Obama Dreamplex Visit: A Boost for Vietnamese Entrepreneurship


In 2016, former U.S. President Barack Obama embarked on a historic three-day visit to Vietnam, reinforcing the strong ties between the two nations. 

As part of his visit, Dreamplex Nguyen Trung Ngan is deeply honored that former President Obama stopped at Dreamplex, a thriving coworking hub for young entrepreneurs in downtown Ho Chi Minh City. The Obama Dreamplex visit stands as a pivotal milestone in both our history and Vietnam’s entrepreneurial journey.

With its open workspace concept, Dreamplex provided a dynamic environment for startups and young businesses to thrive when the startup scene in Vietnam was still in its earliest stages. 

During his visit to Dreamplex, former President Obama engaged with several entrepreneurs, gaining insight into groundbreaking projects like a virtual game aiding nerve injury recovery and a smartphone doubling as a laser cutter.

Promoting Trade and Economic Reform

Former President Obama used this opportunity to advocate for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a 12-nation trade deal aimed at boosting Vietnam’s economic reforms and enhancing its global competitiveness. 

While the agreement faced opposition in Congress and among former U.S. presidential candidates, Obama emphasized that it could open new markets, improve labor and environmental standards, and foster economic growth. 

He believed that TPP could be a game-changer for Vietnam, catalyzing substantial progress.

Obama's Visit to Dreamplex

A Dream Realized: Nguyen Trung Tin and Dreamplex

At the heart of Dreamplex’s success story is Nguyen Trung Tin, the visionary behind this innovative coworking and office-for-rent model. 

Born in 1987, Tin’s journey from aspiring entrepreneur to hosting a conversation with the former U.S. President is inspirational. 

Tin’s admiration for Obama, stemming from the former President’s profound talks and transformative leadership, made this encounter all the more meaningful. In a conversation with Dan Tri Magazine, Tin shared that Dreamplex getting on former President Obama’s radar wasn’t accidental. 

In the months before the visit, the company organized over 70 events, fostering dialogue between young Vietnamese businesses and the U.S. Embassy. These interactions gave the U.S. side valuable insights into the aspirations and challenges faced by Vietnam’s youth.  The U.S. Embassy subsequently extended its support, recognizing the potential of the startup ecosystem in Vietnam.

Meeting former President Obama during the Obama Dreamplex visit at Nguyen Trung Ngan was a dream come true for Nguyen Trung Tin. He held deep respect for Obama’s perseverance and his ability to bring about positive change, even in challenging times.

Tin’s Key Questions for former President Obama

As a young entrepreneur seeking to transform Vietnam into a startup nation, Tin had specific questions for former President Obama. 

He was keen to understand how Obama envisioned combining state-owned enterprises and private businesses to support young people, including those with an entrepreneurial mindset. Additionally, he sought insights into the strategies and starting points for such a transformative journey.

Former President Obama’s famous quote, “Change is really difficult. If you want to change, do it. If you can’t do it, find a way to do it. Every day you have to try harder,” resonated deeply with Nguyen Trung Tin. 

This philosophy, applicable in politics and business, underscores the importance of perseverance and continuous improvement, especially for startups.

Obama’s Message to Dreamplex, Entrepreneurs, and Vietnam

During his visit, the former U.S. President addressed a captivated audience at Dreamplex Co-Working Space, located in the vibrant District 1 of the city.

 As reported by Vietnam News, Obama explored innovative products crafted by young Vietnamese entrepreneurs, including virtual games designed to aid individuals with nerve injuries, a smartphone-controlled laser cutter, and various groundbreaking innovations.

Former President Obama emphasized the global significance of entrepreneurship during his speech at Dreamplex. He stated, “Next month at our global entrepreneurs’ summit, something that I have been hosting for several years, I will welcome eight Vietnamese entrepreneurs to Silicon Valley so they can learn from some of the best entrepreneurs and venture capitalists in the world.”

He also praised Dreamplex as a place for digital entrepreneurs, idea-sharing, and community building. The former President stressed that incubators like Dreamplex play a pivotal role in fostering entrepreneurship in Vietnam and nurturing a culture of innovation.

Reflecting on the importance of entrepreneurship, Obama noted, “Ultimately, what makes start-ups and entrepreneurs successful is good ideas and human capital. Obviously, investors are important and infrastructure is important. But the most important thing is people. The culture of entrepreneurship has really begun to grow in Vietnam.”

He also highlighted the global attention garnered by Vietnam’s entrepreneurial spirit, noting that venture capital firm 500 Startups had recently launched a $100 million fund in Ho Chi Minh City.

Obama praised the vibrant spirit of entrepreneurship in Vietnam and commended Khoa Phạm, director of legal & corporate affairs for Microsoft, for returning to Vietnam to provide opportunities similar to those he received in the United States. He stressed the importance of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement in setting high standards for trade and commerce, including intellectual property protection.

In closing, former President Obama encouraged Vietnam’s dynamic entrepreneurial community, expressing his belief in their potential to shape the nation’s future. He concluded, “I think that if you had any doubt about the outstanding future of Vietnamese entrepreneurs, then all those doubts have been pushed away because of the outstanding presentations by these three individuals.”

Vietnamese Entrepreneurship

In Conclusion

Former President Obama’s visit to Dreamplex symbolized the potential of innovation, entrepreneurship, and international collaboration in Vietnam. It highlights the critical role of shared workspaces like Dreamplex in fostering creativity and economic growth. 

Dreamplex hasn’t stopped innovating since those days in 2016. Today, Dreamplex has led an evolution in Vietnam’s offices from a functional workplace to an employee-centric experience to pursue passions, connect with people, and grow and develop yourself.

New locations like Dreamplex Ngo Quang Huy and the upcoming Dreamplex Le Hien Mai were designed to emphasize true sustainability and well-being, not as a marketing gimmick but as a true effort to improve young Vietnamese’s daily experiences and lives. 

These efforts have, once again, resulted in global recognition, including the nomination for the highly prestigious Archdaily Global Building of the Year Award – the Oscars for architectural design – and coverage in some of the leading global design magazines. 

Read more: “Dreamplex Ngo Quang Huy: Pioneering the Future of Work with Wellbeing and Sustainable Design.

About Dreamplex

Dreamplex creates “A Better Day at Work” by perfectly meeting the needs of rapidly growing companies that understand their young employees expect more from their workplace.

With professional, flexible workspaces, top-notch hospitality services, and a collaborative community for mutual growth, Dreamplex helps businesses work productively while optimizing operational costs.

Join the community with tech experts and startup founders from TIKI, Zuhlke Vietnam, GFT Group, Vietcetera, at Dreamplex’s flexible office spaces in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.


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