Nguyen Canh Binh – CEO of Alpha Books

Nguyen Canh Binh is Chairman & CEO of Alpha Books - a famous joint-stock company which has its strength in publishing books  about business administration in Vietnam. He is also a famed translator and speaker about books concerning the world’s leading business brains.

Nguyen Canh Binh was born in 1972. Although he was a student good at physics and graduated from the Petro-chemistry Faculty at the University of Science and Technology, he has a great passion for translation which triggered giving up his lucrative jobs in Petrolimex and then FPT Company to establish Alpha Books Joint-stock Company which specialises in publishing copyrighted books about business administration, education and thinking skills. He has learned by himself for years and found his own way – translating books focusing on successful stories in business of the world’s famous CEOs and handbooks of business and start up in business.

Nguyen Canh Binh developed his company by starting to buy copyrights of books from the US by the publishers AMacom and the McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc and establishing long-term cooperation with the largest publishing group of the UK, Pearson Education. He made tireless efforts and participated in numerous book fairs in the US, the UK, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore to look for opportunities to buy the copyrights of rare and valuable books for translation to introduce to Vietnamese readers.

Alpha Books CEO Nguyen Canh Binh. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

CEO Nguyen Canh Binh shares his experiences with employees of Alpha Books. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

Alpha Books pays much attention to projects on books of students. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

One of the top priorities of its publishing strategy is job orientation for young people. Photo: File

CEO Nguyen Canh Binh signs on books for students. Photo: File

CEO Nguyen Canh Binh always receives respect and love from his friends and acquaintances. Photo: File

CEO Nguyen Canh Binh at the signing ceremony of a strategic cooperation agreement framework
between Alpha Books and the Kyowon Publisher of RoK. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

Alpha Books coordinates with Samsung Vietnam to organise a talk “Thank you, Vietnam!” Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

The trips to foreign countries have not only helped him look for cooperation opportunities, but also to accumulate new information and to find the copyrights of valuable books from many countries. Typically, after attending the medium-small-business’s workshop on intellectual property protection held by APEC in Bangkok in 2003, his company published a set of seven books on security which are listed as one of top books on security in Vietnam.

Alpha Books also produced the publication of the Vietnamese version of the book set, “New Business Thoughts from Harvard”, which consists of six books with the copyright from Harvard Business School Press or the book set “Outstanding Intellectuals, Business Genius”, consisting of four best books about “four great business leaders” Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Richard Branson which are considered handbooks for a start-up in business of young people.

To expand the book line of thinking skills on education, Nguyen Canh Binh created the Alpha Kids model, a bookstore of educational thinking skills for kids with the intention of introducing to Vietnam new educational trends, methods and thinking. These books provide kids with thinking skills about fine arts, natural sciences and the environment through pictures, which are used widely in pre and primary schools as reference books. Alpha Books obtained great success when setting up a map for the learning development of youth with the “Handbook for Skill Development of Young People”.

Whenever a new book is published, he often invites the author of the book to Vietnam to talk with Vietnamese readers. For instance, he invited Oscar Brenifier, the author of the book set “Thinking with Kids”, and Paul Spiegman, the author of “Why We Are All Satisfied”, to Vietnam and organised a “Workshop on How to Teach Children Think” which attracted many young mothers. This provided a chance to promote cultural exchange and enrich the knowledge of Vietnamese readers.

Some of the books published by Alpha Books:

The book entitled “Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan” published by Alpha Books
receives an award from the National Book Critics Circle. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

The book entitled “How the US Constitution Was Established” translated by CEO Nguyen Canh Binh.
Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

The book entitled “Outliers – The Story of Success” published by Alpha Books. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

The book entitled “A People’s History of the United States” published by Alpha Books. Photo: Thong Hai/VNP

At present, Alpha Books has a staff of 100 employees and many book agents nationwide. The company’s CEO shared: “Business in book publishing brings many challenges but it attracts and lures me. To publish a book, which is appreciated by readers, it requires the joint efforts of all employees, from the translators to the designers and distributors. The books are our spiritual children”.

Story: Bich Van – Photos: Thong Hai & Files