We launched Vietcetera in April and only recently kicked into gear, publishing on a daily basis starting in September.
What’s in store for 2017? We’ve got a new lineup of profiles, features, interviews. We’re planning a few trips abroad to interview overseas Vietnamese. If you know anybody, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll also make our way up to Hanoi and Da Nang. And did we mention that we recently opened a cafe in Ho Chi Minh City?
Now that we’re reaching the end of the year, we rounded up the most popular untold stories of the new Vietnam that our readers have enjoyed on Vietcetera. Here’s a look back at some of our most popular stories of 2016 and our editor’s comments about what we learned from meeting these movers and shakers of the new Vietnam.
Helly Tong and The Yen Concept
Helly is a local-born Vietnamese woman, doing business and making her name almost exclusively in Vietnam. The amount of English content and coverage about her story is close to zero. So when we met up to tell her story, we immediately recognized her story as the quintessential new Vietnam. Globally minded, yet uniquely focused on Vietnam.
A Cut Above, Hurricane Barber in Ho Chi Minh
The owner of Hurricane Barber, Bi, had one simple mission: if you want it done the way you want it, do it yourself. And so he did. Hurricane Barber’s more-hipster vibe, yet humble, original, and well-intentioned roots, is why they have me coming back as a regular customer. I’m very lucky to have finally found my barber in this city.
Kim Lee is Turning Tables and Turning Heads as a DJ and Model
Kim Lee is one of those overseas Vietnamese that is able to confidently keep one foot in Vietnam and the other in America. Based in California, she still does shows and appearances in Vietnam, and best of all she’s fluent in Vietnamese.
The Vape Shop that Gives Hope to Vaping in Vietnam
In exploring the subcultures of Vietnam, we found Jon Lee at DJ’s Vapes. With cigarette smoking still an ever-present part of Vietnamese culture, Jon has found a niche with vaping. And despite focusing on a small crowd, Jon’s story still ranks among the strongest and most read on our website.
Sylvia Nguyen: Modernizing Vietnam’s Hospitality Vision
Sylvia is a very well-traveled woman from Hanoi with a strong perspective about Vietnamese levels of hospitality and service. While it still lags behind other countries, we’re also hoping that Vietnam can catch up in the next few years.
How the Team Behind the Iconic Pizza 4P’s Brand Plans to IPO by 2020
The Masukos from Pizza 4P’s have put together an amazing company from the ground up in Vietnam. Their mission is more than just making the best pizza in town. Their story of coming from Japanese corporate backgrounds to food and beverage in Vietnam is one of the most inspiring business stories that we’ve come across.
How Quan Ut Ut and BiaCraft are Reenergizing American Food in Vietnam
Two of our favorite restaurants in town have done a lot to bring American food back into the discussion for culinary diversity in Ho Chi Minh City, during a time when American food is being overlooked by other types of cuisine. Albin Desforges (pictured) shared with us his team’s philosophy and vision for their restaurants.
Darren Chew & District Eight: Starting a Furniture Design Revolution that is Going Global
Darren’s work in bringing industrial furniture design to the forefront in Vietnam started with his work at L’Usine, one of Vietnam’s most iconic food brands. Now he’s bringing Vietnam design and craftsmanship with his company, District Eight. If you’re wondering, yes we would love to stock our entire apartment with his team’s work.
Nancy Le: An Interview with the Woman Behind Lifestyle Brand Nosbyn
One of our earliest People of Vietcetera interviews, meeting Nancy and her team was a fantastic introduction to the local fashion brand scene. Nosbyn started with very little knowledge of the industry or how fashion works, but Nancy’s vision to see what was missing in the market has lead to Nosbyn’s establishment as a local fashion favorite.
Minh Bui, Beta Corp: How this Entrepreneur Does Business Differently in Vietnam
Minh’s business building experience was a fun and unique perspective to share with our readers. Most Vietnamese companies would shy away from the idea of inviting anyone outside of family to support their businesses, but Minh has approached business building in an entirely new way. A must read for any aspiring entrepreneur in Vietnam.
Launching Uber in Vietnam, an Interview with Adrian Latortue
Adrian is one of very few foreigners who can speak Vietnamese fluently. Getting his perspective as a foreigner who works closely with Vietnamese people was an exciting story to share. We look forward to seeing what Adrian will do next!
WORK Saigon: An Interview with Laure Chevallier
Laure’s journey to Vietnam started with almost no knowledge of the market, yet she and her boyfriend Tuan recognized a need for their flagship base, WORK Saigon in Ho Chi Minh City. One of the first coworking spaces in Vietnam, learning about her adventure in Vietnam was a fun story to share with our readers.