His father was the contractor Achmad Bakrie. Bakrie studied at the Bandung Institute of Technology Electronics beings. After his studies he began in 1972 to work in his father's, Bakrie & Brothers Company and later rose to its officers. Bakrie and his family control the Energi Mega Persada energy companies. According to the Forbes magazine, he is one of the richest Indonesians.
In addition to his business activities, Bakrie is also active as a politician. From 1991 to 1995 he was President of the ASEAN Economic Forum. From 1994 to 2004, Bakrie President of the Economic Chamber of Commerce and Indonesia. He was from 2004 to 2009 Minister of Economic Affairs of Indonesia and from December 2005 Minister of Welfare. He is also Chairman of the Golkar Party. In the presidential elections in 2014, Bakrie takes as a candidate. He is married and has three children.
2006 broke from the Sidoarjo mud volcano. According to Greenpeace, one of the Bakrie family PT Lapindo Brantas company belonging caused the outbreak.