Viet Nam News
ReBooks, the first online book exchange in Việt Nam, was recently been created by R Books Co Ltd and Phoenix Global Wealth Management. It aims to introduce more foreign books to Việt Nam and domestic books to the world. The founder of ReBooks and the general director of R Books Co Ltd, Phạm Thị Ngọc Châu, talks with Nhật Lệ.
Inner Sanctum: Why have you chosen to invest in books and education?
They are two fields that I’m much interested in and bring much meaning to life. After graduating from university, I worked for a bank and have gained certain success in the financial field after 10 years. At the same time, I also work on education. Specifically, I invite foreign speakers to Việt Nam to deliver speeches about their financial experience. It originates from my passion so I put all my heart into each product.
Inner Sanctum: How have you pursued your dream?
My passion for books has significantly affected my decision in joining the publishing sector. I have loved books since I was small. Reading books every day has become a habit. Since sixth grade, I have read from three to five books a day.
During my student years, I had a chance to encounter more interesting books, starting by Đời Thay Đổi Khi Ta Thay Đổi (Happiness Now). Since then, I started to go deeper into kinds of books of my concerns, particularly books for thoughts, economics and finances.
Thanks to my family’s tradition, especially influence of my mothers’ business ability and my father’s passion for books, I decided to establish a book company after harvesting certain success in finance. It is primarily for commercial purposes, by selling books wholesale. Additionally, I aim at international markets, e-books and publishing international books.
When I met Peter Phạm, a financial specialist, he had already had an idea about publishing international books in Việt Nam’s market. We then had discussions on the potentials of Việt Nam’s book market. Vietnamese authors write very well but we realise that not many Vietnamese books have been either available on the international market or translated into English. We have therefore joined hands to work in that field.
Inner Sanctum: Why are you not focused on books about finance but also on thoughts, culinary or travel?
In my point of view, no matter what kinds of books, all sellers prioritise the target of selling them well. The issue is not selling what we like but to sell what readers want. We are studying what global readers need, based on topics that meet their tastes, not just of Vietnamese only. The online book exchange is developed not only in Việt Nam but also in international market. We want to do something different, expecting to gain more appropriate judgement on Việt Nam’s book publication. Vietnamese are good in various fields, and also in book publication, I believe.
Besides, I’m working with several Vietnamese authors to publish their books in English internationally. Whether the books are sold well or not still depends on global readers’ tastes.
Inner Sanctum: Can you please specify the kinds of exported books?
We will publish those of international publishing houses’ and readers’ concern, including economics, finances, thinking, culinary arts, travel and even short prose.
Inner Sanctum: Why have you oriented the online book exchange towards the international market instead of Việt Nam?
It’s normal issue. First, international market is much larger than Việt Nam’s. Second, with available advantages and relationships, we will follow the path that is a bit different from that of other publishers in the country, opening a new door of opportunity for Vietnamese authors. Vietnamese might not be familiar with exporting books internationally, which Phoenix Global Wealth Management is capable of. Third, effectiveness is taken into consideration in doing anything. Introducing Việt Nam’s books into the world not only helps the authors have higher income but also raises national pride. Additionally, I think that in order to develop in any field, it is necessary to maximise advantages and strengths.
Inner Sanctum: What is your meaning of life?
To me, family is the most important and the place to return. I’m lucky to have a supportive husband who want me to fulfil my will and aspiration because he knows that only when I’m happy with myself could I bring happiness to others, especially my little family.
Besides family, I also want to focus on developing self values. Money is just part of it, while self values cannot be measured. Life is short so I want to live in the most comfortable and happy way.
Many people have asked me how I could spare time for family while managing so much work. Actually, my working time is as long as others, from 8am to 5pm. If I want to have more time for work, I will spend the time in midnight. Should there be a distinction between a person working much work and a person working much time?
As a woman, I see that working has helped me to expand relationships, knowledge and creativity in both career and life. More importantly, by pursuing the job that I love, I will lead a happier and more meaningful life. VNS