Two Vietnamese CEOs named as top Asian ‘Power Businesswomen’

Update: September, 26/2019 - 11:41


Vietjet CEO Nguyễn Thị Phương Thảo. Photo VNA

HÀ NỘI — The chief executive officers of two Vietnamese companies – budget carrier Vietjet and dairy firm NutiFood – have been named among the 25 most powerful businesswomen in Asia.

The Forbes’s 2019 listing, which honours women who play a significant role in shaping Asia’s business landscape, named Vietjet CEO Nguyễn Thị Phương Thảo as the only woman to have started and run her own commercial airline.

As such, she epitomises the values of the power businesswomen in this issue – entrepreneurs who defy stereotypes and break down barriers, according to Forbes.

Thảo is the country’s first self-made woman billionaire with a current net worth of US$2.5 billion, the magazine said, adding that she is also the wealthiest self-made woman in Southeast Asia.

From just a handful of domestic routes when it launched in 2007, Vietjet has slowly expanded to 80 aircraft servicing 120 destinations.

 “Our strategy is to expand to any regional market within a radius of 2,500 kilometres,” she says, “so we can create bases that cover half of the world's population," Forbes cited Thao as saying.

This year’s Forbes listing also named NutiFood CEO Trần Thị Lệ who, with her husband, has turned the company into Việt Nam’s leading nutrition products producer, with sales of VNĐ9.5 trillion ($408 million) last year.


NutiFood CEO Trần Thị Lệ. Photo

Currently, NutiFood runs four factories in the country that produce mostly dairy products for baby formula and health supplements. It has recently established a joint venture with Japan’s Asahi to provide baby products in Việt Nam under the Wakodo NutiFood brand.

Other women who made the list are: Jenny Lee, managing partner of US-China-based GGV Capital; Tan Hooi Ling, Chief Operating Officer of Singapore-based Grab; and Anna Fang, CEO of Chinese venture capital ZhenFund. — VNS