Goooood morning! It is day 8 of my Vietnam adventure. Today was a busy day with two back-to-back site visits to VSIP and II-VI. VSIP is a company that builds industrial parks and then integrates them into communities that allow their customers and workers to enjoy a more people-centered, environmentally healthy place to live, learn, laugh, and play. They do this by building housing, restaurants, roads, and hospitals within their industrial park to make it more of a community. The company VSIP is the product of an agreement between the governments of Vietnam and Singapore, which attempts to increase businesses in Vietnam. While it’s prevalent for foreign businesses to partner with local businesses, it’s rarer to see two foreign governments ban together. After the presentation, they showed us this massive model of their industrial parks, and it was amazing how planned out and organized it was. One industrial park can take twenty years to make because VSIP handles everything from the erecting the buildings to the planning the sewage treatment. I think that industrial parks will help increase foreign investment into Vietnam because companies like VSIP make things so convenient for corporations looking to invest. They provide their customers with investment licenses, legal assistance, and operational support to make it a one-stop service for all of their clients’ needs. Overall this was a very cool site visit that I enjoyed because I find the whole concept of government-made Industrial parks very efficient. In a different life, I’d be very interested in planning one myself, but for now I’ll stick to the business of business.
The other site visit that we did was to II-VI, which is a company that manufactures devices that cool and maintain the temperature so that products do not overheat. II-VI was founded in 1971 and are now the global leaders of engineered materials. While this company has headquarters in Pennsylvania, they chose to locate a factory in Vietnam because of the cheap labor and the great tax incentives for businesses. Some problems for the company are that they are unable to expand their product mix because their machines are so precise that they can not modify them to accomodate technological updates. Also, since each cooler is custom built for each customer, further expansion of their product line would be too labor intensive. However, they have some predesigned coolers for anyone to buy. I found it interesting that unlike in the U.S., Vietnamese workers specialize in specific areas and are not expected to know multiple areas of expertise. Because of this specialization, training can take up to a year. After the presentation, we took a tour of their factory where we saw how they made the coolers. While I thought the process of manufacturing the coolers was interesting, I know that one day was enough for me. I am very happy remaining on the business side of things.
Right now I’m back at the hotel getting ready to go out to get Korean Barbecue for dinner! I’ll talk to you all tomorrow, bye!