, especially Steve Palmer from Surfer Girl to be part of a group to help the Bali tourism recovery.

The idea of a NGO took form and led to the foundation of the Kuta Small Business Association for which Christian became the Executive Secretary.

The association was structured under a local advisory board and expat and local business members.

Besides of a lot of good concepts for improved tourism development for the Kuta/Legian/Seminyak area most effected by the tragedy one idea took on a life of its own, the Kuta Karnival.

With hardly any tourists in Bali after the events of October 12th, the focus was to re-motivate the local community and also provide a feeling of togetherness and defiance.

The theme for the Kuta Karnival became “A Celebration of Life” and was held for the first time from 9/11 to 12/10 2023.

The event was commemorating the terror attacks in New York and Bali through a festival unlike any other and the biggest of its kind in Bali.

The event was a great success with everyone from the local ad expat community volunteering, sponsoring and participating.

In a way that was unheard of before and probably remains one of the major successes of the initiative.

Shortly after the Kuta Karnival Christian felt that there was too much reliance on a single sector like tourism for an island like Bali with so much else to offer.

Based on his experience in Art For Tourism and KSBA he together with Komang developed a project concept to support local SMEs in the handicraft sector.

The main goal of the project was to enable the SMEs through capacity building to switch from being wholesalers to become exporters.

The concept EuroBali Export Network was presented to WIFI a division of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce.

Together with WIFI as the lead, Formaper from the Milan Chamber of Commerce and the KSBA a proposal was successfully entered to the EU Asia Invest grant program.

After the 2 year funded program in which 66 SMEs were trained some of the participants were interested in a continuation.

This resulted in the founding of the Bali (now Business) and Export Development Organization (BEDO) a NGO focused on capacity building, training and education for Indonesian MSMEs.

Also in 2003 Komang and Christian founded the Bali International Consulting Group (BICG) to provide a platform for likeminded people to facilitate projects together in the field of sustainable development.

Under BICG there were a EU Asia Pro Eco Post Tsunami project for the island of Nias for the recovery of the local fishing industry, a DANIDA project on Energy Audit and Certification standards for Indonesia.

There were also reforestation projects, market research and a range of other projects related to sustainable development.

Komang and Christian also were engaged as consultants by Swisscontact and GIZ.

Serving for various projects related to sustainable destination development and resource efficiency in Lombok, Bali, West Kalimantan, Central Java, Tanah Toraja and Flores.

Through the increased network in the sustainable development sector and through a market research for IFC there was the idea of a Sustainable Timber Marketplace.

In 2008 the partnership was formalized under PT. Little Tree with the main brand being Little Tree.

In 2012 there was a change of management as Komang and Christian decided to take a more active role in the company.

There was also the idea to expand the service and solutions offer from a limited range of materials to a One-Stop-Building and Maintenance Solutions concept. under the brand ecoSmart.

In 2013 we also launched ecoSmart Works a dedicated website for our woodworking division using sustainable timbers, adhesives and coatings and being the exclusive distributor for BONA AS from Sweden.

For our showroom and as the umbrella brand we decided on ecoSmart HUB and we also became the exclusive distributor for Deckwise LLC from USA, URIMAT AG from Switzerland and EP Asia an Australian owned company manufacturing in Malaysia

After early research and trials since 2013 with Macro Fiber Reinforcement ecoSmart formally signed aa distribution agreement with CONTEC Fiber AG from Switzerland in 2020 and launched a dedicated website under the ecoSmart Concrete brand..

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