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50 Acquiring a Korean Restaurant in China 1

 Gun-Ho came back to his hotel room and gave a lot of thought to whether he should acquire that Korean restaurant or not.

"I think I could make about 10,000 Yuan per month with that restaurant. It is certainly not enough for Mr. Byeon who has a child studying abroad."

Gun-Ho thought for a second that Mr. Byeon might be a con-artist.

"He is probably not a con artist. He looks rather like an inept businessman due to his prolonged office job career. Moreover, his nephew is running a restaurant in Noryangjin and I know the location. He wouldn't con me, and I am not the type of person who can easily be deceived."

Gun-Ho took a cigarette.

"Should I take over that restaurant? Maybe I could get a two-bed apartment here and take a walk along West Lake every day. I can get the restaurant for 50 million won out of my 480 million won, and purchase a real estate with the remaining 400 million won. According to Chairman Lee, the price increase of real estate reflects the economic growth rate. So if China's economic growth rate is 30% for three years, the real estate price will increase by 30%, right?"

Gun-Ho calculated quickly.

"If I invest 400 million won in real estate and get 30% gain after three years, I can return to Korea with 520 million won in hand. Even assuming I blew the restaurant business here, I could still hold 520 million won. It's better than placing the money in a bank savings account."

Gun-Ho was thinking while walking around the hotel room.

"Chairman Lee also said there could be a real estate boom which would raise even more real estate price. If the real estate price goes up by 50% after three years, I could go back to Korea with 600 million won. For the three years, I could learn the Chinese language and make that much money. I think that would be a good deal."

Gun-Ho drank two cans of Tsingtao beer that was on the table and fell asleep.

It was the day scheduled for Gun-Ho to return to Korea.

Mr. Byeon came to Hongqiao International Airport in Shanghai to see Gun-Ho off.

"So, have you thought about it?"

"I haven't decided yet."

"We say, 'Think Long, Think Wrong.' Don't think too deeply or too long. Just make a decision. To be honest with you, you can't do anything with 50 million won in Korea."

"Haha. Well..."

"Why don't we make a provisional contract? You can give me a small amount of money as earnest money."

"Provisional contract... Let's just make a contract!"

"Huh? Did you just say you want to make a contract?"

Mr. Byeon was stunned. He didn't expect this since Gun-Ho had been just thinking without giving him any clear reaction to the restaurant deal.

"Did you bring the contract?"

"Yes, I did."

Mr. Byeon pulled out the contract from his envelope that he seemed to carry everywhere and always.

"Wow. The decision came slow but once the decision is made, things have proceeded very quickly."

Gun-Ho and Mr. Byeon made a contract in the waiting area of Hongqiao International Airport.

"The name of the seller is Hee-Yeol Byeon, CEO of Mando Food Co., Ltd.?"

"Right. It was hard to directly run a restaurant as a foreign individual, so I formed a company with a Chinese person just to make it look like the restaurant is being run by a company that is partially owned by Chinese. On the paper, I own 90% and the Chinese person owns 10%, but it is just for the paper."

"Oh, I see."

"Umm... What about the earnest money?"

"You said there is a Kookmin Bank here in Hongqiao, right? I will bring the money."

Mr. Byeon seemed satisfied.

According to the contract, Gun-Ho was supposed to pay off the remaining sales price ten days later.

"The contract is written in Chinese. Once you go back to Korea, have it translated and notarized, and take it to a bank. You will need that translated contract when you send me the money. You can use up to $10,000 without reporting anything for travel, but if you have to send more than $10,000 abroad, you need to file a report."

"I understood."

"Oh, take this one too. You might need it."

"What is this?"

"It's a copy of the business license. You will need this to make an Alien Resident Certificate as well."

"Oh, I see."

"I could receive the money in Korea, but it is better for you to send me to China with all these paperwork. This will prove that you acquire a business in China and you will need it when you have to send money from China to Korea as well."

"I see. Well, thank you."

Gun-Ho put the copy of the restaurant business license in his bag.

Once he came back to Korea, Gun-Ho notified the landlord that he would vacate his room. He wouldn't need room to stay in Korea anymore. He had the sales and purchase agreement of the restaurant and the seller's business license written in Chinese translated into Korean and notarized. He would need them when he had to send money to China.

"Let's go to Incheon to see my parents. It has been a while. I wouldn't be able to see them often once I move to China."

Gun-Ho took the subway line 1 and got off at Incheon Juan Station. Before he went home, he stopped by a market and bought beef leg bones from a butcher's shop.

"I want to get something more."

There was a pharmacy.

"My mom and dad like Bacchus; let's get two boxes of it."

Since he already notified the landlord to vacate the room, there might be someone entering his room to take a look while he was not present, so Gun-Ho brought all the important papers with him in his travel bag. It was heavy. By adding the beef leg bones and two boxes of Bacchus, it became even heavier.

"I can leave the bag to the parents' home when I leave for China."

Gun-Ho kept walking while passing by Juan North Elementary School and a church, and it was tiring.

"My home is so distant from the station. If I make money, I will move my parents to somewhere closer to the station. This is too exhausting."

Gun-Ho's father used to work in a production line for a company in the Juan industrial complex when he was young. After retiring, he opened a small snack restaurant. When it didn't work very well, he took a job at a subcontracting company as a manual worker. He then injured his waist at work during an underground drainage work, so he couldn't work any longer and couldn't make money anymore. That resulted in financial difficulties in the family.

"My dad collapsed once of a heart attack. He was doing better now. Thank God."

Gun-Ho walked up to the third floor of a townhouse with his heavy bag because there was no elevator. He knocked on the door once he arrived at his home.

"Who is it?"

It was his mother.

"Mom, it's me."

The front door opened wide. Gun-Ho's mother looked happy to see him.

"My son is here! What is all this?"

Gun-Ho could smell Doenjang-jjigae. It seemed they were about to have dinner.

"Gun-Ho is here?"

Gun-Ho's father came out in his pajamas. He looked better than the last time Gun-Ho saw him.

"We were about to have dinner. Let's eat together."

"It smells really good. Here it is."

"What is this?"

"Beef leg bones."

"You didn't have to bring these expensive bones. Oh, you bought us Bacchus too. You must be tired by carrying all these heavy stuff."

As his mother took what Gun-Ho brought, she smiled.

Mother's Doenjang-jjigae was really good.

"It is so nice to have homemade food. It has been a while."

"Eat more. I just cooked the rice too. It should be good."

Gun-Ho had two bowls of rice with Doenjang-jjigae. His parents looked happy while watching their son eating.

"Why don't you eat? Why do you keep staring at my face?"

"We are just happy to see our son eating."

"How are you, dad? How are you feeling?"

"I feel much better because of you, son. I would have died if you didn't send me the money for my surgery."

"Don't say that."

"Your father is receiving the old-age pension of 200,000 won every month, and he goes to Jongno 3-ga District every single day."

"Jongno 3-ga? For what?"

"There is Tapgol Park there where old people are gathering together all the time."

Gun-Ho chuckled while having his dinner.

"By the way, what is that travel bag?"

"My clothes and books. I will leave them here. I'm going to China."

"China?"

Gun-Ho's mother and father looked at Gun-Ho in surprise.