Galaxy Studio denies Galaxy Cinema sale rumours

Vingroup chairman Pham Nhat Vuong Pham Nhat Vuong VinGroup Pham Nhat Vuong is the founder and chairman of VinGroup, one of Viet Nam’s largest private business groups with a market capitalisation of nearly US$5 billion based on the company’s share price on the HCM Stock Exchange on July 28, 2017. Vuong was a rare Vietnamese entry in the Forbes list of the world’s billionaire in 2013 with total assets valued at $1.5 billion. His net assets were estimated at $2.4 billion on Forbes’ website as of July 28, 2017. With a stake of around 65 per cent in VinGroup, directly and indirectly through the Vietnam Investment Group, Vuong has been in the list of 10 richest people on the Vietnamese stock market for eight consecutive years. Born in 1968 in Ha Noi, Vuong studied in Moscow but started his business Technocom Group by making fast food in Ukraine, building a popular brand, ‘Mivina’ with annual sales of $150 million. He returned to Viet Nam in early 2000s and began investing in real estate at the time of ‘hot land fever’. In 2009, he sold his food company in Ukraine to Nestle and relocated his entire business to Viet Nam. He founded Vinpearl Land, focusing on hospitality and leisure in Nha Trang in 2001, and began developing commercial real estate under the brand name Vincom in Ha Noi in 2002. The Vincom Joint Stock Company (VinGroup) was established in May 2002…... [read more]

Local entrepreneurs join forces for rhino protection Kieu Giang Around 100 leading entrepreneurs signed a commitment for not using rhino horns or products from wild animals and pledge to contribute to the protection of wild animals in Vietnam at a large-scale campaign hosted by WildAid and CHANGE in Hanoi on Wednesday. A commitment to preserve wildlife and stop the use of rhino horns in Vietnam was kicked off a year ago when U.S.’s billionaire Richard Branson had a meeting with a group of entrepreneurs in the country during his visit to Vietnam. Since then, there have been 75 more business leaders and 250 senior staff of enterprises signing the pledge. Vietnam and China are the two major consuming markets of rhino horns that are illegally hunted in South Africa and other African countries. There have been 5,750 rhinos killed in South Africa since 2008. Some of the entrepreneurs signing the commitment include Tran Hung Huy, chairman of Asia Commercial Bank (ACB), David Do, managing director of Vietnam Investments Group, Truong Hue Van, chairwoman of WMC, Nguyen Thi Mai Thanh, CEO of REE, Dinh Thi Hoa, CEO of Thien Ngan, Bui Quang Ngoc, general director of FPT Group, Le Quoc Vinh, CEO of Le Media, and Hoang Khai, CEO of Khai Silk, among others. Nguyen Thi Mai Thanh said in a statement that by signing the commitment, she wished to both balance financial benefits and social values. “I understand my role and responsibilities towards social issues, especially the consumption of wild…... [read more]

IT attractive to foreign investors By Quoc Hung - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC - Foreign information technology firms and investment funds are interested in venturing into Vietnamese IT and software development companies. This was what shared by many businessmen, investment consultants and managers at the Super Investors Day 2012 held in HCMC on Thursday. Chu Tien Dung, chairman of Quang Trung Software City Development Co. Ltd., said many foreign IT and software development firms were planning to expand to Vietnam and seeking partnerships with local software enterprises. Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the event, he said most foreign investors chose to take over Vietnamese firms to enter the local market. Therefore, he predicted, mergers and acquisitions (M&A) would be busier in the local IT industry and investors seemed to prefer small businesses. Foreign investors seeking to buy into Vietnamese companies are only interested in the local market and available human resources. They are willing to change the names of the companies they acquire and transfer technology to them for quick business resumption, instead of investing in new firms. Dung noted this trend helped shorten M&A talks. For instance, Japanese investors were formerly very prudent and only began their investment after 2 or 3 years of surveying the local market, but now a survey only takes about six months. Nguyen Tat Thang, chief economist at HSC Company and an investment consultant, said the IT sector is appealing to foreign investors, especially those from Japan. Vietnam’s IT industry…... [read more]

Low labor quality hinders investments in Mekong By Quoc Hung - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC - Low quality and poor discipline of human resources in the Mekong Delta are the biggest concerns of foreign investors. This view was shared by local businesses and foreign investors at a seminar on investment promotion for Can Tho City and the Mekong Delta co-organized by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), the 2030 Business Club under the Saigon Times Club and Can Tho Promotion last Friday in HCMC. Ha Xuan Anh, chairman of Son Viet Garment Corporation, known for the fashion brand Relax, said the Mekong Delta, with around 18 million people, 22% of the national population, is considered a large market for the garments industry and many others. Consumers here, Anh noted, have disposable incomes and many of them are willing to spend up to 90% of their incomes. However, the biggest headache Anh will face when he plans to open a factory in this area is labor. Although the region has an abundant workforce, the educational level of locals is generally low, he said. What worries him more is the lack of labor skills and of discipline, so it is hard to ensure production efficiency. Sharing Anh’s view, Dao Ngoc Hoang Giang, general director of Sao Mai Office Equipment JSC, said it is difficult to find workers with medium and high skills levels in the delta. Therefore, expanding production and business operations is a hard nut to crack. Speaking…... [read more]

Internal audits are necessary: experts Thanh Thuong By Thanh Thuong - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC – A department for internal audits is necessary to probe financial statements and publish reports that are both objective and familiar with the activities of a company, said Ken Atkinson, managing partner of Grant Thornton Vietnam. He was speaking at ‘Putting investors at the heart of the financial system’ workshop held by UK-based Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and Grant Thornton in HCMC on Monday. Participants at the workshop shared the view that in the future, accounting and auditing standards should be revised, or financial information disclosure should focus more on what investors need. Andy Ho, managing director of VinaCapital Investment Fund, said investors need clear and specific information, which should be disclosed on a monthly basis. At present, financial statements are mostly publicized quarterly and annually, and not all of them are comprehensible. Therefore, Ho said the regulation on information disclosure should be improved. Regarding internal audit, he insists it plays a role in corporate governance. When investing in a company, VinaCapital considers whether the firm can protect its assets, whether the assets are properly valuated, whether information about the assets is sufficient, and if the assets’ values for shareholders can be optimized in the long term. Therefore, the investment fund pays special attention to the role of internal audit in order to prevent losses on the assets it invests in. David Do, managing director of Vietnam Investment Group, said internal auditors…... [read more]

Foreigners still hesitant on stock market Thanh Thuong By Thanh Thuong - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC – Although foreign buying value hit an eight-month high in November, securities enterprises said that the investors have yet to come back to the local market given risk concerns. Last month, foreign buying value stood at over VND3.2 trillion on the Hochiminh Stock Exchange (HOSE) while their selling value was VND1.8 trillion. However, large transactions of Vingroup Company (VIC) in the final days of the month soared to over VND1 trillion. If VIC transactions were netted off, foreigners were net buyers to the tune of just VND338 billion, which was equivalent to previous months. VIC on November 30 announced that South Hanoi Urban Development Joint Stock Company and Vietnam Investment Group Joint Stock Company completed block deals of eight million and 5.4 million VIC shares respectively. These trades were pre-registered with the southern stock watchdog a couple of days ago with the total value of over VND1 trillion. Trinh Hoai Giang, deputy general director of HCMC Securities Corp. (HSC), said that not many new investors have joined the market as only 38 foreign accounts, both individual and institutional, were registered at the Vietnam Securities Depository in November. HSC, who takes the lead in terms of foreign brokerage market share, saw no new investors. Having met many foreign investors, Giang said they are interested in the local stock market but hesitant to put money on the playground at the moment. Their confidence in an…... [read more]

EU enterprises positive on Vietnam's business climate European Union enterprises have indicated positive sentiment on the business environment in Vietnam, with many of them planning to increase investment, according to a Business Climate Index (BCI) survey for quarter 2, 2016, conducted by the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham). Accordingly, the majority of European enterprises acknowledged that the country's macroeconomic stability will likely continue, with 56.3 percent of respondents forcasting "stabilisation and improvement" and just 9.4 percent of respondents expecting deterioration . The chamber revealed that about 49 percent of the respondents expect the number of orders or revenue to increase slightly in the next quarter. 15.6 percent of them were even more optimistic. Therefore, when they were asked about investment and personnel development plans, responses were also positive, consistent with the expected business orders. The trend is considered as a good sign for the implementation of the European Union-Vietnam free trade agreement (EUVFTA), that is expected to boost business and investment activities by foreign enterprises in Vietnam. Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoTT) showed that two-way trade between Vietnam and the EU reached 21.2 billion USD in the first seven months of this year, up 9.05 percent compared the same period last year. Of this figure, Vietnam shipped 16.2 billion USD worth of goods to the EU, a year on year increase of 8.68 percent while importing over 4.97 billion USD worth of goods, up 10.28 percent against the same period in 2015. Tran Ngoc…... [read more]

Staff of Vietnam Investments Group (VI Group) study to boost the corporate governance. — VNS Photo HA NOI (Biz Hub) — More than 20 board members and senior investment and portfolio executives of Vietnam Investments Group (VI Group) attended a corporate governance workshop in HCM City on August 15. Hosted by VI Group and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, the workshop sought to improve corporate governance practices among VI Group portfolio companies, in a bid to boost the company's performance, increase access to finance, and encourage sustained economic growth. At the workshop, experts reviewed best practices on creating more effective boards and control mechanisms to raise transparency and accountability. Chris Razook, IFC Corporate Governance Lead for East Asia and the Pacific, noted, "Good corporate governance can help increase shareholder value. We are working with our investment client, VI Group, to further improve governance practices among its portfolio companies to raise their performance and sustainability levels." The workshop also provided an update on the latest corporate governance requirements of Vietnam's 2014 Law on Enterprises, which took effect in July 2015. The law clearly defines the role of an independent director in a company board and states that, subject to requirements, Vietnamese joint-stock companies are allowed to set up audit committees based on international practices without having a supervisory board. "We begin working with our portfolio companies at an early stage to add value to them for the long term," said David Do, Managing Director of VI Group, which…... [read more]

A Vietnamese businesswoman was dismissed from the National Assembly Sunday following a unanimous vote after she was found to also have citizenship of Malta. Nguyen Thi Nguyet Huong, 46, was found guilty of flouting the Law on Vietnamese Nationality, which prohibits Vietnamese citizens from having dual citizenship, Nguyen Hanh Phuc, the spokesman of the National Election Council, said. She did not declare her Maltese citizenship in her election nomination. The fact came to light Saturday, prompting an emergency meeting Sunday to vote on her dismissal, he said. It is unclear why Huong has dual citizenship. She is the chair of TNG Holdings Vietnam investment group, which has invested in several urban area and apartment projects in Hanoi. She is also chairwoman of the Hanoi Industry and Trade Association. She was among 495 candidates to win National Assembly seats in the general elections in May. Last week Trinh Xuan Thanh, former deputy chairman of the Hau Giang Province People’s Committee, had been dismissed after being found accountable for massive losses at a major state-owned oil company and censured for illegally using a government license plate on his private car.... [read more]

Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Vietnam continues to gain ground, encouraged by positive economic prospects, political stability and government commitments to liberalize the economy. In 2015 FDI totaled $13 billion, a decline of 13 per cent from 2014 but a significant uptick from investment barely reaching the $2 billion mark in the early 2000s. Since September 2015 FDI caps in numerous industries have been lifted, allowing overseas investors to take up majority ownership or full ownership (100 per cent acquisition) in publicly-listed Vietnamese firms. The long awaited removal of investment caps for overseas investors in certain sectors is likely to see such figures increase in the year ahead. Inbound M&A increases According to the latest "Foreign Inbound M&A in Frontier Vietnam Sees Exponential Growth" report, released by Kroll, the global leader in risk mitigation and response solutions, which has teamed up with Mergermarket, inbound merger and acquisition (M&A) as a component of FDI has likewise posted strong growth over the past year. Inbound acquisition values totaled $3.5 billion in 2015, increasing 406 per cent from the $706 million in deal value in the prior year and accounting for 94 per cent of deal activity in the country. As government efforts to attract foreign capital take root, inbound M&A in Vietnam remains dominated by acquirers. Regional bidders completed 77 per cent of inbound deals in 2015, accounting for 94 per cent of deal values. Vietnam is also gaining ground on its neighboring countries, recording the second-highest number of cross-border transactions into…... [read more]

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