Prof. Dr. Tran Ngoc Tho, Member, National Financial & Monetary Policy Advisory Council, University of Economics, Ho Chi Minh City
|AWS is supporting enterprises’ digital transformation through its AWS Partner Network|
COVID-19 made serious socio-economic impacts during 2020, but the pandemic has had a forcing function at many companies to really think about how they operate differently and how they work with customers and consumers. In this situation, technology adaption is an inevitable trend with many success stories.
TechX, a technology startup focusing on cloud computing services, is among the technology solution providers gaining great success thanks to the technology transformation.
TechX was established in February 2020. Six months later, it became an Advanced Consulting Partner of AWS – a leading technology solution firm. With the support of AWS, and especially AWS Partner Network (APN), TechX has now grown from zero to a total of over 100 employees after one year of establishment, with two offices in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
Also impressively, the TechX customer network reaches 150, including 100 small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), with many in the banking and finance sector, and powerful groups. In 2020, TechX made revenue of $4 million.
|Hong Tran, CEO TechX|
Hong Tran, CEO TechX, who has 15 years of experience in the IT industry and provides solutions for banks, financial institutions, and powerful groups in Vietnam, recalled about three years ago, when technology was nowhere near meeting demands in Vietnam. Although customers were willing to fork out millions of US dollars a year on IT, tech firms could not expand their network of clients or improve customers’ experience.
“At that time, I met with a representative of AWS in Vietnam and learned more about AWS philosophy, which was different from other technology firms at the time. AWS focuses on real customer obsession. For example, they work closely with customers in Vietnam, engaging them in daily conversation and sharing experiences so that partners can develop from zero – the way TechX did,” Hong said.
AWS’ APN enables partners to provide customers with a free trial of its entire suite of services. APN also commits to being a long-term, useful partner for customers, asking them to pay for AWS only as long as they make a profit.
APN also grows with partners. Hong admitted, “In the past, when we worked with other partners, it often took us a week or even a month to get a reply. Now with AWS, TechX has immediate support.”
Moreover, APN has Go-to-Market support which helps partners with products development, marketing activities, and free trial.
“We are striving to help our partners grow and become as successful as they can. We have personally witnessed partners like TechX grow from zero employees to now well over 50 and probably even more. We will continue to help them scale their deep cloud expertise,” said Stanley Chan, head of Technology Partners, Asia-Pacific and Japan, AWS.
TechX is taking the next steps in its digital journey. In June 2021, it plans to complete Migration Competency, by July complete Managed Services, and by September complete Data & Analytics Competency, thus enabling it to become a Consulting Partner of AWS in 2021, to have a 200 per cent increase in revenue in 2021, and to increase the number of SMB customers to 5,000 by the end of the year.
How can partners benefit from AWS Partner Network?
|Stanley Chan, head of Technology Partners, APJ, AWS|
TechX is a typical example of how an enterprise benefits from APN. To date, over 90 per cent of Fortune 100 companies are using APN partner solutions and services. Customers like Masan, Vietjetair, and multinationals with local presence in Vietnam like Samsung and Vodafone all leverage AWS, together with a number of AWS partners to realise their cloud transformation priorities.
For partners beginning their journey starting with AWS by building and developing their practice or technology, APN offers training tools and assigns resources to help them get up and going very quickly.
Next, APN works with partners to identify their areas of strength, where they can specialise, and to differentiate themselves in the market and in the AWS sales organisation.
Next is support to partners through marketing awareness and going to market to drive new business together via digital campaigns, online tools, and sales support.
APN also offers a broad set of resources, tools, and expertise to help its partners develop the right level of marketing based on their needs and the types of clients they target. Some of these are digital, and some of these are agency based and some of these are in person, depending on the customer strategy and partners’ growth strategies as well.
Stanley Chan said, “One example is our upcoming AWS online summit for ASEAN scheduled for May 18 and 19. It will be a large-scale virtual conference where we have customers, partners, and AWS teams share with and inspire each other with their journey to cloud and their digital transformation stories.”
According to Stanley Chan, much of the growth in the number of APN members is actually happening in Asia. According to International Data Corporation (IDC),the Asia-Pacific market for cloud is estimated to reach over $80 billion in the next several years.
“We still find that Vietnam is an emerging and growing market. We are looking at driving additional enablement, including training to make sure that the companies are confident and understand how they can use cloud,” he elaborated.
Great importance is given to how new innovative use cases can be developed, specifically around analytics to better understand their existing business. “On the technology side, we actually just had our public sector general manager do a briefing to the Vietnamese press about EdStart. This is an initiative where we are looking to engage the younger population through technology and to use education software and other technology platforms to really train and upskill the population of Vietnam to be cloud-ready. So that is another big investment that we are making to ensure that Vietnam is cloud-ready and maybe cloud-first,” he noted.
APN is a global partner programme focusing on helping partners build a successful business by providing them with valuable business, technical, and marketing support. Today, it has tens of thousands of partners around the world, with over 60 per cent of those partners actually headquartered outside of the US.
Customer or enterprise large and small, APN enables them to identify high-quality partners who can deliver value-added services and solutions on AWS.
APN has two types of partnerships. The first is consulting partners. They include firms that provide IT consulting services, system integration, application development, and management services. They include TechX.
The second is technology partners. These partners are software vendors and software as a service (SaaS) providers, operating systems and database vendors. Here in Vietnam, APN have partners like FPT Telecom, and KIU Global, a business management software platform provider, as well as large global technology partners like salesforce.com , Cisco, Siemens, and thousands of others.
Julen Lopetegui’s side dominated the game but were dealt a late body blow when Athletic counter attacked and striker Inaki Williams showed composure to lift the ball into the top corner. The loss left Sevilla fourth in the standings on 70 points with four games to play, four behind second-placed Real Madrid and third-placed Barcelona and six from leaders Atletico Madrid.
* Parma’s three-year stay in Serie A ended on Monday when they were relegated following a 1-0 defeat by Torino. Parma’s fifth successive defeat left them 12 points adrift of 17th-placed Cagliari. Parma, who have 20 points, follow Crotone in being relegated.
* Mark Selby beat fellow Englishman Shaun Murphy to claim a fourth world snooker title on Monday. Selby, nicknamed the Jester from Leicester, held his nerve in a tense evening session to triumph 18-15 and claim the title for the first time since 2017.
* Striker Michail Antonio scored twice on his return from injury to fire West Ham United to a 2-1 win at Burnley on Monday. The victory lifted the Hammers to fifth place with 58 points from 34 games, three behind London rivals Chelsea in the race for the final Champions League spot.
* Relegation-threatened West Bromwich Albion fought back to claim a 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday but failure to win the match at The Hawthorns moved them closer to dropping out of the Premier League. The point moved second-from-bottom West Brom to 26 points, still 10 away from the safety zone with only four games remaining.
* Paris St Germain will make a late decision on whether forward Kylian Mbappe will be available to face Manchester City in the second leg of the Champions League semi-final, coach Mauricio Pochettino said on Monday. Mbappe, PSG’s top scorer this season with 25 goals in Ligue 1 and eight in Europe, missed the 2-1 victory over Lens on Saturday due to a calf injury.
* Struggling Hertha Berlin returned to action after a two-week coronavirus quarantine with a 1-1 draw at in-form Mainz 05 on Monday as they battle to avoid relegation. Hertha are 17th with 27 points from 29 matches and have two games in hand. Bottom club Schalke 04 are already relegated.
* The Spanish Grand Prix will allow 1,000 circuit members to attend Sunday’s Formula One race after local COVID-19 regulations are eased, organisers said on Monday. The May 9 race is the fourth round of the season and a home grand prix for Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz and Alpine’s double world champion Fernando Alonso.
* Paris St Germain midfielder Idrissa Gueye will serve a two-match European suspension for his straight red card in last week’s Champions League semi-final first-leg against Manchester City, European soccer’s governing body UEFA said on Monday. Gueye was dismissed in the 77th minute in Paris for a reckless challenge on Ilkay Gundogan as City came from behind to secure a 2-1 victory in Paris.
* The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship next month in Johns Creek, Georgia, will be contested with approximately 8,000 spectators on-site each day at Atlanta Athletic Club, the PGA of America said on Monday.
* Valencia sacked coach Javi Gracia a day after the team slipped to within six points of the relegation zone in La Liga, the club said in a statement on Monday. Spaniard Gracia, who took over at the end of last season, was fired following the team’s 3-2 home defeat by Barcelona on Sunday, their sixth consecutive league game without a win.
* The second-tier AFC Cup’s group stage matches for clubs in the east zone have been postponed to June due to challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Asian Football Confederation said on Monday. The Group J matches were initially scheduled to be held in Hong Kong (China) from May 14-20 but will now be played from June 23-29.
Sadio Mane scored twice for the English champions while Georginio Wijnaldum and Mohamed Salah added one each to cancel out a fine goal by Villa’s 17-year old striker Louie Barry, who netted on his senior debut for the Midlands side.
* Borussia Moenchengladbach battled back from two goals down to stun champions Bayern Munich 3-2 on Friday (Jan 8), with a double from Jonas Hofmann and another from Florian Neuhaus.
* Former Chelsea winger Damien Duff has stepped down from his role as one of Ireland’s assistant coaches, the country’s football association (FAI) said. The 41-year-old, who was capped 100 times by Ireland, was appointed to manager Stephen Kenny’s staff in August last year alongside Keith Andrews.
* Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka will join Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic in playing a pre-Australian Open warm-up exhibition in Adelaide after serving their quarantine in the South Australian city, Tennis Australia (TA) said on Saturday. The “A Day at the Drive” event will take place at the city’s Memorial Drive Tennis Centre on Jan. 29, a week before the delayed Grand Slam gets underway at Melbourne Park.
* Sergio Aguero could make his first Manchester City start since October when the club face Birmingham in the FA Cup third round on Sunday (Jan 10). Aguero, City’s record goalscorer, has made just nine appearances so far this season, with six of those from the bench, following a series of fitness problems.
* The Premier League on Friday (Jan 8) issued clubs new measures to combat the spread of COVID-19, threatening disciplinary action against players who breach training or matchday protocols. In a letter to all 20 top flight clubs, the league reiterated that players should not hug each other and shirt-swapping should stop in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus.
* Juventus said on Friday (Jan 8) that Netherlands defender Matthijs De Ligt has tested positive for COVID-19, the third player from the Serie A champions to test positive this week. Brazilian defender Alex Sandro returned a positive result on Monday, while winger Juan Cuadrado tested positive on Tuesday.
* Olympic long jump silver medallist Luvo Manyonga has been provisionally suspended for anti-doping whereabouts failures, the Athletics Integrity Unit said on Friday. The South African has been issued a notice of charge and could face up to two years suspension if found guilty, which would rule him out of the Olympic Games in Tokyo that are scheduled to start on July 23.
* Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said goalkeeper Sergio Romero and defender Marcos Rojo are free to leave the club in the January transfer window. Solskjaer said the Argentine duo, who have not played this season, will not have their contracts extended beyond the end of the season.
* The English Football League, which governs the three divisions below the Premier League, said on Friday that 112 individuals tested positive for COVID-19 in the latest round of testing. This week’s testing included 66 EFL clubs that will play in the FA Cup third round, while the remaining six clubs which did not feature will be tested before their league games.
* Belgian Kirsten Flipkens retired against top-seeded American Sofia Kenin at the WTA 500 event in Abu Dhabi after suffering a freak left ankle injury during the second round match on Friday.
* Ajax Amsterdam have paid a club record 22.5 million euros to sign striker Sebastien Haller from West Ham United on a four-and-a-half-year contract, the Dutch league leaders announced on Friday. The 26-year-old returns to the Dutch league, where he scored 51 goals for Utrecht between 2014 and 2017, and revives his relationship with Ajax coach Erik ten Hag, in charge of Utrecht when the French-born striker played there.
* Eight Indonesian badminton players who breached the integrity regulations of the sport’s governing body were slapped with suspensions ranging from three years to life, said the Badminton World Federation (BWF) in a press release on Friday (Jan 8).
|British Prime Minister Boris Johnson wears a Welsh flag face mask and gives a thumbs up as he visits Marco’s cafe in Barry Island during the Senedd election campaign on May 3, 2021 in Barry, south Wales. The 2021 Senedd election will be the sixth held since devolution and will take place on Thursday May 6, 2021. 60 members of the Senedd Cymru, the Welsh Parliament, will be chosen by voters.(Matthew Horwood / POOL / AFP)|
The new labs at the Porton Down research facility in southwest England will be used to test the effectiveness of vaccines against variants and speed up their deployment, according to Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
“We’ve backed UK science from the very start of this pandemic and this multi-million pound funding for a state-of-the-art vaccine testing facility at Porton Down will enable us to further future-proof the country from the threat of new variants,” he said.
“This announcement is yet another critical way we will build back better to protect the country over the coming months and years,” he added.
Porton Down is the secretive army base near Salisbury in south west England that identified the nerve agent used to poison a Russian ex-spy in 2018.
The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory — its official name — employs 3,000 scientists across a sprawling rural site.
It was founded in 1916 to counter German chemical attacks in World War I, which initially involved chlorine and then mustard gas and phosgene.
New funding will increase the site’s current blood testing capacity from 700 to 3,000 samples a week, enabling scientists to measure more quickly the levels of antibodies that are generated by the vaccines.
“The expanded testing capacity at Porton Down will ensure the UK stays one step ahead of the virus and is in the best possible position to respond to new threats from COVID-19 as quickly as possible,” the government said.
Britain has been one of the worst-hit countries in the world by the pandemic, recording more than 127,500 deaths.
But restrictions are being eased following a successful vaccine rollout, with daily deaths down into single figures.
Leading scientists are still concerned that a new variant resistant to current vaccines may lead to a new surge.
“A new variant that can escape the current vaccines is the greatest risk of a third wave,” said Jenny Harries, chief executive at the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).
“This new investment will help us stay one step ahead of the virus by doubling our capacity to test vaccine effectiveness against emerging variants.”
|Banking stock prices are on the rise|
The VN-Index expanded by 1.97 percent to end the March 31 session at 1,191.44 points, an increase of 79.83 percent compared to a year ago, while the VNAllshare reached 1,158.99 points, a year-on-year increase of 95.94 percent. The VN30-Index grew by 1.93 percent to end at 1,196.24 points, or 95.86 percent higher than the figure recorded at the same time last year.
In March, more than 14.78 billion shares were traded on the HoSE at the value of over VND355.56 trillion. The market liquidity improved compared to the previous month, with average 642.6 million shares worth VND15.45 trillion sold in each transaction, an increase of 15.9 percent in volume and 11.33 percent in value.
Foreign players’ transactions reached nearly VND69 trillion in March, accounting for 9.7 percent of the total, with net selling of more than VND12.25 trillion worth of stocks.
As many as 553 codes were traded on the HoSE by the end of the first quarter, including 397 stocks, three close-end fund certificates, seven exchange-traded funds (ETF), 114 covered warrants (CW), and 32 bonds.
Increased value of banking stocks
Many commercial banks, such as OCB, SeABank and BacABank, have listed shares on the stock exchanges. Many banking stocks, such as BAB, VIB, MSB, OCB and VPB, increased by 30 percent in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period last year. In particular, stocks of large banks, such as CTG, VCB and TCB, saw an average increase of 13-25 percent during the reviewed period.
By the end of March, market capitalization of 26 banks listed on the HoSE, the Hanoi Stock Exchange (HNX) and the UPCoM reached more than VND1,400 trillion, an increase of nearly VND150 trillion compared to the end of 2020.
According to a JP Morgan report, Vietnamese banks offer the best combination of growth and return on equity (ROE) in the ASEAN bloc, leading to expectations of 8-42 percent increases in stock prices this year and even higher over the next three years.
Dang Tran Phuc, chairman of the AzFin Vietnam Joint Stock Company, said the banking sector is now well positioned to fend off risks and take advantage of economic recovery in 2021 to provide a springboard for revenue and profit growth.