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Entrepreneur Ly Ngoc Minh, 50 years of sending love to the land

Update: 17-09-2020 | 14:33:39

Over 50 years of building and developing a leading ceramic brand name in Vietnam, there were periods of time when Minh Long Company was on the brink of bankruptcy. But with talent and determination of a captain, above all his lifelong love for ceramics, Ly Ngoc Minh, Chairman of Directors Board, CEO of Minh Long 1 Ceramics Company, has piloted the "ship" Minh Long 1 to reach the pinnacles of art ceramics and porcelains, gaining a foothold in the world market.

Barren land gives birth to a noble man

Ly Ngoc Minh was born in 1953 in Song Be (Binh Duong today), which is considered the cradle of southern ceramics. His love for ceramics and porcelains was inherited from his grandfather, who came from Fujian (China), who lived in Binh Duong since this land was established.

Due to difficult family circumstances, he had to drop out of school in his third grade, so all things about pottery, enamel, and color were done by himself. He said: "Perhaps I inherit diligence, patience but bravery, determination from my mother. My mother taught me to prepare for everything, to go ahead, it’s too late to lock the stable when the horse is stolen. I experienced much bitterness, had to pay heavy prices for failures. Unless I'd researched, tested, dared to experiment, it is impossible to find the blue enamel hidden in a three-dimensional space (the blue after a rain), or the royal red into ceramics".

At the age 16, Mr. Ly took over his family's pottery kilns. To escape from poverty, there was no other way to study and make more high-class colored enamel for porcelain. He, together with a friend, established a company, built a laboratory, improved their product design, found the formula to make enamel color brighter, heightened product price, even exported to other countries. That was in 1970, when he was 20 years old.

Minh Long ceramics of the Ly family overcame many difficult times, and are now one of the most prestigious and top quality ceramic brands in Vietnam and the world. After the national liberation, his business of ceramics was somewhat interrupted, Mr. Ly did many jobs to for a living. He recalled: "There were times when I thought I couldn't go back to my passion. That's when my family started growing cabbage and papaya."

After a pausing period, in 1980, his passion for ceramics and porcelain prompted him to return to his old profession. Minh Long re-started his commercial production. Perhaps ceramic craftsmen at that time had never thought about the most advanced technology in the world to be applied into ceramic products of Minh Long. That was an accomplishment of Ly Ngoc Minh, who always actively learn new things to improve ceramic equipment from all over the world.

Specifically, in 1990, Minh Long was one of the enterprises receiving the first export licenses. Exports of this company accounted for 98% output in consecutively 5 years after that. In 1994, Minh Long focused on domestic market. Later, Minh Long split into Minh Long 1 and Minh Long 2, in which Duong Van Long followed the direction of industrial porcelain, while Ly Ngoc Minh specialized in art ceramics and porcelain. High-end porcelain and ceramics of Minh Long 1 currently accounts for about 90% of the domestic market.

Man proposes, God disposes

A ceramic product, in Mr. Ly's opinion, must meet criteria of "4 nos, 4 withs": No Time, No Boundaries, No Gender, No Age; Cultural, Aesthetics, Stylish, Liveliness. To achieve these, Minh Long Company uses natural materials along with modern machinery equipment to produce the right products.

HealthyCook pots of premium porcelain product line aim at taking care of consumers' health.

Over nearly 10 years of research, Ly Ngoc Minh, who gained a title of Hero of Labor, did a seemingly impossible thing. It is premium ceramics burned at a temperature of 1,380 degrees Celsius, meeting European standards by the method of just one-time burning, which according to Mr. Dietmar Preibinger, former Director of Rosenthal (a famous German porcelain company), in the world, except Minh Long Company, no one has successfully implemented the one-time burning at a temperature of 1,380 degrees Celsius". This method helps the enamel layer to be sturdy, high glossy, dust-free, and free of toxic substances while making a difference to the products. The transition to one-time heating technology and other advanced technologies has helped Minh Long save costs and improve quality. Currently, Minh Long 1 Company has covered all market segments, with thousands of different designs. Not only used in hotels or households, Minh Long ceramics and porcelain are also used as souvenirs for guests of honor at major diplomatic events of Vietnam.

After a journey to reach the pinnacle of ceramic art, Mr. Ly now returns to his dream of young ages, that is to make the best products for Vietnamese people. After nearly 15 years of in-depth research on techniques, Minh Long 1 company launched a product line of healthy cooking porcelain pots. This product line has a temperature shock of up to 800 degrees Celsius, which is the pinnacle of porcelain cooking utensils in the world. These HealthyCook pots have all the advantages that any consumer dreams of: Reasonable price, difficult to crack during use, made from rare natural materials, benign, retaining the original taste, color, nutrients of food, and especially do not contain common toxic substances, such as lead, cadmium etc. reducing the risk of carcinogenic toxin accumulation.

Mr. Ly said: “Human health is the most valuable asset. I may not be a nutritionist myself, but making products to contribute to protecting public health and improving the life quality is something I have always been passionate about throughout my life. Because of that, HealthyCook porcelain pots and cups were born”.

His whole life sent to the earth, to ceramics and porcelain. He always ponders on building Minh Long 1 to become a beautiful image not only for his family but also for the country, and become the pride of Vietnam to introduce to international friends.

Reported by Ngoc Thanh - Translated by Ngoc Huynh

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