The Legion of Honour, established by Napoleon Bonaparte, is the most prestigious, long-standing and highest order of merit awarded by the French government to individuals and organizations with special contributions. At the ceremony, the French Republic Ambassador to Vietnam Nicolas Warnery presented the Legion of Honour to Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao - the first self-made female billionaire in Southeast Asia, and also the first Vietnamese businesswoman who receive this noble honor.
As the Chairwoman of Sovico Group, President and CEO of Vietjet, Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao has made special contributions to promoting economic, cultural, development cooperation, making strong highlights in the strategic partnership, economic cooperation between Vietnam and Europe, between Vietnam and the French Republic.
At the ceremony, Ambassador Nicolas Warnery honored the contributions of Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, highly appreciated her vision, wisdom and compassion, business philosophy for the development of the community, the future generation. He extended his gratitude to the businesses led by Madame Thao such as Sovico, Vietjet, HDBank, etc. for always accompanying and cooperating with French businesses and the French people, especially during the period affected by Covid-19. Achievements of the businesses led by female billionaire Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao in the fields of finance, aviation, real estate, and international trade are admired by international friends and contribute to the economic development in Vietnam as well as in the world.
On the Vietnamese side, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs To Anh Dung attended the ceremony and delivered a speech: “Congratulations to Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao for the noble award that the French government has presented today. The event today will be a highlight in the diplomatic, cultural and economic relationship of the two countries. In front of the international friends, Vietnam is proud of the good values of a strongly developed Vietnam that business community in which Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao is a typical female representative have joined hands to build".
Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao extended her thanks to the French government and people, French President Emmanuel Macron, the former French Ambassadors to Vietnam as well as Ambassador Nicolas Warnery. At the same time, the businesswoman also thanked everyone who has been supporting and cooperating closely with her personally as well as businesses such as Sovico, Vietjet, HDBank, etc. in the past time, achieving great business results.
The Legion of Honour is the most recent award that female billionaire Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao has received. She is one of the few Vietnamese businesswomen who have received many domestic and international awards such as Asia's Most Influential People for her philanthropy awarded by Tatler magazine, one of 100 Asian economic transformers voted by Business Insider Australia magazine, top 100 most powerful women in the world, most powerful female leaders in Asia, the Best Businesswoman Award in ASEAN, Asia-Pacific CEO of The Year 2019 voted by the world business community, etc. She was also included in a case study for teaching and research at Harvard University - USA.
Sovico Group led by her has pioneered to become an official partner of the United Nations, together with member organizations such as UNESCO, UN-Habitat, UNIDO Vietnam and international, etc. UN Resident Coordinator Kamal Malhotra once shared: “With this partnership, Sovico Group demonstrates its commitment to sustainable development in Vietnam as well as to the principles and values of the United Nations. We welcome them to become the pioneer group of Vietnam, and also to become a partner of the United Nations. We hope Sovico will be an inspiring example for other corporations and businesses in Vietnam to take practical actions to realize a sustainable future for Vietnam together”.
The Chief Representative of UNESCO in Vietnam Michael Croft expressed his admiration to the President and CEO of Vietjet: “With the decision of achieving a strategic partnership between Sovico Group and the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization - UNESCO, Madame Thao has clearly shown a preeminent vision beyond ordinary business thinking. She understands that the honest business philosophy and corporate responsibility are the foundation to go beyond financial strength. This is probably due to her in-depth understanding of the role of businesses in a large society and her kind heart alongside her overwhelming vision”.