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FPT President Truong Gia Binh.

The story of VinFast

In 2017, Vietnamese were informed about the kickoff of the construction of an automobile manufacturing complex, owned by VinFast in Cat Hai, Hai Phong. Twenty one months later, the complex opened. And just one year later, two car models of the manufacturer were displayed at an international automobile exhibition in Paris, the biggest exhibition of this kind in the world.

In June 2019, the automobile factory entered the period of mass manufacturing, a move that is considered a turning point for the Vietnam’s automobile industry, a shift from outsourcing to self-manufacturing. 

With VinFast’s car models, Vietnam has an automobile industry of its own.

VinFast is now focusing on making electric vehicles. The manufacturer introduced two electric car models at an automobile exhibition in Los Angeles in 2021. Its head office of the US branch was opened the same year. In November 2022, the company exported its first 999 electric cars.

The next milestone in VinFast’s history was the successful listing of its shares on the US bourse on August 15. VinFast’s CEO Le Thi Thu Thuy said the debut on Nasdaq opened up the opportunity to access a large capital market and set a direction for the company to follow in the future.

The US is a vast market with a value of $28 billion and policies encouraging the development of the automobile industry. However, VinFast has to compete with eminent rivals there, including Tesla, Volkswagen, Ford, Daimler, Chevrolet and GM.

To compete with the ‘big players’, VinFast is building a factory in North Carolina, which is expected to become operational in 2025.

“With the factory in North Carolina, we hope we can cut production costs and provide products at prices approachable by US clients,” Thuy said.

Analysts say that the new move by VinFast shows similarities to what Hyundai, a South Korean automobile giant, did in the 1980s, when it entered the US for the first time.

FPT – IT leader

FPT, the largest IT corporation in Vietnam, is considered a pioneer in entering foreign markets. FPT has a large network of headquarters and offices all over the globe and is an important partner of many well known groups, including Microsoft, Amazon and Airbus.

Outward investment is an important part of the corporation’s global business development strategy. In 2022, FPT reported revenue of $1 billion from foreign markets.

In 2014, FPT took over RWE IT Slovakia, the first M&A deal in the IT sector.

In 2018, FPT acquired 90 percent of shares of Intellinet, the fastest growing consultancy firm in digital transformation as ranked by Consulting Magazine 2017.

Earlier this year, FPT announced the acquisition of the entire technology services segment of the US’s Intertec International. This is a part of the strategy on expanding technology service centers worldwide. The deal allowed FPT to increase its presence in Costa Rica, Columbia and Mexico

Viettel abroad

Viettel, a military technology firm, began ‘going abroad’ very early when it established Viettel Global, specializing in outward investment, in 2006.

After three years of efforts to seek cooperation opportunities, applying for licenses and building infrastructure, Viettel officially debuted in the Cambodian market with the telecommunication network called Metfone.

In 2009, Viettel entered the second foreign market of Laos, with the Unitel brand.

Trying to expand the market, in 2010, Viettel decided to invest in underdeveloped countries, because most profitable markets were occupied.

In 2011, Viettel began providing service in Haiti. One year later, it had an official presence in Mozambique. Three years later, it made its debut in East Timor and Peru. In 2015, it entered Cameroon and Tanzania in Africa. Most recently, Viettel set foot in Myanmar in 2018.

As such, Viettel has entered 10 markets over the last 17 years of making outward investment.

Manh Ha