April 08, 2020 00:56

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Businesses during Covid-19 epidemic: "Necessity is the mother of invention"

09:16 | 21/02/2020

VCN –Increasing number of orders for mask production, promotion of brand image through charity activities and production and market shifting are solutions that many businesses are taking to stay stable during the Covid-19 epidemic and possibly develop and make a profit.

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Many businesses are seeking ways to change the market and shift production to cope with the Covid-19 epidemic. Photo: ST

Business shifting

Speaking about production shifting to compensate for losses, Mr. Nguyen Ton Quyen, member of the Vietnam Association of Wood and Forest Products, said the virus in China has sharply reduced woodchip exports. However, woodchip exports do not bring high value, do not sustainably develop forest sources, so the reduction in exports will help replenish domestic wood materials for artificial board production, creating higher added value. Mr. Quyen also said that a number of enterprises specializing in producing export woodchips have invested in equipment for producing plywood, in the hope of not only escaping difficulties but creatingstronger growththanks to this high value item.

In fact, many businesses have been active in production and export shifting, even changing production and business plans to cope with the epidemic. The representative of Lavifood Joint Stock Company said that, with the falling price of dragon fruits due to its failure to export to China, Lavifood has been expanding the purchase and processing of dragon fruits into diverse and quality products such as juice, dried and frozen fruits, especially 100% natural fresh dragon fruit about to be launched. If operating at full capacity, the company's factories can process more than 500 tons of raw material per day, which not only helps improve the outcome for farmers but also forms a long-term business strategy for people and businesses. But to do this, Lavifood had to change its business plan for 2020, so it is necessary to have supporting policies for processing factories.

Along with that, the tourism industry,which is heavily affected by the epidemic,has also offered many solutions. Recently, Saigontourist group said that from the beginning of March, the group will deploy the first stimulus program in 2020 in the whole system. Accordingly, all Saigontourist Group units will apply flexible pricing policies, forms of promotion, after-sales services, and added values ​​to attract customers. This will be one of the largest stimulus campaigns of the group so far. The program enables customers to access service packages and discount combos from accommodation, food to inbound or outbound tours with discounts of as much as over 50%.

In addition to tourism businesses, airlines have also sought to redirect the market. On February 13, Vietjet Air announced the opening of five non-stop flights connecting Vietnam's largest cities of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh city and Da Nang with New Delhi and Mumbai in India.

At present, to remove difficulties for tourism businesses affected by the Covid-19 epidemic, the state agency has considered a visa exemption scheme for some markets such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, India and Russia. This is expected to help increase the number of tourists, replacing the large number of Chinese tourists who are restricted from travel.

For long term benefits

Also, during this period, the mass media as well as social networks have repeatedly posted information and images of people queuing up to buy masks or queuing to receive free masks. It is worth noting that the units selling or distributing masks are all private enterprises with the purpose of serving the community.

Speaking on this issue, Mr. Phan Van Hieu, Chairman of the Board of Directors of CVI Cosmetic Pharmaceutical Joint Stock Company, said that after the company’s factory, which meets the GMP standard, was licensed by the Ministry of Health and came into operation at Lang Hoa Lac Hi-Tech Park, the company has decided to mobilize all human resources and put aside all other production plans to focus on producing antibacterial hand cleaning gel. In the immediate future, the company will offer this product free through different channels, then consider bringing products to consumers with a commitment to price stability.

Similarly, a number of textile companies have shifted to making antibacterial nonwoven products to serve the needs of mask production by garment businesses. Many businesses also said that this is a new product that they have never done, so it not only needs human resources,but also must have standard technical machines. However, this shifting is totally appropriate, because there are a huge number of customers asking to buy masks.

It can be seen that these are socially responsible actions of businesses. However, from an economic and commercial perspective, this is also a very smart business strategy. They choose to spend a small profit in the immediate future to ensure benefits in the long run.

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Accordingly, these actions will create a spillover effect, helping consumers remember the brand name for future purchases. Meanwhile, shops and businesses that sell masks at "exorbitant" prices for profit, hoard goods and creating fake scarcity, have been sanctioned by the authorities as well as received grievances from consumers. Therefore, the charitable activities of many businessesare small but significant and have practical meaning not only for society but also for the development of businesses in the future.

By Minh Chi/ Huyen Trang