Welcome to the ViCo exclusive Friends & Family funding round. ViCo is to become Vietnam's first sustainability center, enhancing global collaboration and innovation in sustainable development across Southeast Asia. We are excited to offer you the opportunity to help fund a project that greatly contributes to the sustainability of Vietnam and the entire ASEAN region, and make you a profitable return.

Participation is now closed. We did it! We have enough to continue.

All participants will have received an email with instructions. If you have not, or have any questions, please contact jeroen@except.nl (for Netherlands) or chi@except.nl (for Vietnam).

Vico fund barometer

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Everything in a nutshell

You probably know UCo, our successful sustainability center in the Netherlands that brings together experts from around the world to work on sustainability challenges. Now, we're expanding internationally with ViCo, located in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, one of the major economic centers in Southeast Asia. Like UCo, ViCo will be a member-driven working and event space.

We spent a year building partnerships in the region and searching for the perfect location for ViCo in Ho Chi Minh City. Suddenly, we were offered an amazing opportunity: a beautiful heritage building in the heart of the city that was abandoned in the middle of a renovation.

The building, an old railway office from 1914 built in a classical French style, is ideal for ViCo and will be a center for the entire ASEAN region, demonstrating sustainable heritage like UCo does. It can house 300 experts and 30+ companies, and we've built a strong business and community model based on UCo's success.

ViCo Old Building
Ho Chi Minh City, the economic capital of Vietnam, and a business nexus in South East Asia

However, we need to act fast to secure this opportunity. We need the down payment on the lease before the end of January, which is too fast for our investors to participate. That's why we're hosting a two-week Friends & Family funding round, offering an interest rate of 11% p.a. on a 8-month short-term loan to help us fund the start.

Anyone can participate with any amount starting at $1000. This round will close on January 16, 2023. All funders will become honorary members of ViCo and will receive numerous benefits. If the lease is not secured or we don't raise enough funds, all funders will receive their funds back. Don't miss out on this chance to be a part of something transformative and join us in building a more sustainable future for Vietnam.

Read more below about the project and the funding.

Click here for the detailed funding brochure, and click here to sign up to support ViCo.

How ViCo will impact the world

As one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, Vietnam's GDP has grown at an average annual rate of 6.8% between 1990 and 2020 (World Bank), reaching approximately $260 billion. It is the place where the world's industry is moving to from China, and plays a central role in the region's growth.

However, this rapid economic growth has put pressure on the sustainability of the country's infrastructure and natural resources, as it has in other countries. The importance of balancing economic growth with environmental protection and social development is felt strongly in the region.

The Vietnamese government is committed to a green growth strategy with net-zero targets set for 2050 and is actively seeking international investment and collaboration to help achieve these goals. Where Vietnam succeeds, it will lead the way to boost sustainable development around the entire ASEAN region. So there's a challenge, and with it, an opportunity.

This is where ViCo comes in.

ViCo Sustainability Center boosts collaboration and innovation

You all know UCo, our sustainability center in Utrecht, loved by its 190+ members and operational since 2016. Now, after developing UCo, the Except team is proud to introduce the ViCo sustainability center, taking things to the next level.

ViCo will also become a member-driven shared working and community event space, but with a strong international network. It's placed strategically in the beating heart of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam's economic hub, and one of the main centers of the ASEAN economy.

Developed in the same spirit in which Except built UCo, the thriving sustainability center in the Netherlands, ViCo aims to gather experts from around the world to work on sustainability challenges such as renewable energy, circular economy, climate adaptation, industrial symbiosis, and smart cities.

ViCo will support Vietnam's sustainable development by housing up to 300 sustainability-driven global and local members, enhance knowledge sharing, collaboration, and innovation between businesses and society, and bridge the gap between the public and private sectors. And where would we realize such a place?

Except has been searching for the perfect location to house ViCo in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam's business capital. We are excited to have found the former offices of the Indochina Railway Company, a stunning heritage-listed building from 1914 built in a classical French style. It is ideal for demonstrating the sustainable renovation of heritage buildings, and as a ViCo core center.

This building has the potential to set a new benchmark for adaptive reuse and sustainable historic preservation in the region, and its structure is perfect for ViCo's collaborative center. Located in the very heart of the city, next to the iconic Ben Thanh market, it is also ideally located for the community to be visible, to bring together global audiences, and make a powerful societal-wide impact.

The development plan includes a sustainable renovation of the building, showcasing technology that can lead the way in Vietnam, and set up the training and event programs. in total, the development requires an investment of about $5 million, which is done through investment from both Vietnam and the Netherlands. This investment is returned within 5 years from revenues of the members, events, and sponsorships.

ViCo location

'Friends and Family' funding to make it happen

There is one catch - the building owners want to lease it out quickly, as a previous tenant left a half-finished remodeling job. We have worked out a deal with the owners and fine-tuned ViCo's business model, which looks great and has the support of our investors.

However, when we sign the lease, we must pay the deposit in January. Unfortunately, our investors cannot move that fast.

That's why we are offering a "Friends and Family" round for ViCo, and to allow broader participation in realizing such a unique center - in a place and at a time where we most need it.

Key details of this Friends and Family funding round

We are offering this exclusive Stage 1 Friends and Family funding round, to close on January 16th. Our goal is to raise a short-term loan of $250,000 for the duration of 8 months.

  • We are offering a healthy 11% p.a. return to thank you for your quick support.
  • After 8 months you get the total of your funding back, plus the interest. You may also choose to convert this to equity (part ownership) if you like.
  • Anyone can participate with any amount - starting from $1000.
  • Funding pays the deposit on the lease for the heritage railway building to initiate the project.
  • Anyone who signs up to participate becomes an honorary member of ViCo and is entitled to numerous benefits.
  • If the lease is not secured - or we fail to raise enough funds - all funders will receive their funds back immediately, and the loan will be dissolved.
  • If there's support for more funding, this can go into the next round, in March (up to $1.2 million).

If we do not secure this building, we will continue searching for another. However, in a year of scouting the market, it's safe to say another opportunity for such a building and location will be unlikely.

Do you, or do you know anyone who wants to make a positive social and environmental impact while making nice returns?

Download this brochure to learn more about ViCo and funding rounds.

Sign up to fund

Current funders

  • Emma Westerduin
  • Felix Tan
  • Charlotte Bosschaert
  • Leander van Splunter
  • David Bosschaert
  • Kathlyn Phuong Do
  • Ton Westerduin
  • Bert Heemskerk
  • Freek Jansen
  • Christopher Zobrist
  • Andrew Nguyen
  • Jeroen van der Vlist
  • Tom Bosschaert
  • Jill Whitney
  • Joost Starmans
  • Marieke van der Pijl
  • Dominik Meichle
  • Gilles HONG TUAN
  • Eco Vietnam Development Investment Joint Stock Company (Công ty Cổ phần Đầu tư Phát triển Eco Việt Nam)
  • Bruno Sivanandan
  • Lieke van der Sanden
  • Paula Rol
  • + 6 Anonymous funders

See further details in the brochure below or contact us for more information:

Tom Bosschaert - Tom@except.eco (CEO Except)

Chi Nguyen - Chi@except.eco (Country Director Vietnam)

Jeroen van der Vlist - Jeroen@except.eco (COO Except)

Dec. 29, 2022

Downloadable brochure

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