The year 2020 will be remembered for the turbulence caused when a pandemic swept through the world, fundamentally changing people’s way of life, presenting unprecedented challenges to governments worldwide, and forcing businesses to reflect and adapt in order to survive. With this in mind, the Asia Business Council and the Tanoto Center for Asian Family Business and Entrepreneurship Studies at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) embarked on a six-month research project to analyze how Asia Business Council member companies have responded to the pandemic in strategic, innovative, or impactful ways.

Vietnamese entertainment giant DatVietVAC Group Holdings is an example of how a company can leverage media and content as a force for good during the pandemic. It played no small part in helping the Vietnamese government promote the official BlueZone app, which helped contain the virus. By mobilizing its network of celebrities, DatVietVAC encouraged the public to download the official app, which registers health information, traces close contacts, and provides up-to-date information on the virus.

DatVietVAC also launched online streaming platform VieON and continued to develop dramas and entertainment shows which led to nothing short of a cultural phenomenon in Vietnam. This proved two things: that Vietnam is a prime market for digital media, and that digital media can be used for good. The company is now looking to transform its internal operations, while expanding its digital business with a focus on local content.