Viet Nam News
CMC Corporation, one of the leading Vietnamese ICT group, recently announced its “Go Global” strategy to expand to foreign countries, starting with Japan. Chairman/CEO of the corporation Nguyễn Trung Chính and CMC Japan’s CEO Kumeda Masakuni spoke with Việt Nam News reporter Yến Vy about the company’s global strategy and the Vietnamese ICT industry.
Nguyễn Trung Chính, Chairman/CEO of CMC Corporation
CMC Corporation recently announced its strategy to “Go Global”, could you introduce the strategy to Việt Nam News readers?
CMC Global was established in March this year with the aim of promoting the export of software and IT products. We want to introduce our best products to international markets. Previously, we had worked with many foreign partners, but recently, we determined to go to the global market by ourselves. CMC Global will be the face of our group.
The way we go in will not only be software outsourcing but IT services and products. In the past years, we have co-operated with many foreign partners, including Japan, South Korea, Singapore, France, Germany and the United States (US).
For example, we built labs for Vietnamese customers of IBM Việt Nam. We were also chosen by Honda Việt Nam over many other competitors in providing SAP ERP services. This has proved our quality as Japanese companies are mostly customers with high demand.
Through these experiences, we are more confident to step outside the border of Việt Nam and go to other countries.
On November 7, CMC Japan will officially open in Yokohama. We received an investment licence in August with a total investment capital of US$2 million. We expect to increase this to $5 million or $10 million in the future.
By 2020, CMC Global intends to have 1,000 to 1,500 employees. We also expect that CMC Global will bring us a revenue similar to that of the domestic market.
After the Japanese market, CMC will continue to expand market to more ASEAN countries, including Singapore, Asian countries such as South Korea then to Europe and the US.
CMC will inaugurate its first branch in Japan this month. Why did the corporation choose Japan as its first market to enter?
A report from Gartner last year showed that the value of outsourcing the market of Japan was about $30 billion per year. Therefore, there are many opportunities for technology companies like us to invest.
We approached the Japanese market 10 years ago, but were only doing outsourcing. Our determination was not drastic enough at that time. Therefore, the success and revenue was small. As I mentioned, we have had many Japanese partners before, but we have not had any official companies based in the locality.
Having a company based in the locality, it is easier for us to connect to Japanese customers. For CMC Japan, not only Vietnamese, we even employ foreign human resources from Japan and China.
Being a corporation managing more than 2,000 ICT technicians in Việt Nam. How do you evaluate the level of Vietnamese ICT staffs?
The country’s ICT human resource is lacking in both quality and quantity. To enhance ICT’s human resources here, there should be policies boosting more resources to invest in education, including both individuals and enterprises. We also need to renovate teaching methods. Vietnamese students need more chances to practise in reality.
There should be more linkages between universities and enterprises so that universities can produce staffs that meet the demand of enterprises while enterprises can invest in facilities for schools. We built a research and development (R&D) institute, an innovation centre and we also have policies to promote creativeness.
To ensure staff for our global market of up to 1,000-1,500 people, we built our own R&D institute so that we can train our own people. In the future, we hope to have more connections with universities and colleges so that we can recruit more employees meeting our demands after they graduate.
Besides the R&D Institute, we have CMC Innovation Centre, which is a place to connect and share ideas. We often organise meetings to share research results. We also have an innovative fund, just like angel capital.
In 2008-2009, we invested in a group, which has now become CMC InfoSec, a leading security company in Việt Nam.
Could you tell us about the newest achievements of the corporation as well as its development strategy. What are the key fields that the group wants to promote, especially in the context of the 4.0 industry?
At the moment, we are building an organisation in a popular creative model that many companies in the world are applying, such as Google.
In addition, we are transferring traditional service products to digitalisation. We will focus on building a cloud platform for enterprise customers.
Fintech platform is one of the fields we are interested in. We are working with FE Credit and banks.
In the context of Internet of Things development, there are more and more risks from information sercurity. Therefore, CMC is also strengthening investment to enhance capacity of cyber security.
Overcoming 24 years of building and developing, CMC is now one of the leading ICT companies in Việt Nam. Being the leader of such a successful company, what is your advice for Vietnamese ICT enterprises in the integration period?
My advice for Vietnamese ICT companies or start-ups is that they should determine goals and firmly pursue them.
One of the advantages of the ICT industry over other industries is that there is no border on the Internet environment. A company or a start-up doesn’t need a large investment for space or facility. They just need one or more computers and work at simple places, even at home or at a coffee shop.
In addition, it is easy to approach users worldwide by uploading products on iOS or Android platforms. Thousands to millions users can see your products.
The importance is that if your products are good, it may be easy to go viral and many people in the world will know about this. Flappy Bird is a typical example.
Kumeda Masakuni, CEO of CMC Japan
CMC Corporation will inaugurate its branch in Japan. Could you share the goal of the project?
Leveraging over 24 years of experience in the field of ICT and more than 10 years of outsourcing experience of CMC Corporation, CMC Japan was established with the goal of providing products and services with the best quality to customers in the Japanese market. We believe that with the professional experiences that meet global standards, we will meet the needs of Japanese enterprises in the areas of technology, automation, services and IT integrated solutions.
Having had experiences for a long time in the field of ICT and worked with many multinational companies such as Oracle, IBM, CISCO, NetOne or EMC Japan, what are the reasons for you to choose to work for CMC?
I am a kind of person who likes challenges. With CMC, I realise both opportunities and challenges. Before accepting the position as CEO of CMC Japan, I had the opportunity to visit and work at CMC Corporation and its member companies such as CMC Soft or CMC Telecom. My appreciation for CMC is not only a unit with 24 years of experience, one of the top 2 ICT enterprises in Việt Nam but also a young, innovative and disciplined organisation. The challenge is a market like Japan, but I believe CMC Japan and I will have many opportunities with the support of CMC parent company and its 10 member companies.
With your experiences, what are your plans for the development of CMC Japan?
I will try to make the most of my 30-year experience in the field of ICT in Japan. I will wholeheartedly build and develop CMC Japan in line with CMC’s globalisation strategy and soon become a leading company in providing ICT solutions and services in this market.
How do you evaluate CMC Corporation in particular and Vietnamese ICT companies in general?
I think that Vietnamese IT enterprises have good capacity, especially plentiful, young and responsible human resources. As for CMC, I realise that this is a technology group with strong internal strength with sustainable development and especially has a core competitive competency that is human. CMC people are young technologists who possess the core values of creativity, professionalism and teamwork.
Japan is a potential market to Vietnamese ICT businesses. In your opinion, what are the strengths and difficulties of Vietnamese companies when approaching and developing in the Japanese market?
In my opinion, the strength of Vietnamese enterprises when approaching and developing in the Japanese market, is the abundant human resources. Japan currently lacks more than 100,000 IT engineers. The number is expected to reach 230,000 by 2020, and 590,000 by 2030.
Therefore, there are many opportunities for Vietnamese businesses to provide human resources for the market. However, the difficulty is to improve the quality of human resources to ensure they can maximise their ability of deployment and creativity.
The second strong point is that Vietnamese businesses have good capacity, qualified and comprehensive products and services, which are fully capable of competing with businesses in this market.
However, language and culture barriers are also difficult and challenging for Vietnamese businesses, which requires them to try and improve. – VNS
CMC is one of the leading technology groups in Việt Nam with 24 years of establishment and development. It is organised on the model of parent-member company with 10 members operating throughout Việt Nam and many countries in the world.
CMC has confirmed its position in domestic market and moved to regional and international markets through key business activities such as: system integration, software service, telecommunication-Internet, production and distribution of ICT products and e-trade.
CMC is present in 63 cities and provinces nationwide. The group has co-operation with 21 countries in the world. There are 2,200 IT technicians working for the group.
In 2016, the group earned US$193 million, up 19 per cent compared to the same period of the previous year.
The corporation’s revenue in the first six months this year is estimated at $117 million, a year-on-year increase of 13 per cent.