Vietnam’s Vingroup targets global markets with smartphones in tech shift

HO CHI MINH CITY (reuters) – Vingroup, Vietnam’s top listed company by market value, underlined the technology ambitions on Friday with the launch of the first smartphones, which it plans to sell all over the world.

A few introduce Vingroup the v-smart phones during the launch ceremony in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam December 14, 2018. REUTERS/Mai Nguyen

As soon as a real estate and retail focused conglomerate, Vingroup in Vietnam, the first full-fledged domestic carmaker two months ago with a company with the name Vinfast.

The four v-smart phone models are made in the factory in Vietnam’s northern city of Haiphong, with a production capacity of 5 million phones per year in the first phase.

“If Vinfast is the beginning of our industrial enterprises, v-smart is the starting point for Vingroup for the development of an ecosystem of electronics and smart products,” Nguyen Viet Quang, Vingroup’s chief executive and the vice-chairman, said.

The Vietnamese company wants the sales of the smartphones and other smart products to all continents and has identified Russia, and Spain, where it owns 51 percent of the Spanish technology company BQ, as potential markets in Europe.

In Vietnam, which has a population of 95 million, Vingroup will be looking to win market share from Samsung and Apple with its new smartphones.

Vietnam is the largest smartphone production base for Samsung, while the keys Apple-supplier Foxconn is also considering the setting up of a factory.

The four v-smart phones launched on Friday to make use of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 435, 430 660 chips and Google’s Android operating system.

They will go on sale in Vietnam from Saturday with a price range of 3.39-6.59 million dong ($145.57-$282.99).

Qualcomm and Vingroup technology unit Vinsmart also signed a multimode global license deal on Friday.

“We will not stop at smartphones, and will gradually out of other smart products,” VinSmart the chief executive Tran Minh Trung said at the launch.

Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Alexander Smith

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