When they were almost done with dinner, Gun-Ho asked Jae-Sik Moon, "How is it going with the new business that you want to open here?"
"We are still searching for a place for it. The places that we liked were asking a high rent, and the places that offered a reasonable rental price were not so great."
"With 100 million won, you can get a place here that you want, can't you?"
"Not necessarily. There is a food alley where a lot of young people often come to eat. We saw a shop there on the main road, which is on the market for sale, and they are asking for more than 300 million won. It is expensive, but I'msure that whatever we sell in that store, we will make money because of the high traffic in the area. A McDonald or KFC will do as well."
"Hmm, really? But, for a deep-fried chicken restaurant that serves beer along with it, you don't need a shop on the main road, do you?"
"Where are you going to get the ingredients? Are you going to bring chickens from Korea?"
"No, we can buy raw chickens here. We will import spices from Korea though."
"I see. When you go to see a shop for your business, you probably want to bring a Chinese person, maybe someone from the company. You could easily get ripped off if you are not accompanied by a Chinese person."
"Yeah, I know. I'm thinking of taking the office manager lady or a staff member from our accounting team when it is time to make a contract for the store."
"That's good. Oh, you know what? I think I'd better go back to the hotel now. I didn't know I stayed here for too long."
Gun-Ho climbed to his feet and said to Jae-Sik's wife, "Thank you for dinner. I feel comfortable now after having Korean food. The dishes were so neat and delicious. Thank you very much."
Gun-Ho didn't forget to say good-bye to the baby.
"Bye-bye, Soon-Young. I will see you again."
Gun-Ho then pulled out an envelope from the inner pocket of his jacket and slipped it into the baby's small hand. The baby held it tightly.
"Haha. I think your baby knows what's inside this envelope."
"You sent us money when she was born, and you are giving us money again today?"
"I had to stop by Shanghai City before coming here, so I couldn't prepare a proper gift for the baby. It's not much. Please accept it. Thank you for everything today."
"I hope you enjoyed the meal. Haha."
"I will just say bye here. Please stay with the baby. You don't have to come outside to see me off."
When Gun-Ho arrived at the hotel, it was already after 10 pm.
The following day, Gun-Ho headed to a hotel close to the terminal where the board meeting would be held. The hotel was small, and Gun-Ho was shown to a conference room. When Gun-Ho arrived at the conference room, Eun-Hwa Jo was standing there talking with a staff from the accounting team. When she saw Gun-Ho, she looked delighted.
"Oh, my, Mr. President Goo! It's really good to see you again. It has been a long while."
"How have you been? You seem to look prettier every time I see you."
"You seem to gain some weight, sir."
"How do you like working here?"
"It's good. Weon Zong (President Moon) is very kind to me. His wife is nice as well. I like it here."
"Oh, is that so?"
"His wife brought me kimchi that she made the other day."
"Oh, I see."
The Chinese partners arrived. The transportation company's President Runsheng Yan and the vice presidentChen Zongentered the conference room. After greeting each other delightfully, the board meeting began.
The joint venture's chairman at the moment was the transportation company's President Runsheng Yan, and the vice-chairman was Jae-Sik Moon. Gun-Ho was there as a partner, but he was the one who had the actual power.
The joint venture's office manager lady announced that the first board meeting would start.
The meeting started with Jae-Sik Moon's presentation on the status of the joint venture's current business and progress. Eun-Hwa Jo interpreted what Jae-Sik Moon said from time to time during his presentation. Once Jae-Sik Moon finished his report, the real meeting began. An invisible battle between the chairmanRunsheng Yanand Gun-Ho was about to start.
Mr. Runsheng Yan said, "The terminal construction has started. After completing the civil engineering work, the actual building construction will begin. It is about the time that the Korean partner should send the second investment fund of 5 million dollars as clearly stated in the contract."
Gun-Ho replied, "The land where the terminal is being built must be under the joint venture's name. I haven't been told about the change of ownership to the joint venture's name yet. That has to happen before I could send the second investment fund."
"We are still negotiating with the Construction Bureau right now. The first investment fund has been already exhausted in preparing the transportation business, paying for the civil engineering work, and for fulfilling the reserve for construction. The construction contract to build the terminal was signed by the joint venture. If we can't pay for the next step in the construction, we will have to pay the penalty."
Gun-Ho said as he took a sip of his water, "The land for the terminal must be Zhuanrang land owned by the joint venture."
"Well, here is the permission to use the land issued by the Construction Bureau and their ratification. There are things that we need to follow certain steps for completion. You can't just keep on insisting on changing the ownership of the land. I wonder if you want to continue this joint venture or not."
Mr. Runsheng Yan and Gun-Ho started raising their voices, and other people in the conference room stayed quiet without chipping in.
At that moment, the joint venture's vice presidentChun Changsuggested for them to take a break.
"Let's take a ten-minute break."
After ten minutes, the board meeting resumed.
Mr. Runsheng Yan said, "It cost money to finish the foundation. We have to move on to the next step. We need to design the electricity, environment, sewer system, fire-fighting system, etc. If we don't have money to pay for the next step, the construction will come to a halt."
"If the terminal construction needs to be stopped in the middle of the work, the Chinese partner would be responsible for it, not the Korean partner."
"A new bus line is about to come out for the route that has more than 60% of the load factor. If we don't receive the second investment fund, it will affect that new bus line as well."
"The terminal construction and the intercity bus business are two separate matters. You can't bring the bus business on the table when we are solely talking about the terminal construction."
"If the Korean partner keeps on insisting on the matter about the terminal construction unreasonably, it would certainly affect the existence of the bus terminal business."
"You won't be the judge of whether the Korean partner's position is reasonable or not. I think what the Chinese partner is insisting on is absolutely unreasonable. We should consult a Lushi (attorney) from another area, not this area, on this matter. We want a Lushi to interpret the pertinent law and our contract."
"You do whatever pleases you. The joint venture will not pay for the attorney fee though, not even a penny."
"I won't send the second investment fund either, not even a penny."
"Is that how you work with your partner in a joint venture setting?"
"You are not exactly in the position to say things like that."
The two men raised their voices again. Jae-Sik Moon and Eun-Hwa Jo stared at Gun-Ho Goo. They looked worried and concerned. On the other side of the table, the office manager lady and the accounting manager stared at the transportation company's presidentMr. Runsheng Yan. They looked extremely worried as well.