Vietnam drink maker hit by boycott, quality inspection after winning fly-in-bottle lawsuit

The Vietnamese Consumer Protection Association has received complaints from local residents and authorities in the southern province of Ca Mau, as

Tan Hiep Phat Group, the maker of several popular drinks in Vietnam, is being boycotted on the Internet and scrutinized by the country’s consumer association, only days after winning a lawsuit that sent one of its consumers to prison. hundreds of Tan Hiep Phat-made herbal tea products were found containing strange objects last week. "We have tasked the Ca Mau consumer protection unit with inviting the drink maker for a meeting to clarify the issue," the association head, Nguyen Phuoc Hong, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Sunday. The Ca Mau food safety watchdog said last week they had found more than 100 unopened bottles of Dr Thanh herbal tea to be containing floating ‘dregs’ from various places in the province. The products are all within their expiry date, but white sediment can easily be seen floating at the bottom of the bottles, raising doubt over their quality, according to food safety officers. Seventy-nine of the Dr Thanh bottles were seized on … [Read more...]

BUSINESS IN BRIEF 15/3

New bond trading system launches The second version of the Government bond trading system was introduced by the Ha Noi Stock Exchange last week and will be used for the first time next Monday when Circular 234/2012/TT-BTC takes effect. The system was upgraded in response to provisions in the circular concerning risk management and repurchase agreement (repo) trading. A repo agreement occurs when the selling party agrees to repurchase bonds in the future. The new version integrates bond and treasury bill trading, information systems and a yield curve. "The Government bond market has actively contributed to investment resources of both the State budget and financial institutions this past year," said Deputy Minister of Finance Tran Xuan Ha. In addition, Ha said, the liquidity of the market improved significantly -boosting capital turnover and creating conditions for short-term capital to develop into long-term funding, which would help the domestic economy. The deputy minister told … [Read more...]

Supplemental nutrition drink manufacturers enter a new race

VietNamNet Bridge - While the battle among green tea manufacturers is described as a noisy fight, the competition among supplemental nutrition drink manufacturers has been going quietly, but very fiercely. The new potential market segment In March 2013, Tan Hiep Phat launched a noisy marketing campaign, introducing its new product--Number One Vitamin, after a long period of surveying the market. The General Director of Tan Hiep Phat Tran Quy Thanh in person, together with his staff, came to the markets to sell the products/ With Number One Vitamin, Tan Hiep Phat hoped to make a breakthrough in the new market segment - the thing it once did with Tra Xanh Khong Do and Dr Thanh green tea products. Tan Hiep Phat has declined to reveal the sales over the last three months, but one of its senior executive said the sale has been good enough to think of launching other products for the same market segments. Prior to that, in August 2012, the market witnessed the appearance of Pocan … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s consumer goods market attracting foreign investors

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Since 2011, the consumer goods industry had become one of the most in-demand industries for mergers and acquisitions in Vietnam. A report by Nielsen shows that the consumer goods market in Vietnam grew 23 percent in 2012, followed by India with 18.8 percent, and China with 13 percent. This is why many foreign investors are being attracted to the Vietnamese consumer goods industry. A survey by Bain & Company and SVCA showed that 80 percent of investment funds invested in countries in Southeast Asia considered consumer goods as an attractive industry for investment with Vietnam being the most interesting market in the region. Masan Consumer has currently caught the most attention in the consumer products industry in Vietnam thanks to huge M&A business deals. Of late, after receiving US$200 million more from KKR, Masan Consumer announced a 24.9 percent stake in Vinh Hao Mineral Water Corporation. Accordingly, the company wants to acquire 100 percent stake in the … [Read more...]

Business leadership through generations

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As an old Vietnamese saying puts it: "Bamboo shoots will replace old bamboo." The expression may well apply at major Vietnamese private companies like beverage manufacturer Tan Hiep Phat, creditor ACB and Kinh Do Corporation. These companies have been operating for about 20 years—and now the founders are looking within their families for the next generation of leadership. Examples of a dynasty vary, from closely-held, family-run businesses where it is to be expected, to large institutions where the appointments raise questions. In mid September 2012, Tran Hung Huy, 34, became new chairman at ACB commercial bank following the arrest of its former vice chairman Nguyen Duc Kien due to his wrongdoings at his own companies. Huy is a young top executive among Vietnamese bankers. But otherwise, many people may ask, who is he? Those who know ACB, one of Vietnam's top-tier banks, well know the answer. He's a son of Tran Mong Hung, a founder of ACB like Kien. Reportedly, the two … [Read more...]

BUSINESS IN BRIEF 10/4

Financial shares stave off market losses Banking and brokerage shares helped lift indices in the first trading week of April. On the HCM City Stock Exchange, the VN-Index halted its earlier correction and concluded the week at 447.44 points, a slight gain of 0.4 per cent over the previous Friday's close. Market value of the four-session trading week averaged VND948 billion (US$45 million) per day on an average daily volume of about 65.8 million shares. On the Ha Noi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index closed at 74.69, an increase of 0.27 per cent over the prior week. On the northern bourse, the value of trades reached an average of VND729.6 billion ($34.7 million) per session, with around 79 million shares traded per day. Shares in securities firms were the most noteworthy stocks last week, with the movements of these stocks becoming significant indicators for the entire market. By contrast, investors seemed to be hesitant with real estate stocks in expectations of meagre business … [Read more...]

Firms urged to protect intellectual property

HCM CITY — Companies should use professional legal services to protect their intellectual property and popularise their trademark, a conference heard in HCM City yesterday. Speaking at the conference held to discuss challenges and ways to protect intellectual property rights (IPR), experts said many Vietnamese firms were not even aware of the importance of protecting IPR, an important competitive tool. Viet Nam passed the Intellectual Property Law in 2005, but piracy remains rampant. The National Office of Intellectual Property of Viet Nam (NOIP) said the number of cases of industrial property violation in 2010 had increased by 40.5 per cent to 215 compared to 2009. The country has also approved and enforced international IP conventions like the Madrid Protocol, the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, and the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. Many bylaws to guide IPR-related laws have been introduced but only a … [Read more...]

BUSINESS IN BRIEF 30/11

Jan-Nov export tops $87 billion Vietnam's total export turnover in the year to November rose by 34.7 percent year-on-year to reach US$87.1 billion, the General Customs Department reported. The domestic economic sector accounted for $37.81 billion of the total turnover and the FDI sector, $49.35 billion. Most of the country's export staples saw an increase in turnover. Textiles and garments, which brought home $1.2 billion in the 11-month period, remained the top earner, followed by crude oil, $660 million, and seafood, $580 million. Meanwhile, Vietnam's import turnover in 11 months was $96 billion, or 26.4 percent higher compared to the same period last year. This widened the January - November trade gap to $8.9 billion, or 10.21 percent of the export turnover. In related news, the Foreign Investment Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment reported that Vietnam's disbursed foreign direct investment (FDI) capital in 11 months increased 1 percent year on year to … [Read more...]

BUSINESS IN BRIEF 30/11

Jan-Nov export tops $87 billion Vietnam’s total export turnover in the year to November rose by 34.7 percent year-on-year to reach US$87.1 billion, the General Customs Department reported. The domestic economic sector accounted for $37.81 billion of the total turnover and the FDI sector, $49.35 billion. Most of the country’s export staples saw an increase in turnover. Textiles and garments, which brought home $1.2 billion in the 11-month period, remained the top earner, followed by crude oil, $660 million, and seafood, $580 million. Meanwhile, Vietnam’s import turnover in 11 months was $96 billion, or 26.4 percent higher compared to the same period last year. This widened the January – November trade gap to $8.9 billion, or 10.21 percent of the export turnover. In related news, the Foreign Investment Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment reported that Vietnam's disbursed foreign direct investment (FDI) capital in 11 months increased 1 … [Read more...]

Businesses explore North Africa, Middle East markets

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A Vietnamese business delegation has visited Sudan and Egypt to seek investment and cooperation opportunities in the North African and Middle Eastern markets. The delegation had working sessions with Sudanese ministries and took part in an Egypt-Vietnam business forum to exchange information and seek partners in the beverage, media, and farm produce export and import sectors. Tran Uyen Phuong, honorary consul at the Sudanese embassy in Vietnam and member of the board of directors of Vietnam's Tan Hiep Phat Group, said that they consider Sudan an open market with great potential, and that now is a good time for Vietnamese businesses to invest in Sudan. Phuong also saw Egypt as another major market. Her delegation met many Egyptian businesses in Cairo in an open and serious atmosphere. Source: VOV … [Read more...]

Businesses explore North Africa,Middle East markets

A Vietnamese business delegation has visited Sudan and Egypt to seek investment and cooperation opportunities in the North African and Middle Eastern markets. The delegation had working sessions with Sudanese ministries and took part in an Egypt-Vietnam business forum to exchange information and seek partners in the beverage, media, and farm produce export and import sectors. Tran Uyen Phuong, honorary consul at the Sudanese embassy in Vietnam and member of the board of directors of Vietnam’s Tan Hiep Phat Group, said that they consider Sudan an open market with great potential, and that now is a good time for Vietnamese businesses to invest in Sudan. Phuong also saw Egypt as another major market. Her delegation met many Egyptian businesses in Cairo in an open and serious atmosphere. … [Read more...]

Tan Hiep Phat quenches Vietnam’s thirst

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Vietnam's "Dr. Thanh" is just a family business ... and a beverage juggernaut. Family business has become the ground-level norm in bustling, entrepreneurial Vietnam, but it's hard to find a match for Tan Hiep Phat (THP), the corporate creation of Tran Qui Thanh's clan. In ten years of living and working at the company's headquarters and plant outside old Saigon, they have turned a small brewery into a domestic beverage empire. "Dr. Thanh" herbal teas and other THP drinks outsell Coca-Cola, Pepsi and all the rest. The 57-year-old chairman, from his oval office in a glass-office wing that resembles one of his beverage cans, is a fount of slogans and philosophical quotations. "Today must be better than yesterday but not as good as tomorrow," goes one, posted about the plant for his 5,000 workers to ponder. He is usually found in a red shirt emblazoned with an embroidered dragon, the image used on his namesake drink labels. His office, which resembles a chaotic museum replete with … [Read more...]

GOVERNMENT IN BRIEF 8/9

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Portugal, Sudan open consulates in HCM City The Portuguese Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City officially opened on September 7. Prominent among guests at the event were Portuguese Ambassador to Thailand and Vietnam, (resident in Thailand), Jorge Ryder Torres-Pereira and representatives from the municipal authorities. Afonso Carlos Neves Vieira, who was recognised as honourary Consul to HCM City, will serve as the only representative of Portugal to provide consular services to people in the city and work as a bridge to implement programmes on economic cooperation as well as cultural exchanges between the two countries, while promoting Portugal's image to the Vietnamese people and vice versa. … [Read more...]

Portugal, Sudan open consulates in HCM City

The Portuguese Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City officially opened on September 7. Prominent among guests at the event were Portuguese Ambassador to Thailand and Vietnam, (resident in Thailand), Jorge Ryder Torres-Pereira and representatives from the municipal authorities. Afonso Carlos Neves Vieira, who was recognised as honourary Consul to HCM City, will serve as the only representative of Portugal to provide consular services to people in the city and work as a bridge to implement programmes on economic cooperation as well as cultural exchanges between the two countries, while promoting Portugal's image to the Vietnamese people and vice versa. Earlier, the Sudanese Consulate in HCM City was inaugurated in the present of 30-year-old Tran Uyen Phuong, Deputy General Director of Tan Hiep Phat Group, as honourary Consul. Addressing the event, Sudanese Ambassador to Vietnam Adil Ibrahim Mustafa Ahmed said he believes that the honourary Consul will play an important role in … [Read more...]

Portugal, Sudan open consulates in HCM City

The Portuguese Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City officially opened on September 7. Prominent among guests at the event were Portuguese Ambassador to Thailand and Vietnam, (resident in Thailand), Jorge Ryder Torres-Pereira and representatives from the municipal authorities. Afonso Carlos Neves Vieira, who was recognised as honourary Consul to HCM City, will serve as the only representative of Portugal to provide consular services to people in the city and work as a bridge to implement programmes on economic cooperation as well as cultural exchanges between the two countries, while promoting Portugal’s image to the Vietnamese people and vice versa. Earlier, the Sudanese Consulate in HCM City was inaugurated in the present of 30-year-old Tran Uyen Phuong, Deputy General Director of Tan Hiep Phat Group, as honourary Consul. Addressing the event, Sudanese Ambassador to Vietnam Adil Ibrahim Mustafa Ahmed said he believes that the honourary Consul will play an important role in … [Read more...]

Sudan names honorary consul

The Republic of Sudan's Ambassador to Viet Nam, Adil Ibrahim Mustafa Ahmed, on Aug 25th, inaugurated his nation's honorary consulate in HCMCity and introduced the honorary consul, a Vietnamese citizen. Ms. Tran Uyen Phuong, deputy general director of Tan Hiep Phat Group, a major non-alcoholic beverage maker in Viet Nam, was appointed Sudanese honorary consul. She has been chosen among dozens of candidates who applied for the position. At the ceremony, the ambassador said the Sudanese Government had decided to appoint an honorary consul to Hochiminh city because of the huge potential for economic and cultural relations. Sudan is the third largest country in Africa with an area of 2.5 million square kilometres and a population of 39 million. The two countries established diplomatic relations in 1969 and Sudan opened an embassy in Ha Noi in 2009. … [Read more...]

Top brands saturate beverage market

The Ministry of Industry and Trade has said further investment in the beer and beverages industry should be avoided in the face of stiff competition from foreign and domestic beverage brands. Business Monitor International, a global business consultancy company, said the country’s beer, alcohol and beverages industry has seen high growth and would continue to do so. However, the ministry believes that the market is already highly competitive and any new players would face difficulty competing with the many beer and beverages companies that already exist. Despite the economic slump, several beer and beverage brands have seen strong growth. The Sai Gon Beer-Alcohol-Beverages Corporation (Sabeco), for example, saw a growth of 38.3 percent last year compared to 2007 and its counterpart in Hanoi, 28.3 percent. Beer accounted for 97.9 percent of alcoholic drinks, and its production is expected to increase by 50.7 percent by 2013. Many of the world’s big beer and alcoholic … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s Tan Hiep Phat hit by fresh fly-in-bottle dispute

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Vietnamese beverage maker Tan Hiep Phat Group and its flagship energy drink have grabbed national headlines again as a consumer found an alleged fly inside an unopened bottle of Number 1. On December 31, Tran Van Hung, of the north-central province of Nghe An, bought a Number 1 bottle from a local store and discovered a strange object inside when he was about to open it. The object looked like a fly, with such body parts as the head, wings and legs, as observed by a Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper correspondent, who brought the story to the media on Thursday. The energy drink was manufactured on October 9, 2015 and has one-year expiry. Tan Hiep Phat, headquartered in the southern province of Binh Duong, has commented on the issue, shortly after the case was widely covered by the local press. The company’s director of public relations, Nguyen Phan Huy Khoi, said it would be impossible for a fly to remain in its full shape after being kept in the bottle for more than three and a … [Read more...]

Imported fruit only for the rich

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VietNamNet Bridge - Imported fruit, which are advertised as clean and with no preservatives, have become the choice of the well-off people. Expensive Tet gifts sold well Hanoi: Rich men pay hundreds of USD for breakfast "Fruit imported from the USA or Australia," "completely safe", "no preservative substance" are all phrases familiar to customers of imported fruit shops in Lang Ha and Nguyen Son streets, Hanoi. … [Read more...]

Consumers warned against fake white cement

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The Vietnamese Consumer Protection Association recently announced alarming test results concerning white cement samples collected in Ho Chi Minh City and Vinh Long. According to tests held by the Third Center for Standards and Quality, 20 out of 22 tested cement samples were found to be a mixture of white cement and 35-60 percent calcium carbonate. The pressure endurance of the fake cement samples was 30-60 percent below the minimum standard pressure endurance requirements. Their hardening ability was also slower. After being mixed, the fake white cement is put in bags stamped with the names of well-known domestic and international white cement brands and brought onto the market. (Reported by D.T-C.N - Translated by The Vinh) … [Read more...]