Persistence Pays Of For Carl Bro

“Carl Bro entered the Vietnamese market many years ago and the growth and development we are seeing today is the result of many years of experience,” Branch director Bent Rahbek starts out.
There is a strong competition among technical consultancy companies like Carl Bro in Vietnam, but the largest challenge for the Danish-run company has been to find the right partners and contacts and to receive the investment license status, which Carl Bro Vietnam Ltd. however received as the first foreign consultancy company in Vietnam.
According to Bent Rahbek two things were important when Carl Bro established their foothold in Vietnam.
“Our knowledge and ability to create a market for our expertise,” he says.
But always having an eye out for new interesting markets is also integral, Bent points out, adding that a future potential market for Carl Bro could lie in the area of renewable sources of energy, such as Solar Heating Systems.
According to Bent Rahbek, Vietnam cannot afford to ignore its lacking energy sources and the oil prices are at the same time increasing.
“But on the other hand, Vietnam is still a developing country and does not always consider these options. This has created an increasing market for Carl Bro to make the Vietnamese market aware of the benefits of alternative energy solutions,” the branch director explains.

Starting out
Carl Bro’s first project in Vietnam was in 1992 when the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) employed the company to participate in the work of integrating returning Vietnamese refugees.
Since then the international technical consultancy company have expanded their business in Vietnam in terms of both business fields and offices.
The Carl Bro Group Representative office in Vietnam has existed in Hanoi since 1995, when two Danes were employed together with a few local staff. Today 14 years after the first entry to the Vietnamese market, Carl Bro Vietnam employs 50 permanent staff plus additional consultants.

Focusing on the private sector
From year 2001 onwards, Carl Bro turned the focus towards the private sector.
“We have had clients such as IKEA and Nike, who demanded an analysis of the working environment for sub-suppliers,” Rahbek explains adding that Danish enterprises seeking to establish production in Vietnam, such as Sonion, Orana and GJ Vietnam, are also increasingly an important part of the Carl Bro portfolio.
“They demand consultancy, Danish quality and local expertise. We can offer this. Apart from offering a Danish standard we have over 10 years of experience on the Vietnamese market”, the branch director underlines.
In year 2002 an additional office was opened in Ho Chi Minh City to strengthen the operations and activities in the South. In 2003 The Vietnamese government approved the establishment of a 100% foreign owned company, Carl Bro Vietnam Ltd, which is a daughter company of the Carl Bro Group.

Continued development
But the establishment of the subsidiary wasn’t the end of Carl Bro’s expansion. Due to a comprehensive innovation project in Denmark Carl Bro has recently established a CAD–Design Centre (Computer Aided Design) in their offices in HCMC.
The purpose of the centre is, in the first phase, to offer and deliver CAD assistance to all divisions in the Carl Bro Group worldwide and CAD assistance to external customers locally and internationally.
“Our Vietnamese staff is very skilled in the development of CAD solutions and together with the increased demand for CAD solutions Carl Bro experienced a demand to setup the CAD- Design Centre,” Bent Rahbek says.
Since its entry in 1992 Carl Bro has moved a long way from its initial task of integrating returning Vietnamese refugees, and is now working in the fields of water & environment, energy, buildings and transportation, consulting and management and Carl Bro has no doubt that the development in Vietnam will continue.
“We will experience a healthy development when Vietnam enters the WTO. It will create a stronger demand for consultancy work –also in new areas such as public planning.” says Bent Rahbek.

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