ecoligo has opened an office in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, marking the beginning of operations in the country. ecoligo Vietnam will be headed by Country Manager Thuong Duong, an experienced manager with a passion for sustainability.
To introduce Thuong and the Vietnamese market, the company asked him a few questions about his work, motivation and the solar landscape in Vietnam.
Hi Thuong, welcome on board! Tell us a bit about your story: what brought you to the renewables industry?
I was born and grew up in Long An city, a wonderful farm hub in the Mekong delta region. Now I live in Ho Chi Minh City with my wife and three daughters. It’s a thriving, lively city and is the perfect location for ecoligo’s South East Asia hub.
Thuong Duong, ecoligo’s Country Manager for Vietnam
Over the past 15 years of my career, I gained experience in B2B commercial & industrial sales and marketing in different business sectors such as mechanical bearing, industrial gases and oil and gas. However, the global trend of moving towards a cleaner, greener environment really caught my attention. I decided to join the global climate protection journey, starting with one of the most important factors: renewable energy.
Why do you think renewable energy, and solar in particular, has a lot of potential in Vietnam?
Vietnam is a strong, growing economy and society with increasing energy demand. The overall power consumption continues to rise rapidly, especially in commercial and industrial (C&I) sector; however, energy production can’t keep up with growth and shortages are becoming more frequent. The situation will worsen as hydropower production (currently 40% of capacity) is declining due to climate change.
The government plans to grow the current capacity of 50 GW to 130 GW in the next 10 years, namely with more coal fired power plants, LNG, utility scale wind & solar and C&I solar systems. A key strength of C&I solar is that it produces electricity where it is need, therefore taking pressure from network. It is also fast: projects can be implemented in a matter of months, while coal stations take 10 years to bring into operation. The Vietnamese government is highly supportive of rooftop solar, confirming a generous 20-year feed-in tariff earlier this year.
With government support, high solar irradiance (yield of 1,450 kwh annually) and a need for increased energy production in the coming years, the potential for solar energy in Vietnam is excellent and offers great opportunities for developers and investors alike.
Sounds like a good place to be! What’s your own motivation to work in solar in Vietnam?
Bringing cleaner, more affordable energy to the country is one of the key aspects that really draws me to this job. I also would like to contribute my efforts to the global fight against the climate crisis and I think that reducing CO2 emissions with renewable energy is a powerful and effective way to do this. On the other hand, the solar industry is only starting in Vietnam; there’s a long way to go, meaning that I have many opportunities in my personal career development.
There are already lots of opportunities in the market. Why did you decide to join ecoligo?
ecoligo addresses a central market need by offering a fully serviced and financed solar solution to businesses. The company has a great vision and strategy, aimed at helping the customer save on energy costs while lowering carbon emissions at the same time. It’s a very well-structured business and has had amazing global growth in past years. I’m really looking forward to utilising my experience to support this mission and contribute to the rapid growth of ecoligo in Vietnam.
We are, too. What are you planning in the next months?
First, we have to go through the administrative processes for the company set-up in the country. I’m also working on defining and building our business strategy for local market, together with ecoligo’s Business Development Manager, Nicolas Plenge, who is spending a few weeks with me here in Vietnam to help me get settled in. Our office is in the Deutsches Haus in District 1, close to the Saigon river.
Thuong and Nicolas in the office at Deutsches Haus, Ho Chi Minh City
We will also continue to build relationships and work closely with local EPC partners, who are vital in enabling us to develop the best solar-as-a-service solution for our customers. Last but not least, we’re looking forward to securing our first projects, which are progressing rapidly. The sooner we secure projects, the sooner local businesses can start saving money with solar. I want to make that happen as fast as I can.
Sounds great! Thanks for your insights, Thuong. We are looking forward to hearing more news from Vietnam soon.