Seven Stones Indonesia

Terje Nilsen, Founder of Seven Stones Indonesia.

Name: Terje H. Nilsen

Title:  CEO/Founder

Company name: Seven Stones Indonesia

Company headquarters: Jakarta, Indonesia



1. What is your business/business model?

We position ourselves as a legal boutique consultancy company, towards an expat market and foreign companies wanting to establish themselves in Indonesia. We offer legal advice, visa, accounting, taxes, contracts, transaction management, market study, and much more.


2. What is your business/business model in Indonesia specifically?

We operate offices in Jakarta and Bali, as well as Finland and Norway. Our Jakarta business is somewhat different from Bali in terms of industries, but also in how we support companies to enter. In order for Nordic companies to reduce legal and financial risk, we offer them to use our facilities and team, to begin with, as well as possible partner/tender support. Eventually, once things pick up they may expand. Our plan is to expand further on this with what we would call Nordic House Jakarta.


3. How long has your company had a presence in Indonesia?

Personally, I came to Indonesia first time in 1970 and moved here full-time in 1993. Our current business was set up in 2016 and has expanded ever since.


4. What advice would you give Nordic companies looking to enter the Indonesian market?

Indonesia is one of the strongest economies in the world with continued growth, soon to be 4th largest economy in the world. However, business here is done differently and may need more time and networking (something we can help with) than the Western formats. I advise everyone to take the time due to the obvious size of the market and opportunities. It's important to enter with this in mind that things do work differently here.


5. What are some of the biggest mistakes you see foreign investors in Indonesia make?

As mentioned above, not spending enough time to develop a solid network, and not studying into Indonesian business culture. Way too often, we expect everything to be the way we are used to and companies find it hard to adjust. Sometimes we do not realize that there is really no right or wrong. It is just different, and this is where we can come in to minimize the different frequencies and ways of doing business.


6. How can those mistakes be avoided?

Spending time to understand the market beyond the usual top 5 companies will provide a very generic overview. Seek companies and persons that can give a bit more depth into the business culture of Indonesia to be better prepared.


7. What are some trends in Indonesia that you think are noteworthy/that you are excited about?

I am excited about many things. First of all, the Omnibus law and Indonesia's constant upgrading of their legal systems and bureaucracy. The second is to see how well-managed and stable the government is. Third, a strong growing economy is seen together with India as the leading economy of the world forward.


8. Why did you decide to become a member of The Nordic Chamber in Indonesia?

We work with many Nordic companies already and have a strong connection to the Nordic communities, embassies, and businesses. It was a natural process, along with NordCham being really the only functional chamber for the Nordic companies.


9. How can your company help Nordic companies in Indonesia?

As mentioned above, we may help them with market entry, office space, market studies, partner search, recruitment, and a better understanding of the Indonesian market, policies, and culture.


10. How can members reach out to you?

I am fine with NordCham members reaching out through both phone and email.


11. Favorite past-time activity in Jakarta? Or Most underestimated Jakarta restaurant/bar in your opinion? 

As I spend my time between Bali and Jakarta, I am more familiar with Bali. Thus, my favorite time is actually spending time in Bali. I am more than happy to bring some inside tips for expats wanting to go to Bali.


12. Anything else you’d like to share?

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