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After I moved here, I had built a small group of locals that could really help me with everything.
This is Peter. He's originally from California, has lived in New York,
but he's spent the past three years in Vietnam.
I'm meeting him in Hanoi to see what it's like to start a company in a completely foreign country.
I bet this is the one.
He started an app that matches expats and tourists to locals who can answer questions like,
"Where do I find the best local food?"
"How do I get a business license?"
Today we're using his app strictly as just users.
The first question I ask is,"What's some good street food nearby?"
An insider, as they're called, tells me about a local bun cha place
and you can't find it on Google.
You're going to put the noodles in the broth, pick some herbs, get some chilli.
And some garlic, mix it all up.
And that's it.
Peter wants tourists and new expats to experience Vietnam like a local.
This lady makes the best pork patties. These things melt in your mouth.
And no one knows about it like, no one would be able to find it?
Yeah, tourists walk by. You'll see tourists walking by from the Temple of Literature constantly.
but nobody ever stops here.
In a developing country like here, Google, guidebooks and review sites just aren't as effective, he says.
One thing this app can't help me with? My chopstick game.
Lunch costs us $3.
I open up the app again to ask about a cool local coffee shop.
So, we're now gonna go try that coffee place that was just recommended.
Peter says the recommendations all come from firsthand experience of the insiders.
Do you tell a lot of your staff like your favorite list or --
No, I've learned from them, this is a place that I found on Chameleon.
We're not busy looking things up online and reading reviews to find a good coffee shop.
We're just like, you just ask and a few minutes later, get a response and then just go.
These business owners have no special deal with you guys,
no sort of partnership, they probably don't even know what your know what your app is?
Exactly, he probably has no idea what Chameleon is.
At coffee, I ask him how he ended up in Vietnam.
I was living in Brooklyn next door to a Vietnamese restaurant.
I would eat there three times a week. I had heard amazing things about the people,
the architecture, and of course loved the food so thought, why not?
Peter says he's seen a rapid growth here in Vietnam.
The amount of people I see coming in and increasingly the amount of friends
that are even contacting me that are saying, "Hey I'm moving to Vietnam, how did you do it?"
It's incredible.
He's hoping to capitalize off of it as companies bring more and more foreigners into Vietnam.
There is so much smart talent in this place, bilingual, well-educated.
I think this is the next frontier of Asia and the world.
We make our way to one of the co-working spaces, where I meet some of the people powering the app.
The Bun Cha place ...
Yeah, I did.
Ah, that was you. That was amazing, that was excellent.
That's good.
Peter leads a meeting with his team.
I want to implement in the next few days.
We end the day at one more place. This time, it's Peter's recommendation.
Peter left Brooklyn to try something new in Vietnam.
In the process, he's building his business and experiencing a new culture as an American, abroad.
Thank you.
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How one American is capitalizing off his move to Vietnam | CNBC Profiles

2855 Folder Collection
Samuel published on October 21, 2018    Cathy ♥ translated    Evangeline reviewed
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