'Vietnam's Coffee King' loses control in company to wife

By Ngoc Tuyen   July 17, 2016 | 03:59 pm GMT+7
'Vietnam's Coffee King' loses control in company to wife
Chairman Dang Le Nguyen Vu of Trung Nguyen Corporation JSC. Photo by VnExpress

Trung Nguyen founder is on the rocks.

Binh Duong Province’s Department of Planning and Investment has withdrawn a decision made on April 21 that named Dang Le Nguyen Vu as legal representative of the Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company JSC.

Vu, a member of management board of the Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company JSC, had asked the department to approve an adjusted business registration certificate of the company, in which he would replace his estranged wife, Le Hoang Diep Thao, as the legal representative of the company.

Vu and Thao are currently in the middle of a divorce settlement.

Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company owns the popular G7 instant coffee brand and is a subsidiary of the Ho Chi Minh City-based Trung Nguyen Corporation JSC, of which Vu is the founder and chairman.

In another decision, the department restored the previous business registration certificate of the company granted in November 2013 that named Thao as the legal representative of the Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company JSC.

The department’s decisions were made based on a request dated May 13 from the People’s Supreme Court in Ho Chi Minh City, which is in the process of handling the divorce case between Vu and Thao.

In a complaint sent to Binh Duong authorities, Thao said that while waiting for the judgment from the court, Vu, a member of the management board of the Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company JSC, made his own decision to remove her as chairman and general manager of the company. Thao said it was against the law because it was not authorized by a majority decision by the management board.

According to Vietnam’s Law on Enterprises, a legal representative, company chairman or general manager is authorized to represent the company and decide on important decisions such as business operations, human resources, bank accounts and company seal.

Vu holds a 10 percent stake in Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company JSC, while Thao has 5 percent and Trung Nguyen Corporation JSC holds 85 percent, according to local media.

Trung Nguyen Corp JSC is involved in the production, processing and distribution of coffee. It is the leading coffee brand within Vietnam and exports products to more than 60 countries, including the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, Germany, China and Singapore.

Besides the Binh Duong Instant Coffee Factory, which is run by Trung Nguyen Instant Coffee Company, the group also has factories in Bac Giang Province, Ho Chi Minh City and Dak Lak Province.

Trung Nguyen operates a nationwide chain of coffee shops in Vietnam. Franchises have also been opened in other countries.

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