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Home > Story of a Big Player from Gangnam

90 Land Auction – PART 1

 Gun-Ho received a call from Suk-Ho who was running a bar in Gyeongridan Street.

"Gun-Ho? It's me, Suk-Ho."

"Suk-Ho? What's up?"

"Did you open a new business? I heard from Min-Hyeok."

"Yeah, it's a small real estate company. It's in a small office-tel with two employees."

"That's awesome, man. So you do buy or sell a real estate for a client? According to Min-Hyeok, you acquired a OneRoomTel and you are operating it."

"Yeah, we do run a OneRoomTel, but it is really a small company."

"Jong-Suk is coming to my bar tomorrow, and I will come by your office with him."

"Isn't he going to work tomorrow? It's not even Sunday."

"Oh, he is working tomorrow. He just needs to come to Seoul around lunchtime to buy a motor at a hardware store in Euljiro 3-ga, so I asked him to have lunch with me since he is coming all the way to Seoul.

"Why don't you then come to my office? I will buy you guys lunch."

The following day, Suk-Ho and Jong-Suk came to Gun-Ho's office.

They expected to see a small office, but Gun-Ho's office was 30 pyung large. They were surprised. In addition, Manager Kang and Ji-Young were working seriously at their desks, that made them enter the office quietly.

"Have a seat. I'm sorry that the office is a bit small."

"It is nice."

Suk-Ho and Jong-Suk looked around the office.

Ji-Young brought them green tea.

"Thank... thank you."

Suk-Ho and Jong-Suk were usually noisy laughing and shouting at each other when they were together, but they were very quiet and calm that day, maybe because there were serious workers working in the office: Manager Kang and Ji-Young.

"You haven't had lunch yet, right? Let's get out of here!"

They went to a Chinese restaurant, 'Sin Tai Fung' close to the Gangnam Subway Station.

The restaurant looked expensive. Jong-Suk suggested going somewhere else for lunch.

"Let's just eat here. It's okay. I will order less pricey dishes."

"Please get us a course-A."

Gun-Ho ordered.

Xiaolongbao,* shrimp and vegetables, and spring rolls were being put on the table.

"Let's have some beer too."

Jong-Suk and Suk-Ho were eating without a word.

"What's wrong with you guys? Jong-Suk, don't act funny. You are supposed to be talkative."

"Huh? Okay, bro. But these days, you are moving forward too quickly. You seemed to be someone else, not my bro. I feel kind of difficult around you."

"Haha. What are you talking about? I haven't changed. I'm still the same Gun-Ho Goo, man."

Suk-Ho asked while having a Xiaolongbao.

"Isn't the OneRoomTel in the Gangnam area expensive? Min-Hyeok said you have more than one OneRoomTel in the area. You are rich, man."

"Nah, there were tons of really rich people in Gangnam."

"Maybe I should sell my bar business and start running a OneRoomTel. How much is the one where Min-Hyeok is working as a residential manager?"

"It's about 300 million won. I have three OneRoomTels: one in Bangbae Town, another one in Seocho Town, and the last one in Daechi Town. They cost me almost 900 million won."

"What? 900 million won?"

Jong-Suk and Suk-Ho were astonished. Gun-Ho thought in mind,

'If you knew I have 16.4 billion won in cash, you would faint.'

"Man, I think you are the most successful man among our friends from high school."

"Nah, I don't think so. There is Won-Chul Jo who graduated from Yonsei University, and he is working in a big company. Also, how about Byung-Tae Hwang? He graduated from KAIST and he is working in a research facility in Pangyo. I can't compete with them."

"No, they are just an employee who is getting a fixed salary from a company."

"Haha. Stop your nonsense. Drink your beer."

Gun-Ho poured beer in Suk-Ho's glass.

"Bro, are you still living in Yeongdeungpo? It's kind of far to commute from there."

"No, I already moved."

"To where? Around here?"

"Yeah, in Dogok Town. I bought a condo."

"You bought a condo? Which one?"

"TowerPalace in Dogok Town. I bought it at an auction."

"What? TowerPalace?"

Jong-Suk and Suk-Ho looked at each other in surprise.

"That condo is extremely expensive. What about your parents? Are they still living in Juan, Incheon?"

"No, I bought a condo for them too. They are now living in a HillState condo in Guweol Town. It's 50 pyung large."

"Really?"

Jong-Suk spilled his beer while listening to Gun-Ho.

Jong-Suk and Suk-Ho kept eating with their hardened faces.

After lunch, Gun-Ho came back to his office and started reading a newspaper until he fell asleep. He woke up when his phone began ringing. The call was from a very long number; it was probably an international call.

"Voice phishing?"

Gun-Ho ignored and clicked the hang-up button.

The phone started ringing again from the same number.

"Who the hell? Hello!"

"Oh! Gjien Hao?" (Gun-Ho Goo in Chinese)

It had been a while since Gun-Ho heard his name in Chinese.

"Ni Shi Naweia?" (Who is calling?)

"Oh, it's me, Jien Wang. The professor at Zhejiang University." (No more Chinese translation from here)

"Oh, wow. Professor Wang. It has been a while. How have you been?"

"Hey, I'm coming to Seoul soon. I've been invited by the famous C Media. I will attend a forum on economics held by the C Media."

"Oh, really? That's nice. Come, let's meet and catch up. I want to see you, friend."

Manager Kang and Ji-Young were looking at Gun-Ho in surprise while Gun-Ho was talking on the phone in his fluent Chinese.

"Whoa, our CEO speaks Chinese fluently!"

They were amazed by Gun-Ho's fluency in Chinese.

Gun-Ho continued talking with Professor Wang.

"I'm coming to Korea with Seukang Li."

"Oh, the vice director guy in Shanghai City Construction Bureau."

"Yeah, except he is now a deputy mayor in a small city close to Shanghai."

"Really? That's good. Come quick, friend. I will buy you a drink."

"I won't have much time since I have to attend some meetings and a forum, but I will have one free day. I will let you know once the schedule is set."

"Okay. Talk to you later."

After Gun-Ho hung up the phone, Manager Kang said in amazement.

"Sir, you speak Chinese very very well."

"Not really. If someone who studied Chinese in college saw me speaking in Chinese, they will know I am not that fluent."

Ji-Young said,

"Sir, did you go to a college in China?"

"Yes, in fact, I did. I went to college there."

"I knew it. The call was from one of your classmates in college then?"

"He is not my classmate in college, but my good friends are coming to Korea soon."

"Oh, then your friends are businessmen."

"No, actually, one is a professor at Zhejiang University, and the other is a deputy mayor in a small city close to Shanghai. They are coming to attend an economic forum held by C Media."

"A professor and a deputy mayor?"

Manager Kang and Ji-Young looked at each other in surprise.

Gun-Ho hadn't thought about China until then.

"That's right. Let's grow GH Development and go to China which has a larger market."

Gun-Ho was filled with aspiration.

"I am currently doing leasing service of a small real estate, but this is just a start. I will diversify my business and get into various fields like automobile, tourism, transportation, chemicals, etc. and make GH Development Company the GH Group."

Gun-Ho wanted to relax his body and take a sauna, so he drove outside Gangnam. He wanted to get out of the busy Gangnam area for a while. He went to a sauna that was located inside the Education Community Center building. He washed his body with soap slowly while thinking.

'Let's erase my past self. I am born again. There are so many things I have to learn. Let's keep in touch with Professor Wang who is an intellectual and read more books.'

After having a sauna, Gun-Ho walked along the river in Yangjae Town. He aspired to enter the bigger market abroad someday.

Note*

Xiaolongbao - Chinese steamed bun