Li Yao wasn't perturbed in the least by the breakdown in negotiations with the Zephyr Guild.
In the case of commercial negotiations, when both parties didn't come to an agreement, it was quite normal.
However, Gao Guanyu's words woke him.
The utility patents were only valid for three years.
After three years, the Demon Beast Detector's design would no longer be protected by patent laws, giving anyone an open invitation to craft similar magical equipment.
If he wanted to commercialize, then the sooner the better.
However, meticulously crafting and polishing a Demon Beast Detector with his own hands in a few days' time was one thing while using a production line to mass produce the detector another.
Not to mention the fact that he simply didn't have a 'Mystic Laser Micro-Engraving Machine'-like equipment for mass production. He also needed to consider advertising and marketing, distribution channels, after-sales services, starting capital, so on and so forth which would be required after the production.
None of these problems could be solved by him alone.
Having wracked his brain and still without a solution, Li Yao could only seek advice from Yuan Manqiu.
Yuan Manqiu was someone who had been in the refining community for a couple of decades and was a Big Sis in name and in fact. She had applied for hundreds of patents and thereby had long been adept at commercializing a patent. The first sentence that just came out of her mouth was enough to amaze Li Yao.
"First, you can set up your own sect.
"Don't look at me like that, is founding a sect so amazing? Nowadays, the federation, in order to inspire the young to be creative, is very supportive of young cultivators starting their own businesses.
"Nowadays, establishing your own sect in university is a trend.
"Many of your seniors in the institute have partnered up with each other and have created their own sects. The institute also wholeheartedly supports it.
"Moreover, you are not only an undergraduate but also a Class 1 Federation Disabled Soldier. If you were to establish your own clan, you will get a preferential treatment in regards to tax, bank loans, and other similar stuff.
"After founding your own clan, you can mass-produce Demon Beast Detectors. Of course, you will need a large investment during the early stages for which you can take a loan from the bank or go to some youth entrepreneurship expo to find someone to invest in you.
"Nowadays, many large sects are very happy to discover small sects with good potential at youth entrepreneurship expos and invest in them.
"In my opinion, the Demon Beast Detector does have very good potential. A small sect with it as the core product would be very popular in the youth entrepreneurship expo.
"If you're lucky, maybe a big sect would ready to spend a huge sum to directly buy your small sect.
"That way, not only can you get a lot of money, you can also directly become an elder like figure in a large sect. You could reach the dazzling heights in a single bound!"
Yuan Manqiu's advice made Li Yao's heart beat like crazy.
Establishing one's own sect?
It sounded quite amazing.
However, having thought of it carefully, he still gave up on this notion.
Setting up a clan wasn't as simple as it sounded. Whether it was going to the bank to apply for a loan or finding some investors in a youth entrepreneurship expo, very tedious things would need to be dealt with.
This was precisely the domain of admin-type cultivators.
And Li Yao wasn't an admin-type cultivator, not to mention the fact that he only liked two things, one was to indulge himself in the complex and profound world of magical equipment and the other was to slaughter in a blood-soaked battlefield.
These two things already took up most of his time and energy.
Meanwhile, he would also pay a great deal of time and effort for the upcoming Refiners' Registration Examination.
Even if he passed the test, he still had Project Mystic Skeleton to focus on.
He really had no extra time or energy to operate a sect.
Seeing Li Yao reject the first proposition, Yuan Manqiu wasn't surprised. She continued, "If you don't want to create your own sect to produce Demon Beast Detector, you can only work with another sect.
"However, the cooperation depends on what kind of sect it is.
"Although big sects on the scale of Zephyr Guild are quite experienced in producing such equipment and have complete marketing networks, they are too big. It would be very difficult for them to treat you as an equal. Quite often, they want to buy and sell in one shot; they would directly buy your patent rather than cooperating with you.
"If you want to keep the patent, your only choice is to work with a second or third-grade sect. Sects like those don't have the powerful technology or have the capability for further research and development. Therefore, they don't need your patent, all they need from you are exclusive production rights, that's all.
"Of course, this way, the price needs to be a bit lower, moreover, small sects don't have complete marketing networks like Zephyr Guild. Also, there is the problem of quality control with the mass production of magical equipment.
"Because of this, choosing a small sect that knows what they are doing is equally important.
"Li Yao, what do you think of Mountain Sea Sect?"
Apparently, Yuan Manqiu had figured more than the plan. Since Li Yao had asked, she threw him the best plan she could think off.
"Mountain Sea Sect?" Li Yao briefly pondered.
He had a very good impression of Mountain Sea Sect.
Not only the logistics supervisor of Mountain Sea Sect, Jiang Wenbo, is the guest professor of Refining Department whom Li Yao thinks of as a teacher.
The Building Foundation Stage cultivator of Mountain Sea Sect, Guan Xiang was his savior who also vouched for him when Li Yao became a cultivator.
Li Yao had met Jiang Wenbo and Guan Xiong a couple of times over the past year. He had a pretty good relationship with both of them. Also, the Mountain Sea Sect was a sponsor of Grand Desolate War Institution's Refining Department. Now that a student of the Refining Department had shown some results, cooperating with the Mountain Sea Sect was only proper.
"I hear that the Mountain Sea Sect has been operating in the red for the past two years?"
Yuan Manqiu didn't hide it before she continued in natural, poised manner, "For over a century, the Mountain Sea Sect had been a second or third-grade weak sect which didn't even have a Core Formation Stage powerhouse. And in the last few decades, their luck hasn't been so great. First, their former elder had failed to advance to the Core Formation Stage and was seriously injured, which resulted in a big drop in their share prices; the Mountain Sea Sect suffered a heavy loss. Afterward, another of their experts, Guan Xiong had been poisoned by demonic energy during a beast tide, as a result of which, he fell to the intermediate level of Building Foundation Stage from his previous high-level.
"Having lost their two high-level experts who could hunt high-level demon beasts, venture deep into the Wasteland, and explore mines, the Mountain Sea Sect was unable to expand their high-profit business like military contracts from the federation, which made it difficult for them to operate.
"However, the Mountain Sea Sect has survived in the Wasteland for over a century, they are well-established and have marketing network across various cities in the Wasteland, and also have a certain reputation.
"The main market of the Demon Beast Detector is the Wasteland. Even if the inland cultivators had to venture deep into the Wasteland to hunt demon beasts, they would have to first rest at the forward bases. With the advertising and distribution capabilities of the Mountain Sea Sect, it would be a piece of cake to fully cover these important sites.
"Another most crucial point is in their production capabilities.
"Originally, the Mountain Sea Sect wasn't a sect based on refining, but for the sake of a complete transformation, they spent a great deal of money to import a production line comprising of a Mystic Laser Micro-Engraving Machine and various mini-components.
"This production line is very advanced and can be used for refining spirit watches. Although the components of Demon Beast Detector are quite ingenious, in terms of sophistication, there is still a certain difference with the spirit watch.
"In other words, the Mountain Sea Sect is completely capable of mass producing the Demon Beast Detector.
"On another note, the Mountain Sea Sect's technical abilities aren't that great whether it is their newly established R&D center or their elders. The head of their R&D center is Old Jiang who is a Refiner from the grassroots faction and doesn't specialize in crafting precision magical equipment. For technical stuff, they'd still have to rely on your support.
"As a result, you have the technology while the Mountain Sea Sect have the labor, money, production equipment, and marketing network. Both sides are highly complementary to each other. In terms of cooperation, you seem quite compatible."
Having heard Yuan Manqiu's analysis, Li Yao nodded again and again.
The Mountain Sea Sect was indeed the best partner considering his current situation.
After hesitating for a moment, Li Yao asked, "However, would the Mountain Sea Sect be willing to work with me, or would I have to talk with Teacher Jiang first?"
Yuan Manqiu slightly smiled, "What is there to talk about?! Just take the initiative to talk with him and then you just have to wait for him to come and visit!
"I have already sent your combat videos of Thunderbolt Cup and some of your fights in the Wasteland to Old Jiang and also told him that you'd got a patent as well.
"With his insight, he should be able to see the prospects of this patent.
"Furthermore, with the current plight of Mountain Sea Sect, this piece of magical equipment is simply tailored for them.
"All you have to do is think about the terms and conditions you would propose to the Mountain Sea Sect!"
Having explained all that, Yuan Manqiu said nothing else.
Li Yao didn't have to wait for the next day. On that very night, having finished watching Li Yao's combat videos and carefully reading the detailed description of Demon Beast Detector, Jiang Wenbo sent a spiritual crane message to Li Yao rather excitedly.
The Demon Beast Detector was quite appetizing to the Mountain Sea Sect!
Right now, the Mountain Sea Sect was in a very awkward situation.
Taking a bank loan and spending a great deal of money to set up a production line to mass produce spirit watches had all been a waste for the Mountain Sea Sect. All of the spirit watches were stored in their warehouse; each piece they refined was nothing but loss.
Having been unable to produce anything, the production line was just idling. The monthly interest alone on the bank loans was an astronomical figure.
They wanted to sell the entire production line but finding a right buyer was easier said than done. Not to mention that the selling price was also quite low. As the matter stood, the losses they'd suffered were simply shocking.
What's more, what would the Mountain Sea Sect do after selling their assembly line?
With the appearance of the Demon Beast Detector, the Mountain Sea Sect, from top to bottom, was quite excited.
With Guan Xiong acting as the leading battle-type cultivator who often hunted the demon beasts in the Wasteland, they were quite confident with the market prospects of the Demon Beast Detector.
More importantly, the production line imported for crafting the spirit watches could be used to mass produce the Demon Beast Detectors with just a few modifications and without any technical difficulties.
Instead of competing in a competitive and mature market of spirit watches with traditional giants like Zephyr Guild, they might as well try to step into a new market!
Even if the sales aren't high, as long as they could repay the bank loan's interest every month, it would be better than keeping the production line idle!
With such calculations and after a fierce day and night discussion, the upper and lower management of Mountain Sea Sect finally reached an agreement and decided to fully cooperate with Li Yao to produce the Demon Beast Detector!
Sorry guys, my bad, I was a bit preoccupied with a family emergency. I promise I will make up for the missing chapters in this week somehow.
Sorry for the inconvenience.
On another note, multiple chapters will be released today.