Turn sand into…. gold
“I was born in Snake zodiac (Vietnamese), At Ty, 1965. When i was a kid, my mother took me to see physiognomy, the fortuneteller said: you must continuing climb with that zodiac to survive. But at the peak of mountain, snake will be the first animal. Though that was just a banter, now i have experienced, my life is a process of “crawling” to survive. Now i can be at the “peak” or at the hillsides. However, i could see 2 or 3 realms now. And to see that “2 or 3 realms”, i have built a firm, stable foothold on this life”. It sounds a bit arrogant and i’m not an economist or strategist to know where he is, but look at what he has right now, i think he can smile with his friends for what he has achived after 20 years of “crawling”.
About 10 years ago, Lap said to me:” I’m going to build shrimp pond on the sand. I visited that place, seem attractive. What do you think about it?” He asked because he like me but that person, even “Haiyan” cannot stop his decision. I said: “I don’t know anything about that shrimp. But you said “just” nearly 20 billion in there, if anything happend, its very easy to hypotension”. After a deep smoke: “It’s ok pal. I went to the South and they already built. Absolutely safe, only profit”. I know Lap isn’t an “impulsivity” person, just have a mouth, but i’m still worried, his project isn’t my business though. Then a “Shrimp on sand Kingdom” at Mo Duc was born. The first harvest day, people crowed together to see “Lap’s shrimp” as a festival. So strange, no one could believe Lap turned that deserted sandy land into a shrimp farm. At that time, Quang Ngai province, whenever cold season came, shrimp infected and eradicated as epidemic, but Lap’s shrimp ponds still lived in peace. iIt’s not convinient for me to ask about loss, gain but i know, he is “triumph” because their shirmps all gone, only him still remained. The first person turn sand into… gold just like that, only Huynh Kim Lap. Another “Seperated sky” for this man.
Conquer the “Haunted” land
Still 10 years ago, Dung Quat refinery Project was echoed throughout the province, 1 million Quang Ngai’s people dream of “swimming” in oil. Then the joint venture between Vietnam-Russia shattered and hanged the project for years. When the last beam of hope has nearly vanished, Huynh Kim Lap quietly went to Van Tuong – the famous place for “the first victory agaisnt America” when he was just born (1965) – about 4 km from the refinery, looked for a “fortress”. People with “short mind” like me though that guy was crazy. Van Tuong those day was so creepy. People said that at 4pm you could see… ghost around there. Despite that Lap still came to this “Ghost kingdom” picked a area to built company, who can say he’s normal? Lurking for 5 years, after 2005, Dung Quat refinery Project online again. This time is certainly because Technip Group has won the bidding and the first thing on conference table of Quang Ngai managers as well as Dung Quat refinery Project Management Unit was: Where will hundreds of engineers and high level workers of Technip will stay to build the refinery? Hire a whole hotel in Quang Ngai, 30-40 km from here and set up cars to tranfer them? Hotel for few days is fine but for 3-4 years, they would run back to their country. In that “death end”, they thought about Lap, or not sure it was Lap “thinks” about them, but the plan of building Villa right at Van Tuong for professionals hire was chosen. And no one else exept Lap, was solved that puzzle for the contractor. 71 luxury villas and 170 cottages with fully amenities for high level workers grown up inside Van Tuong at the same time Technip begin to build the first structure for refinery. Now, “city still belong to district-level town”, Van Tuong crowded with red roofs, green trees. One side is the sea, and the other is… 71 villas of Lap. Not only engineers, workers and professional of Technip have an elegant-luxury accommdation, Lap also has an enourmos income from those villas too.
“If State enterprises handle this, maybe Technip will wait for ages to have an accommodation. But you are so greedy. Is that not enough? You still want to build another “Ecology urban, friendly with environment” inside of Van Tuong?” I asked just for fun.
Ông Huỳnh Kim Lập (giữa), nhận bằng khen của Bộ GT-VT ngày khánh thành tuyến đường tránh Đức Phổ. Ảnh: HÀ MINH
That it, when people hear i applied for permission of this urban to Quang Ngai authorities, they said i’m a maniac. But they don’t know that there will be about 30.000 workers, engineers around Dung Quat refinery cluster. Just construct about 1.000 “nearly” luxury house and instalment in 25 years, i believe this project will success.” To be honest, look at those immense deserted mount at Van Tuong, i don’t have enough romantic to image 1.000 “luxury” house with red tiles and green trees, cheeper all days will grown like that 71 villas hired by Technip Group. Look at my expression, Lap assertion:”I don’t do anything lack of reliability”. I will wait for a “seperated sky” crowd with red tiles nearby the sea of Van Tuong in a not too distant future.
After this villas project, Ha Nang hydropower plant with more than 300 billion VND was put into operation and connect to National grid. And then the Duc Pho’s bypass of National Road 1A with 580 billion VND for nearly 10km just inaugurated and operation a few days ago… That isn’t the end of successful, Huynh Kim Lap is cultivated a very daring idea: Construct the center administrative of Quang Ngai and encroached river by embankments, shift Ba To park to the riverside to establish the most magnificent commercial-services district of Quang Ngai. “This is my favorite idea. I applied this to People’s Committee, the result is still a question mark” – Lap shared.
Manager of an orphanage dream
If a businessman is a person who earn a lot of money by his ability, then i’m a successful businessman. But i’m luckier than my friends. Money is not my ambition anymore, now it is work, contribute constructions, ideas for life, that is my happiness now. But the most pleasure i’m waiting for is build and be a manager of an orphanage.
Go first, think first, high reliability, don’t dependent on relationships… That the labels of Lap. Born in an old town Thu Xa, a harbor used to be very famous with Minh Huong people from 17-18th century, Huynh Kim Lap is the 4th in a 8 siblings family. His father, chose raising duck as a job “to easy in communication with the revolutionary in the war against America” – as his explanation. Lap was handing down this occupation. At grade 6, there was time when he could handle 2/3 his father job with thousand of ducks. Fields and ducks but that boy still cultivated an ambition: I will become rich not by raising ducks. Graduated from Economic University of Ho Chi Minh city, Lap wandered in Sai Gon to look for a chance. At the end of 90s, there were a lot of opportunities for who has ambition, but Lap doesn’t want to achieve his dream by all costs like some of his colleagues. Smuggle and unofficial business, rich after a night but that doesn’t fit his personality. Lap came to his hometown with Certificate of Economic University just to… raising chicken. The name “Lap chicken” followed him from that day. A big chicken farm inside of Quang Ngai town suprised everyone. Those years, pig’s epidemic speard and cause immeasurable damaged for farmers and the price for suckling pig dropped dramatically, people threw them on streets. Lap searched for them and bought all, waiting for occasion. In less than 1 year later, pig price increase rapidly. But then, Lap sold all of animals despite his wife tear. Once again head to the South. Can’t rich with those pigs and chickens. That why Lap went and searched for opportunities again.
If a businessman is a person who earn a lot of money by his abilities, then i’m a successful businessman. But i’m lucky than my friends. Money is not my ambition anymore, now it is work, contribute constructions, ideas for life, that is my happiness now. But the most pleasure i’m waiting for is build and be a manager of an orphanage.
Mr.Huynh Kim Lap – Chairman of Board Thien Tan Group”
With Lap’s achievement after 15 years in business, his decision when left the farm was absolutely right. Go ahead and then suddenly stop, breaking at a totally strange road, Lap not different from racing athletes in Africa’s deserts. But whether went around, go straight ahead or suddeny turned, Lap never forget his destination. Beside, Lap is going to build an orphanage. And that defenitely not the last intendeds of a successful like Lap, but that humanities projects is not what many rich people think about.
Earn money by our own hands is the valuable things but use that money in the meaningful things is much more precious. That could be seen as Lap’s “seperated sky” as well.