When Gun-Ho's party entered the room, those two men quickly stood up to greet them.
Seukang Li introduced one of the men to Gun-Ho, "This is President Baogang Chen of Huanle Shiji Production Company."
Gun-Ho extended his hand to Baogang Chen for a handshake.
"I'm Gun-Ho Goo from Korea."
Baogang Chen introduced the man who he came with, "This is Yan Wu. He is our director."
Yan Wu gave his business card to Gun-Ho, Seukang Li, and Director Woon-Hak Sim. Gun-Ho thought that it must be the first time for Seukang Li as well to meet this Yan Wu person since he also gave his business card to Seukang Li.
Gun-Ho introduced Director Woon-Hak Sim to those two men.
"This is Director Woon-Hak Sim. He is a famous Korean soap opera production director. He wanted to meet with people in China, who are in the entertainment industry, so I brought him with me."
Seukang Li introduced Gun-Ho to President Chen and Director Wu again with more details.
"President Goo has several companies in Korea. He is the chairman of GH companies. I personally asked him to have some interest in the drama production field in Shanghai since the industry is hot these days. Thankfully, he made time to visit me today. If you have anything that you'd like to talk to him about, this is your chance to do so."
Gun-Ho asked in his fluent Chinese, "Mr. President Chen and Mr. Director Li, have you known each other for a long time?"
Baogang Chen responded, "Yes. We've been friends from childhood. I'm close to Jien Wang as well."
"Oh, I see. I was actually beginning to wonder if Director Li was a major shareholder of Huanle Shiji."
"Well, I can't outrightly deny that he is a shareholder, but I can't admit that he is one of my company's shareholders either."
"What do you mean?"
At that moment, the food started coming out. There were raw fish dishes and deep-fried seafood as well. After tasting some food a little bit, Seukang Li elaborated what President Chen said, "Since you are Korean, I will just tell you honestly, hoping this doesn't become an issue here. My father actually owns his company's shares of 30%. He gladly invested in his company since he is my childhood friend. Now, he is at risk of losing his money that he has saved up in his entire life."
Gun-Ho thought of Minister Jin-Woo Lee instantly.
'I guess Seukang Li tried the same tactic that Minister Jin-Woo Lee is doing right now with my company. He was probably making slush funds for his political activities by investing in his friend's company using his father's name. Even though China has extremely strict censorship on the contents of soap operas, it shouldn't have mattered for them because Seukang Li is the director of the relevant government bureau, and he will watch his back. I guess his friend is not talented in producing soap operas. He still failed even with the help of the director of the bureau of cultural affairs, radio broadcasting, film, television, media, and arts. Maybe he produced a soap opera that presented a lopsided view of certain things like by overly emphasizing nationalism or something.'
Gun-Ho just nodded his head without making any comments.
Gun-Ho picked up his chopsticks and tried to have a piece of raw fish when Baogang Chen asked him, "By the way, Mr. President Goo, you speak Chinese fluently. Where did you learn your Chinese?"
"I actually went to college here in China Zhejiang University."
"Oh, I see. That makes sense then. Well, try this deep-fried shrimp. It's very tasty."
President Chen pulled the plate and placed it in front of Gun-Ho.
"How many dramas have you completed so far?"
"We produced two. One is currently on air, but both of them had low ratings."
"I guess that incurred some loss on your part."
"Right. I used to work for a broadcasting station, and I think I should have been more careful when I decided to start my own business. I guess I was recklessly enthusiastic."
"Director Woon-Hak Sim, who is sitting next to me, also used to work in a broadcasting station."
"But Director Sim hasn't failed his business, has he? Are you currently producing a soap opera, Mr. Director Sim?"
Gun-Ho interpreted what President Chen just said for Director Sim, and Director Sim smiled bitterly when he understood his question.
'I wish I didn't. Look, I'm broke completely. I now have to live with a bad credit score.'
Gun-Ho said while eating, "Since you failed two dramas in a row, I guess that no one would be willing to invest in your production business. I suppose that you don't have enough funds left to produce another drama either."
"Well, that's why I asked a famous drama writer to give me his manuscript so I could produce a drama based on it. I've known this writer since I had worked at a broadcasting station as a PD. I told him about my situation and asked for help, and he gave me his manuscript without hesitation."
"Hmm, really? Is it a modern drama?"
"Yes, it is."
"Were those two soap operas that you produced so far were modern dramas as well?"
"The first one was a war drama against Japan."
"China's war drama against Japan is usually stale. There must be many battle scenes where one Chinese soldier from the People's Liberation Army successfully fought against ten Japanese soldiers. Many young viewers are probably fed up with those scenes by now."
When Gun-Ho gave his opinion about China's anti-Japan war dramas, Seukang Li, President Chen, and Director Wu laughed out loud. Director Sim, who didn't understand Chinese, was the only one without laughter. He was just sitting at the table blinking.
Someone ordered beers, and a restaurant staff lady came into the room and filled up each person's empty glass with beer.
After gulping his beer, Gun-Ho asked, "How do you plan to receive investment funds if you have an investor who is willing to make an investment in your business?"
"The company is already established, so a form of joint venture wouldn't be feasible. So, I was thinking of transferring the company's shares to the investor in exchange for his investment funds."
"Does your company have assets?"
"I'm sorry, but there is no asset. We have fifteen great workers and our expertise and know-hows. That's all we have."
Seukang Li chipped in.
"The investments that you have made in China so far are all relatively safe bets. The Jinxi Industrial Park in Kunshan City, that we did together and Antang City's terminal business that you are doing right now were safe investments because the Chinese partner brought real estate as their investment-in-kind. So, you could make your investment with an easy mind. However, this drama production business is different. It is a highly risky business, but it could be extremely lucrative if it succeeds. There is no guarantee that this business would succeed though."
"I understand that."
"I like Korean soap operas and dramas. They make them so interesting and fun to watch. Their editing techniques are amazing. I strongly believe that if we combine Gun-Ho Goo's funds, and Korea's advanced techniques and expertise in producing a drama, with China's manpower in producing a soap opera or a TV drama series, their third try will definitely succeed."
"If you are interested in getting into this interesting industry, please seriously think about it. As Professor Jien Wang said, Jinxi Industrial Park and Antang City's terminal project is a Cash Cow business. When you were thinking of investing in those two businesses, I told you that you wouldn't lose money, but you would absolutely make profits even though you might not hit a jackpot. But this time, I can't guarantee anything even if you decide to make your investment in this industry. No one would be able to guarantee a success in the drama production industry, and that's the reality."
"Hmm, I understand what you mean, Director Li. Can I ask how much capital was infused when Huanle Shiji Production Company was established?"