South Asia
Last update

Glink, started in 2009 as a community-based organization under the Health Policy Innovation project funded by USAID. In 2010, the NGO was then officially registered as a limited liability entity. In 2017, the project transformed into a social enterprise as it opened the first private consulting room to provide HIV examination and treatment services officially licensed by HCMC’s Department of Health. Glink currently runs a total of 5 consulting rooms in the Northern, Central and Southern regions of Viet Nam. The company provides diverse services for HIV patients and related-HIV services, including HIV treatment with anti-retroviral therapy (ARV), post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) for those potentially exposed to HIV to prevent becoming infected, and pre-exposure prophylaxis for those highly at risk to prevent HIV infection, screening tests for sexually transmitted infections, and prevention of opportunistic infections, as well home-based services. 

Inclusive Business Model

The current business model of the company, although addressing an important social need, does not target the B40 income groups. The target clients are people from the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) group (mostly gays), who can pay for HIV treatment. The LGBT community, while being able to pay for the service, are subject to social stigma, discrimination, and violence. LGBTs affected by HIV face even worse discrimination. Currently, the company is a mainstream business. However, the company could transform into an IB if the management has a strategic intent and identifies a good business case to target (also) the poorer income groups as clients.


Glink has provided HIV treatment for 500 LGBT persons in HCMC so far. As a CSR activity, Glink cooperated with some donor-funded projects to provide free testing for accumulated 7,000 persons. The company also occasionally provides students with emergency PEP. Overall the number of clients is still small (100), although the number beneficiaries is much higher (100 treatments plus 1000 consultations and free HIV testing in 2018). 

Glink could potentially transform into an IB by setting up an additional business line for the B40. This is especially because Glink seeks to grow further; escape the social enterprise trap of low reach, revenue and growth; and achieve a stronger industry/sector transformation impact.