Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dragon Capital - Trying a Queen's Gambit?

This is an interesting story – Dragon Capital, an English asset management firm that specializes in Vietnamese investments, is trying to get expatriot chess players GM Hoang Thanh Trang (HUN 2472) and GM Cao Sang (HUN 2548) to return home to Vietnam to play for that nation: (28-04-2007) Dragon Capital likes chess The Viet Nam Chess Federation (VCF) has sewn up an annual sponsorship deal with financial investment firm Dragon Capital to the tune of US$40,000, which will run from 2007-2009. The funds will be used by the VCF to organise and fund chess tournaments. The deal will allow the company to serve as the premier sponsor of the World Youth Chess Championships, to be held in southern Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province from September 8-20, 2008. Dragon Capital and VCF also called on International Grand master Hoang Thanh Trang, who now represents Hungary and finished fourth at the recently concluded European Championships, to come back to the Vietnamese national team. The company has offered the player a sponsorship deal worth $50,000-$100,000 a year. According to a subsequent news story, Dragon Capital has paid $50,000 (USD) to the VCF. The VCF then turned the money over to FIDE as part of its bid, evidently, to host the 2008 World Youth Chess Championships, and the VCF is now out of funds: Great Master doesn’t want to play for Vietnam chess yet 13:17' 22/05/2007 (GMT+7) VietNamNet Bridge – In its sponsor plan for Vietnam chess, one of the top priorities of Dragon Capital is bringing back home two great masters Hoang Thanh Trang and Cao Sang, who are playing for Hungary. The two above chess players are invested by the company of Hoang Minh Chuong, Thanh Trang’s father. The representative of Dragon Capital has met with Thanh Trang’s family members in Da Lat and Cao Sang’s family as well. However, the two families’ initial feedback is that they don’t want to play for the Vietnamese national team because the investment for sports talents in Vietnam is nearly zero now. According to Secretary General of the Vietnam Sport Federation Dang Tat Thang, if investment is less than US$50,000 a year, it is utopian to bring Thanh Trang back to the national team because Trang needs better conditions to develop her talents. However, even when the federation receives $50,000 in the first year of sponsor from Dragon Capital, the money has been transferred to the International Chess confederation (FIDE) to register as the host of the World Young Chess Tournament 2008. With this tournament, the federation is clean out of money to spend for other tasks like bonuses for national tournaments, training, and to send players to international contests. Once again investment in sport talent of Vietnam is in a vicious circle. (Source: Tuoi tre) "Once again investment in sport talent of Vietnam is in a vicious circle." One can substitute the name of many countries for "Vietnam" and it will be the same sad, frustrating story.

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