Last updated: Thursday, February 21, 2019


The Beauty in Business

Posted: Friday, October 12, 2018

Many Vietnamese businesswomen are renowned not only in Vietnam but also in the region and the world. They typically build, administer and operate leading brands in Vietnam. They are not only beautiful and talented, but also the pride of Vietnamese women as a whole.

Elite executives
For many years, Ms Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao has always been named one of the richest people in the world with net worth of over US$3 billion. She is known as the founder and successful manager of the private airline VietJet, which surpassed the national carrier in just a very short time. Within five years, VietJet reached the market capitalisation of VND100 trillion (US$4.3 billion) and accounted for 43 per cent of the airline market share in Vietnam. In addition, she holds many key positions at banks and businesses.

Ms Mai Kieu Lien, Chairwoman and CEO of Vinamilk with a market capitalisation of US$13.1 billion, is among the 50 most powerful Asian businesswomen as voted by Forbes. She has led the 40-year-old dairy brand of Vietnam to more than 40 countries in the world and approached the target of top 50 global dairy companies.

Under the leadership of Ms Thai Huong, TH True Milk Joint Stock Company - a member company of TH Group - has grown stunningly in scope and revenue. Recently, she decided to resign as the Chair of the Board of Directors of TH True Milk to assume the CEO position of Bac A Commercial Joint Stock Bank.

Ms Nguyen Thi Mai Thanh, President and CEO of REE Corporation, has led the corporation from an obsolete mechanical factory that made refrigerating equipment for ice factories to a worthy brand.

Nguyen Thi Nga, Chairwoman of BRG Group, is the first person to establish a private bank in Vietnam, respectively holding chairwomanship at Techcombank and SeABank. She owns many famous golf courses and hotels, and runs many businesses such as Intimex Vietnam Company, Theatre Hotel Company, Thang Loi Hotel, Hanoi Tourism Service Corporation and Hanoi Trade Corporation (Hapro).

Making dreams come true
At the Vietnam Business Summit, VietJet CEO Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao advised start-up entrepreneurs to dare to dream big dreams and make ambitions come true through everyday action, bring the spirit of digitisation and automation of the Fourth Industrial Revolution into life and into every business process.

The first female billionaire of Vietnam said that flights in the era of Industry 4.0 may fly without servants but machines must be taught to smile and the world is not changed by technology but by human dreams. Just about five years ago, air tickets were made on paper, payment was made through cashiers and check-ins were manned, but a smartphone can help do these works in addition to many other things.

In fact, teaching machines how to smile is hardly believable for the time being. But, many people still believe in the change in the future like the way we work with supercomputers like smart phones on our hand, which was illusionary just two or three decades ago.

“Living without dreams is the most emotionless. Living is having dreams, ambitions and aspirations. Then, we will have the aspiration to succeed and the desire to do a lot of good things,” said Ms Thai Huong, Vice President and CEO of Bac A Bank. She is known to have helped the Vietnamese dairy sector to thrive since she founded the TH True Milk brand.

To date, Ms Thai Huong has laid the foundations for the Vietnamese dairy industry in the heart of the Vietnamese people, boosting transparency in the dairy market, bringing health to Vietnamese people. When TH is not present on the market, Vietnamese cows are not available on the world map. After five years, Vietnam has the largest cow farm in Asia.

Empowering women
According to the second research on the MasterCard Index of Women Entrepreneurs (MIWE), Vietnam scored 65.5 points, ranked 18th, after top-placed New Zealand (74.2 points), Sweden (71.3 points), Canada (70.9 points), the United States (70.8 points) and Singapore (69.2 points). The share of women entrepreneurs in the business community is 31.3 per cent, ranked sixth globally.

The study tracks the progress and achievements of businesswomen and women-led businesses in 57 countries in Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, and North America. Businesswomen in developed countries have more advantages than those developing countries because they take advantage of better opportunities and resources, such as access to capital and financial services and educational programmes. In addition, this index shows that successful and start-up businesswomen continue to grow in the world although there are gender biases that hinder them.

In addition, the women entrepreneur development is not necessarily consistent with the economic development of the country. Developing countries like Ghana (46.4 per cent), Uganda (33.8 per cent) and Vietnam (31.3 per cent) have higher shares of female entrepreneurs than developed countries, largely due to the urgency of life and the need for survival. However, women entrepreneurs still lack capital and access to support services.
It's not easy for a woman to do business and it is much harder to be successful. So many people have called these successful businesswomen as "female leaders". Gender equality and women empowerment needed to break all barriers, enabling them to contribute more actively to their families, society and business sectors are what Vietnam is paying attention to.

Dr Vu Tien Loc, President of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), said, Vietnam advocates empowering women, encouraging women's engagement in all economic and societal fields. Currently in Vietnam, three out of 10 people doing business are women, a quite high rate in the world. The Vietnamese law gives priority to women-owned enterprises and enterprises that use many female workers. Their priorities include access to credit and access to markets. Many organisations now have many support programmes for women entrepreneurs. VCCI also has the Vietnam Women Entrepreneurs Council, assigned to conduct a series of activities to improve the competitiveness of women-owned enterprises, improve their management knowledge and attitudes, and expand their access to markets and finance. Notably, VCCI helped establish the Women Empowerment Foundation, chaired by Ms Ha Thu Thanh, member of the VCCI Executive Committee.

Anh Mai

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