The reputation of the Sheng’an Group on the Internet plummeted again.
But Yao Shengan could also be considered a generation’s formidable character. He was able to establish the Sheng’an Group from scratch, so he had been accustomed to big storms over these many years. Naturally, he would not surrender because of Tao Mu’s single move.
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Although he had fallen into a desperate situation, Yao Shengan could still fight back.
He directly ordered all chain restaurants under the Sheng’an Group to offer a 50% discount. It had to be said that even if Yao Shengan’s character was something to be criticized, his cooking skills had always been good and his management of the restaurants was also very strict. The reputation of the restaurant chain under the Sheng’an Group had always won the trust of people in Shanghai.
It was just that before that, the Sheng’an Group had always been in the mid-to-high-end price. In 2008, going to a restaurant chain under the Sheng’an Group to eat would cost more than 1,000 yuan for a table without drinks. Therefore, even if many people in Shanghai had heard of its name for a long time, they had never eaten the dishes of the restaurants under the Sheng’an Group.
This time, the Sheng’an Group directly launched a half-price event——the common people didn’t care about the grievances between corporations. Of course, they would swarm over after seeing the cheap prices. So the Shanghainese, who had never tasted high-end dishes, took their families to patronize the restaurants under the Sheng’an Group. All of a sudden, the restaurant chain that was originally affected by the scandal was full of business again.
In addition, Yao Shengan also had the restaurant chain under the Sheng’an Group launch a white-collar meal delivery event——combining the most distinctive dishes of the Sheng’an restaurants, the total being three dishes and two bowls of rice to form a box lunch set. Each box lunch was at a special price of 38 yuan, and it also included door-to-door service. Yao Shengan directly hired social idlers to form a meal delivery team, directly providing nearly a hundred jobs for Shanghai.
Under Yao Shengan’s operation, this move was directly praised by the government.
The business of Sheng’an Group was booming again, and its reputation had been reversed. Yao Shengan could finally breathe a sigh of relief and have the energy to discuss with the Shen family about the specific issues of borrowing funds to solve the stock market problem. After all, the Sheng’an Group was a listed company and could not be suspended for too long. Taking advantage of the current hot momentum to hold the market (TN: the practice of placing active or pending orders for a security into a market where the price is dropping rapidly in an attempt to “hold” the price of the security steady, or create a floor in the security), he would then operate some more on the court side, and discuss an out-of-court settlement with those catering groups. Businessmen valued profits. There was nothing that money could not solve. If there was, then that was just because the money was not enough.
When the Sheng’an Group reached a settlement with the several other catering companies and their bank account was unblocked, then this crisis would pass. Although there were damages, there was no more danger.
As for Tao Mu and his FlyNews, Yao Shengan sneered. It was never too late for a gentleman to take revenge. A mere newly established website, Yao Shengan really didn’t have much regard for it in his eyes.
However, Yao Shengan’s calculations were good, but things were not willing to develop in the direction he hoped.
On the day Yao Shengan approached the Shen family for help, a newspaper in Shanghai suddenly broke the news about the use of waste oil by the Sheng’an Group. (TN: cooking oil that has been used and discarded and, in China, sometimes illegally recovered from gutters and sewers, reprocessed and sold back to restaurants)
Although Chinese people didn’t pay much attention to hygienic food safety, and even the older generation often had the mentality of “not eating cleanly and not getting sick”. However, there was still an inseparable gap between “not clean” and “getting sick after eating.”
Everyone knew what waste oil was. Even some people who didn’t know would know clearly after a certain newspaper reported in detail the manufacturing process of waste oil and its harm to the human body.
FlyNews had been following all news related to Sheng’an Group. Seeing this news——especially the report from a certain newspaper. In order to demonstrate the authenticity and accuracy of the news, they had attached a large front page picture, which clearly showed waste oil hawkers sending waste oil to the restaurants and hotels under the Sheng’an Group.
The evidence was conclusive! Excited, Liu Yao slapped his thigh and applauded as he signaled FlyNews Entertainment to repost and frantically push it on the Internet. In less than half an hour, the hot news about the purchase of waste oil by the restaurant chain of Sheng’an Group had spread all over the Internet.
Ensuring that it could be seen in all of China’s 9.6 million square kilometers where there was internet connection.
If it was said that the various nasty methods used by Yao Shengan and Sheng’an Group in their business competitions were all after dinner chat material and no one really cared. Then the news of the use of waste oil in the restaurants and hotels under the Sheng’an Group that came out at this time truly affected the hearts of the people. It would also shake the foundation of the Sheng’an Group.
The people of China believe in “food is the God of the people” (TN: people view food as the primary need), and such a proverb passed down by our ancestors thousands of years ago would not be wrong. The common people might not care whether Yao Shengan was a good person or what kind of business methods the Sheng’an Group used in commercial competition, but they absolutely cared whether the things made by their restaurants could cause health problems.
Shen Chen handed the newspaper to Yao Sheng’an, and calmly refused: “Grandpa Yao, I sympathize with the current situation of the Sheng’an Group. But the scandal facing the Sheng’an Group is really too fatal. If you can’t solve this issue, then the Shen Group dare not lend a huge amount of money to the Sheng’an Group. We doubt whether the Sheng’an Group has the ability to repay the money.”
After a pause, Shen Chen looked at Yao Shengan and said apologetically: “I’m sorry, Grandpa Yao. The Shen Group does not only belong to the Shen family. We must consider the views of the shareholders as well.”
Of course Yao Shengan understood this. But what he didn’t understand was how the Sheng’an Group had anything to do with waste oil. The one who was in charge of purchasing things for the restaurants and hotels was his most loyal and trusted son-in-law. This son-in-law was loyal and had always been steadfast in doing things. It was impossible for him to do such shoddy things.
Yao Shengan’s face was pale, and he left the Shen family’s house without saying a word. The top priority now was investigating this matter clearly. See if the problem came from themselves, or someone was deliberately framing them——
When something like this happened, Tao Mu was the first person Yao Shengan suspected. Nor could he be blamed for this. It was because Tao Mu impressed him too deeply. Even though Tao Mu was frank and candid in this whole incident, both of them knew that Tao Mu was definitely a ruthless person who would stop at nothing to achieve his goals.
Yao Shengan could be sure that if necessary, Tao Mu definitely had the capability to carry out this kind of deliberate framing.
But Yao Shengan really wronged Tao Mu this time. Tao Mu, who was far away in Beijing, was also puzzled: “The catering under the Sheng’an Group used waste oil for cooking? This is impossible, right? Yao Shengan should not be this kind of person.”
It must be said that because of the grievances that stretched back to the last life, Tao Mu knew very clearly about all of Shen Yu’s admirers, including their family members. In Tao Mu’s impression, although Yao Shengan’s character was not very good, he still had professional ethics. He would never do such a thing as adding waste oil to his dishes to destroy his reputation. Even the manager in charge of procurement in the catering department under the Sheng’an Group, the son-in-law of the Yao family, was also an honest person. Such an honest and conscientious person couldn’t do this kind of thing.
“It wouldn’t be that he provided black material to smear himself, and then think of a way to reverse the tables and whitewash himself?” Tao Mu could not be blamed for guessing so. The media revelations that could be compared to the plot of TV series in his previous life really left a deep shadow on him. Even the general melon eating public had become accustomed to the melon eating rhythm of “waiting three days after seeing the news, three days later there will definitely be a reversal”.
Yao Wenxiao’s Yuxiao Media used to do such things in his previous life and Tao Mu had become quite used to it. It was no wonder that when he saw this news, he subconsciously wondered if Yao Wenxiao had learned to do this kind of thing again.
Most people sympathize with the weak and also possess a certain degree of rebellious psychology. Now the whole Internet was blacking the Sheng’an Group, and the media was also following suit to report various black materials of the Sheng’an Group. Tao Mu paid attention to the gossip newspapers in Shanghai. Some people even said that the Yao family was arrogant and domineering in public places. Of course, most of the media who dared to target the Yao family’s main branch were instigated by Yao Wenxiao. The purpose was probably the final reversal in Tao Mu’s conjecture. It was just that under Tao Mu’s conscious control, few people paid attention to this kind of small gossip.
But the breaking news that the Sheng’an Group’s restaurants used waste oil was different. Once the Sheng’an Group reversed this matter and whitewashed themselves, it might really arouse the rebellious psychology of netizens. At that time, if Yao Wenxiao lead the public to believe something——for example, slandering Tao Mu and accusing him of instructing people to make up black materials to discredit the Sheng’an Group, maybe he would really manage to splash a basin of dirty water on him and FlyNews.
Liu Yao and Meng Qi also felt regret after hearing Tao Mu’s analysis. Meng Qi frowned and said, “Then what should we do now? It’s my fault, I was too anxious. If only I came to discuss with you first.”
“It’s okay. Since Yao Wenxiao has already handed us the ladder, If I don’t take this opportunity to create a persona, it would be a waste.” Tao Mu wiggled his fingers, even if Yao Wenxiao was a prodigy in the media industry, in front of an old veteran like him who had been slandered for ten years, this capability was not enough.
Taking advantage of Yao Wenxiao’s reversal having not yet begun——Tao Mu estimated that Yao Wenxiao wanted to wait for this period of scandal to brew for a period of time, preferably until a day later when the entire Internet was talking about this. And then tomorrow morning, he would do the reversal and carry out the face-slapping. From the perspective of communication studies and communication psychology, this pattern was the most appropriate. When the time came, all he needed to do was to sell a pitiful act, and create a tragic image of a hero’s end, the tree toppling and the monkeys scattering, and everybody giving a push to a wall about to collapse. Selling a miserable image plus grabbing the people’s hearts, and on the way, splashing dirty water on him and his FlyNews.
——However, there was no use. Tao Mu, who had consciously seen through Yao Wenxiao’s performance, directly opened the document writer, typed out a large piece of text, and uploaded it to his FlyNews account.
Tao Mu’s main purpose of writing this article was to express that although he despised Yao Shengan’s character, he still believed in Yao Shengan’s professional ethics.
“…..Even if Yao Shengan is all kinds of immoral, I still believe in the family education of the Song family. After all, Yao Shengan was the big apprentice personally taught by the patriarch of the Song family. Even though this person is extremely shameless in betraying his teacher, I still believe that Yao Shengan will not fool the diners on such things as the ingredients used to make the food. Because “food is the God of the people” is the family motto carved into the bones of the Song family. I believe that it is not only the Song family, but also all people who work in catering with a little conscience and moral integrity will follow the relevant food safety regulations. They will not do stupid things like self-destroying their reputation.”
In the sight of the universal condemnations and cursing from the public, Tao Mu was able to defend Yao Shengan against the scolding of the people——although this article was full of bias and shameless self-praise that was simply arrogant to the extreme. In fact, if this was posted in the fan circle it would definitely be ridiculed by fans from all walks of life, and then directly blacklisted. However, the unequivocal trust in Yao Shengan’s professional ethics still made Yao Shengan instantly feel a little bit of the emotion “people die for confidantes”.
However, there was no use. The so-called cutting off one’s livelihood was like killing one’s parents. After this brief moment of being touched, Yao Shengan gritted his teeth with hatred towards Tao Mu. The kind that wished nothing more than to flay off his skin if he ever got the chance.
Tao Mu posted an article in time to make sure that he and FlyNews would not fall into a situation where he and FlyNews would have dirty water thrown on them. The disadvantage was that some people now insist with stubbornness that he was a “pure and beautiful, white lotus flower”, and some antis criticized him for “being hypocritical and pretentious.” But these had nothing to do with Tao Mu and he could finally eat melons at ease.
However, what Tao Mu did not expect was that the waste oil incident regarding the Sheng’an Group was really not Yao Wenxiao’s attempt to do a reversal and then whitewash——it was the doing of the head of the catering procurement department of the Sheng’an Group——the son-in-law that everyone had believed to be honest and conscientious but had actually secretly lost a lot of money in gambling and then borrowed from loan sharks and was now unable to pay pack the high interest but did not dare to reveal this to anyone.
Because what Yao Shengan hated most in his life was gambling and drugs, and the Yao family’s family teachings decreed that they must absolutely not partake in either of them. The son-in-law was cowardly, and he originally could not hold his head up high in the Yao family. What was more, he was highly regarded by Yao Shengan, and was the head of the procurement department, which made the rest of the Yao family jealous. They wanted nothing more than to grab his weakness and push him down to replace him with themselves.
This son-in-law tried his hardest to keep it secret and in the end was forced to find a way to gather money through the procurement channels. What he originally wanted was to cut corners and be shoddy on the ingredients for a few months, and once he had paid the loan sharks the waste oil would immediately cease in use. But who knew that at this juncture, the Sheng’an Group met with trouble.
Yao Shengan really did not expect that he would trip up in the hands of his most trusted son-in-law. Immediately learning this, he almost had a heart attack from the anger. The Sheng’an Group waste oil scandal was now verified with solid proof. The reputation of the corporation plummeted, and many shareholders also wanted to withdraw their capital.
At this critical juncture, Yao Shengan could only find the Shen family again for help. Shen Chen, on behalf of the Shen Group, agreed to Yao Shengan’s request. But the conditions were different now——instead of lending funds for the Sheng’an Group to hold the market, the Shen Group wanted to directly invest in the Sheng’an Group.
The Shen family’s purpose was clear, and it was at this time Yao Shengan suddenly came back to his senses: “Luring Wen Yuan to become addicted to gambling and doing something like borrowing from loan sharks, and then instigating him to secretly switch to waste oil to pay back the money is your doing, isn’t it? You Shen family members really have wolf ambitions. All this time, I actually didn’t see through this at all.”
Shen Chen lowered his eyes, and said softly, “Grandpa Yao, you misunderstood. The Shen family and Yao family are family friends. How could our Shen family do such a thing? I understand you, the Sheng’an Group has encountered such a big incident, and you are mentally exhausted. But I hope you won’t damage the friendship between our two families.”
Yao Shengan realized with shock. At this point, regardless of whether the Shen family did it or not, he couldn’t directly become hostile with the Shen family.
Yao Shengan’s face eased slightly, and he said apologetically, “You’re right. I’ve been so stricken by these things recently, and felt that everyone I see wants to harm the Sheng’an Group. Grandpa is old and lacks energy, so occasionally I get confused too. Don’t mind me.”
“Of course not. Our two families are family friends.” Shen Chen casually hooked up the corner of his mouth, and soothed: “Grandpa Yao, don’t blame our Shen family for taking advantage. It is really because the amount of funds that the Sheng’an Group wants to borrow is too large. The Sheng’an Group is now in such a situation, so if there is not enough interest, I have no way to convince the board of directors.”
“You are right.” Yao Shengan said in a deep voice, “Then, if I agree to the capital injection of the Shen Group, how many shares do you want?”
“The Shen family and the Yao family are family friends. Of course, we will not touch the cake of the Yao family. Don’t the shareholders of Sheng’an Group want to divest? We can directly use the money to buy this part of the shares. As for the funds to hold the market, this part of the funds will be in accordance with the ratio of our two families’ capital contributions to exchange shares.”
Yao Shengan’s face sank. Sure enough, the Shen family was very ambitious and wanted to take control of the Sheng’an Group.
Shen Chen looked at Yao Shengan’s shifting expressions, and slowly said, “Grandpa Yao, don’t worry. Our Shen family has a good reason for doing this. As for after the injection of capital into the Sheng’an Group, the Shen Group will never interfere with the Sheng’an Group’s day-to-day operation and management of the company. Grandpa Yao can continue to be your group chairman. And we will only add some of our own financial staff.”
Yao Shengan sneered. Of course the Shen family would not participate in the normal operation of the Sheng’an Group. Did anyone in their Shen family even know how to cook and understand restaurant management? Saying these words was nothing but nonsense that didn’t cost anything.
Shen Chen paused, and then said, “In fact, think about it from another angle. At this time, the Shen Group’s injection of capital into the Sheng’an Group is also a boost for the Sheng’an Group. The reputation of the Sheng’an Group is too terrible now. If there is our Shen Group to provide some help at this time, I believe it will be easier to resume trading.”
The matter being what it was, even if Yao Shengan was not reconciled with it, there was nothing he could do——if there was no capital injection from the Shen family, it would be difficult for his Yao family to survive this hurdle.
Upon seeing this, Shen Chen knew that Yao Shengan had temporarily compromised.
The news of the Shen Group’s capital injection into the Sheng’an Group soon spread in the Shanghai city business circle. Following the press conference jointly held by the two major groups, the Sheng’an Group finally chose to resume trading in the stock market. As Shen Chen said before, the capital injection of the Shen Group had indeed become a booster for the Sheng’an Group. After the press conference, the stock price of the Sheng’an Group, which resumed trading directly, stabilized and even grew slowly a little bit.
At the same time, the share price of the Shen Group, which directly injected capital into the Sheng’an Group, increased significantly. Seeing that the situation improved, Yao Shengan and the Yao family, who had been worried, finally breathed a sigh of relief.
However, such a good momentum did not last long. On the second day when the Sheng’an Group resumed trading, an unknown force suddenly appeared on the stock market to attack the Sheng’an Group’s share price. This group of people was very precise in their trading, and their methods were very powerful. It could be seen that they should be a professional trading team.
Under the operation of this group of people, the stock price of the Sheng’an Group plummeted again. Even the Shen Group, which had just injected capital into the Sheng’an Group and took out a huge fund to hold the market, were affected and suffered heavy losses.
Li Xiaoheng, who had not made a move the whole time until now, watched the stock price of the Sheng’an Group plummeting like a bungee jumper, and pushed up the gold rimless glasses on the bridge of his nose.
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He had said at the outset that if the Sheng’an Group affected the interests of Xiaoheng Capital because of their targeting of his personal consultant, he would never tolerate it.
Adults must speak credibly. If he said that he would teach you to be a person in the stock market, then he must not break his promise.
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