The story of the fish sauce company inviting its shareholders to claim their capital after 70 years

The fish sauce company has invited its shareholders to claim their capital after 70 years

In 1976, Mr. Duong Trung Quoc’s family received a letter from Lien Thanh Fish Sauce Company…


6 founders of Lien Thanh: Ho Ta Bang, Nguyen Trong Loi, Nguyen Quy Anh (top row),
Nguyen Hiet Chi, Tran Le Chat, Ngo Van Nhuong (bottom row).


A group of friends were having lunch, and the writer overheard historian Duong Trung Quoc telling the story of Lien Thanh Fish Sauce Company.

In 1976, the family received a letter from the Lien Thanh Fish Sauce Company. The letter invited them to Saigon to receive their… capital, which included dividends and shares of capital that they had contributed to the company. The reason for the invitation was that the company had to dissolve due to the transfer of capital ownership to the state.


Founded in June 1906, this is an enterprise founded by patriotic scholars in Binh Thuan, in response to the Duy Tan movement. Lien Thanh once helped Nguyen Tat Thanh – Chairman Ho Chi Minh – during the process of moving from Phan Thiet to Saigon and boarding the ship abroad.


Mr. Duong Trung Quoc has stated that this fish sauce company was operational from the time of its founding until 1944. However, due to the Japanese coup against the French in Indochina, the company lost contact with some of its shareholders. Later, France recaptured the South, and the resistance war against the French divided the North and South, further complicating matters.


Until 1976, when peace was restored throughout the territory and the country was unified, the company sent letters to Hanoi at the old address of the capital contributor (the grandfather of historian Duong Trung Quoc) to invite shareholders who had shared capital nearly 50 – 60 years ago to receive assets when the business ended.


Mr. Duong Trung Quoc said that his family sent him to Lien Thanh Fish Sauce Company to inherit assets, at the company’s invitation.


He got on a train headed to the South with 25 shares of stock, each with a face value of 25 Indochina dong. However, upon arrival, he was informed by the company representative that he was too late as the shareholders’ meeting had taken place a few days prior and Mr. Quoc had missed it.


However, Mr. Quoc said, the company’s people still kindly invited Mr. Quoc to sit down and open the books, calculate, and return capital contributions to shareholders.


The amount of money Mr. Quoc’s family received back, according to him, was just enough to buy a black-and-white television at that time and tulle curtains.


The cash was not significant, but Mr. Quoc’s family, and possibly all other shareholders of Lien Thanh, were very touched and appreciated the trustworthiness of Lien Thanh’s leaders.


During the national reform movement in the early 20th century, many Vietnamese businessmen named their companies using the word “tin” (trustworthy), such as Van Tin, Duc Tin, and Trung Tin. They fulfilled this promise to their customers.


With trustworthiness in their minds, many Vietnamese merchants became ethnic capitalists with products and services on par with overseas Chinese, overseas Indian, and French merchants due to their patriotism and national spirit.


According to Châu Anh/VnEconomy