“What a dreadful fellow!”
The Shen family house.
Father Shen and Shen Chen were in the study, looking at today’s closing market price displayed on the computer screen and unconsciously sighed silently.
Shen Chen was silent for a while, and then slowly said: “What a waste for all that effort. I thought that by going back to Shanghai to make arrangements in advance, I would take the lead, but I didn’t expect Li Xiaoheng to be the oriole in the back while the mantis stalks the cicada.”
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With Li Xiaoheng’s trading skills, if he deliberately hid his trace, no one could see that the attack on the Sheng’an Group was from Xiaoheng Capital. And in reality this was exactly what happened. Xiaoheng Capital’s attack on the Sheng’an Group was carried out for three to four days, and the people of the Sheng’an Group and the Shen Group were still being beaten silly. In the end, the breakthrough could only be found on Tao Mu’s side, as Tao Mu’s circle of friends included Li Xiaoheng.
But if it came to conclusive evidence, the Shen family still didn’t have it. But even so, Shen Chen still concluded that Li Xiaoheng was the one who attacked the Sheng’an Group——apart from him and his team, it was estimated that no one in China possessed such neat and traceless trading skills.
“But there is one thing I’m very puzzled about.” Father Shen frowned: “This Li Xiaoheng, didn’t he always trade in the international financial market before? I have never heard of him being interested in the domestic stock market. Why did he suddenly make a move this time? And it is aimed at a catering corporation that has nothing to do with the financial industry? Is his personal relationship with Tao Mu really so good?”
Shen Chen was silent for a moment, and said, “Probably so.”
“Oh?” Father Shen raised his eyebrows, he then subconsciously thought of their family’s Shen Yu: “You are saying, is it possible that this Li Xiaoheng has feelings for Tao Mu, so he took this action to win the favor of the beauty?”
Shen Chen frowned, inexplicably displeased: “It should not be. I sent someone to investigate Tao Mu and found that Tao Mu not only made a name for himself in the IT field, but is also Li Xiaoheng’s private investment consultant. The two have partnered to short oil in the international futures market and Li Xiaoheng seems to value his partner very much. When Yao Shengan first entered Beijing, he wanted to use the strong capital of the Sheng’an Group to overwhelm Tao Mu. But Li Xiaoheng appeared in time for the out of court settlement which dispelled this intention of Yao Shengan. In the end he obediently paid 150 million yuan in compensation and settlement.”
Father Shen instantly understood. Immediately, he then frowned and pondered: “So, this Tao Mu not only founded FlyNews.com, but also has talent in the financial field. Then do you think that Li Xiaoheng attacking the Sheng’an Group so vigorously in the stock market be something the two of them negotiated?”
Shen Chen used himself to judge others and analyzed: “For such an important matter, they must have discussed it. However, the two of them may not have expected that the Shen family would step in. The Sheng’an Group had been suspending trading the whole time before, and even if Li Xiaoheng wanted to do something there was no opportunity to operate. He could only launch an attack after the resumption of trading. As for the Shen family, we can only be said to have been implicated.”
“Really?” Father Shen shook his head slightly regretfully: “I really didn’t expect that the young people nowadays are all so capable.”
Shen Chen remained silent. People like them who work in industry management were naturally very well-off normally. But once they encounter a powerful trader who sniped them in the stock market, they could do nothing.
——Fortunately, their Shen family’s capital chain was functioning well, and major projects were also developing smoothly. They were not yet in a situation where they were as helpless as the Sheng’an Group.
Father Shen sighed, “One loses when careless”, and then asked Shen Chen: “How is Xiao Yu’s relationship with that Tao Mu? Can he ask Tao Mu for some lenience——”
“It should not work.” Shen Chen slowly shook his head, not all men in the world appreciated Shen Yu’s innocence. At least in Tao Mu’s eyes, the trouble Shen Yu brought him far exceeded the benefits that the Shen family could give him.
Father Shen paused for a moment, and then asked, “Is there a way for Xiao Yu to get acquainted with Li Xiaoheng?”
Even though Shen Chen had always respected his father, at this moment, he couldn’t help but feel a little annoyed: “Li Xiaoheng is Tao Mu’s business partner. The two have tens of billions of dollars in trading in the international oil futures market together. Father really feels that Xiao Yu’s charm can be compared to these tens of billions of capital?”
Father Shen was slapped in the face by his most important son, and he was a little embarrassed at the moment. He said sheepishly: “I mean, we can let Xiao Yu socialize with them. They are all around the same age, so they should have things to talk about.”
Shen Chen frowned: “Father, not everyone likes to go to great lengths for a beauty’s smile. The cooperation between Li Xiaoheng and Tao Mu involves tens of billions of dollars. Tao Mu’s dislike of Xiao Yu is even more widely known. If the Shen family really wants to show goodwill to Li Xiaoheng, don’t do things that will put Li Xiaoheng in a difficult spot. Believe me, between the tens of billions of dollars and various other options, no clear-headed man would choose the latter. “
Father Shen became more embarrassed and even a little bit angry from the embarrassment: “Then what do you say we do now? Li Xiaoheng attacked Sheng’an Group in the stock market, causing the stock price of Sheng’an Group to drop for several days. Moreover, the Sheng’an Group has just resumed trading, and within a short period of time, for at least three months, there is no possibility of trading suspension again. Are we going to watch the Sheng’an Group go bankrupt due to the stock price plummeting? What about the money our Shen family invested? How should we explain to the Shen Group’s shareholders?”
Shen Chen looked at father Shen in exasperation. He suspected his father might have been in contact with Shen Yu for too long a time, which was why his thinking had also become so inconceivable.
“The Sheng’an Group is a leading company in the catering industry in Shanghai. It has provided tens of thousands of jobs for Shanghai, and is also a large local taxpayer in Shanghai. Officials will not sit back and watch the Sheng’an Group go bankrupt. Moreover, the Sheng’an Group is far away from reaching the point of bankruptcy. The top priority now is to have the government help mediate. The reason why Tao Mu targeted the Sheng’an Group is entirely because of the old grievances between the Yao family and the Song family, but the Sheng’an Group is not the private property of the Yao family. Now that we know the demands of Tao Mu and the Song family, everyone can sit down and talk it out until a satisfactory result is reached.”
Hearing what his son said, father Shen instantly understood. Immediately, he said: “Okay. I’ll go to ask someone to come forward to mediate.”
Shen Chen nodded. Shen Chen very much trusted father Shen’s position and influence in Shanghai. After hesitating for a moment, Shen Chen said: “Father, you should stay with Xiao Yu as little as possible these days.”
Father Shen was startled when he heard the words, and immediately came to his senses: “Have I been affected?”
Shen Chen looked at his father with a complicated expression. The two of them had discovered one thing as early as when Shen Yu was very young. That was, as long as people stay with Shen Yu for a long period of time, they would become inexplicably weird——emotional fluctuations would become particularly large, their thinking patterns would become more straightforward and shallow, and even their style of behavior would become more extreme and blind——of course the most important change was that they would feel that Shen Yu was the loveliest person in the world, and he should be pampered and held in the palm of the hand. If someone dared to treat Shen Yu badly, they must crazily retaliate in revenge.
It was like having been bespelled.
Shen Chen discovered the signs when he was in junior high school. Before that, Shen Chen had been with his family day and night without realizing that there was anything wrong. Until the year when he entered junior high school, Shen Chen was sent abroad by father Shen to a field summer camp that was expensive but had a good training quality and allowed him to be able to make friends with many outstanding like-minded friends. After about a month or so, Shen Chen flew back from abroad, and when he watched the interaction mode between his family and Shen Yu, he suddenly felt something was wrong.
Later, he consciously stayed away from Shen Yu and even told father Shen about his suspicions. At that time, father Shen was still the chairman and executive CEO of the Shen Group. He traveled all year round to negotiate projects, or stayed in the company to work overtime so there were very few opportunities to be with family members. Hearing these weird words from Shen Chen, at first he felt that Shen Chen was a child with wild imagination. But later, when father Shen took the time to observe Shen Yu’s interaction with the people around him, he also faintly noticed something was wrong.
At the beginning, father Shen wanted to correct this situation. However, it didn’t take long for father Shen to discover that this characteristic of Shen Yu was actually beneficial to the Shen family from a certain angle. Especially those business competitors who had a bad relationship with the Shen Group, but because of contact with Shen Yu, these people gradually changed their views on the Shen Group, and even changed their sides to become partners of the Shen family. Even those competitors who had always been hostile towards the Shen family, because of contact with Shen Yu, became inexplicably simple-minded and even made frequent mistakes in the company’s operations. It was then easy for the Shen Group to surpass the other in land bidding or other aspects.
This effect was more immediate than painstakingly cultivating an heir. Father Shen had tasted the sweetness a few times, and immediately gave up his plan to transform Shen Yu. He even deliberately spoiled Shen Yu, keeping Shen Yu naive and ignorant of the world. Because he found that the more innocent and pure his youngest son was, the more lethal he was.
Only since then, father Shen had consciously put his eldest son by his side to personally raise him. This was in order to avoid the heir of the Shen family staying at home all year round and becoming affected by Shen Yu. To the outside, this was explained away under the guise of busy company affairs and regret for being unable to accompany his family often. Because the phenomenon in this circle of theirs was like this, the actions of Shen father and son pair did not attract the attention of others at all.
After so many years, father Shen had become accustomed to using Shen Yu to solve the competition or difficulties encountered by the Shen Group. Once he encountered an outsider who didn’t fall for Shen Yu, he would become inexplicably frustrated.
Father Shen smiled bitterly and shook his head. He wanted to spend a good New Year’s with his family. Now it seemed that it was better to go back to the company and work overtime.
As Shen Chen said, the Sheng’an Group was one of the largest taxpayers in Shanghai, and it had solved nearly 10,000 jobs for Shanghai and other first- and second-tier cities in China. The government certainly could not ignore the situation of the Sheng’an Group.
Although there was no conclusive evidence that Li Xiaoheng attacked the Sheng’an Group, Shanghai officials still tried to get Tao Mu and the people from the Sheng’an Group together for a meeting. In the eyes of the Shanghai officials, the reason why Xiaoheng Capital would inexplicably target a catering corporation that had nothing to do with the financial sector was to vent the anger for his business partner. As the saying goes, in order to untie the bell, the person who tied it is required. So long as Tao Mu was calmed down, Xiaoheng Capital would not be too excessive.
Tao Mu of course knew that a large company like Sheng’an Group which provided nearly 10,000 jobs and tens of millions of high taxes every year was absolutely impossible to “go completely bankrupt” as written in mary-sue novels. After all, this was not only the grievance between the two families, but also the issue of social stability.
He was willing to talk. So long as the Yao family were willing to pay the price.
Before the negotiation, Tao Mu also specially found Mr. Song and asked Mr. Song what he wanted. Song Daozhen probably never thought that the Song family would actually get their vengeance in this life. Suddenly, excited tears burst and fell down his old face. He didn’t ask for anything. He just wanted the return of the Song family’s ancestral recipe book: “That’s the Song family heirloom. The Song family has passed it down for several generations but it was lost in my father’s hands. Now it is my generation, yet it was still now returned. For so many years, I dare not go to worship my ancestors, for fear that my ancestors will ask me why I haven’t returned the recipe book…..”
“If we can get the recipe book back this time, let’s go sweep the grave on New Year’s Day. I will put the recipe book on my father’s grave and tell him that this recipe book has finally returned. It was his great-grandson who helped him get it back. Our Song family’s hatred has finally been avenged…..”
The old man Song rambled on, his only obsession being the Song family recipe book. Apart from this, there was nothing else. However, Tao Mu would not let the Yao family go so easily.
“Yao Shengan studied under the Song family. His craftsmanship was handed over by the Song family. Of course, there were some dishes that he invented by studying the recipes of the ancestors of the Song family. But anyway, without the Song family, there would be no Sheng’an Group. So I want the Yao family to give over half of their shares in the Sheng’an Group. It can be regarded as the technology investment by the Song family. This is no problem, right?”
At the negotiating table, Tao Mu directly threw down his bottom line: “The recipe book and half of the shares, and Yao Shengan himself must go to the old Mr. Song’s grave to confess his guilt and kowtow when we go sweep the grave on the first day of the New Year’s. If you agree then we reconcile. If you don’t agree then there is no other way.”
Although it was Li Xiaoheng’s work in attacking the Sheng’an Group in the stock market. But considering various factors, Tao Mu still didn’t let Li Xiaoheng appear at the negotiating table in Shanghai with him——he didn’t want Li Xiaoheng to be involved because of him. Many things should just remain tacitly understood. As long as there was no evidence, many things could only stay on the level of speculation forever.
Given the bad habit of certain departments in China, Tao Mu couldn’t guarantee that if Li Xiaoheng did appear at the Shanghai negotiating table, there wouldn’t be someone who would directly accuse Li Xiaoheng of “malicious manipulation of the stock market.”
So Tao Mu brought the ruthless Lawyer Zhou to the meeting alone, and his attitude was very tough——anyway, he was only 18 years old this year and was young and vigorous, an age where he should have sharp-edges.
“CEO Tao is too excessive.” Yao Shengan frowned when he heard Tao Mu’s request: “Do you know how many shares of Sheng’an Group the Yao family owns? The total is 40%. And you want half, making it 20%. Do you even know how much this 20% is worth, and you dare to have such a big appetite?”
Tao Mu raised his eyebrows, and asked quietly, “Do you know how much the lives of the Song family are worth?”
Yao Shengan became angry: “I have said that the tragedy of the Song family was caused by the times, and it has nothing to do with others. You say that the lives of the Song family are worth money. Then I will ask you, which life of the Song family was lost by my hands?”
Tao Mu tit-for-tat: “Mr. Yao was just an abandoned infant abandoned by the side of the road. Without the kindness of old Mr. Song, Mr. Yao would have starved to death by the side of the road and become a pile of unnamed bones. How could there still be a chance to betray the teacher and create the Sheng’an Group from scratch? Mr. Yao’s life was saved by old Mr. Song, Mr. Yao’s craftsmanship was taught by old Mr. Song. In the eyes of Mr. Yao, the few lives of the Song family are not worth a penny. I wonder how much Mr. Yao’s life and skill are worth then?”
Yao Shengan was speechless.
Accompanying them at the negotiating table were officials from the Shanghai City, as well as the Shen father and son pair and several other major shareholders of the Sheng’an Group.
Because Tao Mu only wanted half of the Yao family’s shares, it had nothing to do with anyone else. So other people were happy to just stand by the side and take a lofty stance.
“Everyone calms down. Let’s just talk about the matter. Don’t be angry.” The official representative of Shanghai City gave Yao Shengan a glance. He was entrusted by the Shen Group to mediate and hold this negotiation. The purpose was naturally to enable the Sheng’an Group to make a smooth transition from this crisis.
So he didn’t care who owned the shares of the Sheng’an Group. He only needed to ensure that the Sheng’an Group could pass through this hurdle smoothly, and then open business again.
Several major shareholders of the Sheng’an Group felt the gaze of the official representative of Shanghai City, and they all spoke: “Lao Yao. It’s not that I am criticizing you. The things you did to the Song family were really not moral. No matter what, you were the big apprentice personally taught by old Mr. Song. There is an old saying in China that says that a teacher for a day means a father for life. Then you are also considered the adopted son of the Song family. The Song family’s kindness in nurturing you and imparting upon you your cooking skills must be acknowledged. Moreover, you even took the ancestral recipe book of the Song family for so many years, and harmed the Song family so miserably. For sentiment and reason, your Yao family should take out half of the shares to compensate the Song family.”
Other shareholders also echoed: “What’s more, with the current situation of the Sheng’an Group, half of your Yao family’s shares may really be worthless. If you really disagree, Mr. Tao will be angered and our negotiation will collapse. At that time, the Sheng’an Group might really go bankrupt.”
“Chairman Shen and CEO Shen, what do you think about this matter? The Shen Group is now a major shareholder of the Sheng’an Group! Your suggestions are still very important.” Another person threw the ball to the silent Shen father and son pair.
The Shen father and son pair intend to show goodwill towards Tao Mu, but they also didn’t want to be too obvious, after all the Shen family was still family friends with the Yao family in public.
Father Shen pondered for a moment, and slowly said, “Even an upright official finds it hard to settle a family quarrel. Mr. Tao just wants half of the Yao family’s shares. We as outsiders, no matter what we say, will be suspected of easily talking on the sidelines so I won’t say anything. At most, the funds invested by the Shen Group in the Sheng’an Group will just be in vain.”
As soon as these words came out, the others were fine, but several other shareholders of the Sheng’an Group felt their hearts squeeze severely. Their desire to persuade Yao Shengan became even more urgent——they didn’t want their own money to be spent in vain.
Yao Shengan’s facial muscles twitched fiercely, and he naturally knew the viciousness hidden in father Shen’s words.
It was to put their Yao family on the fire and roast them!
Truly possessing a wolf ambition!
However, the matter being as it was, even if Yao Shengan struggled in vain, he was helpless. In the end, Yao Shengan had to agree to Tao Mu’s request under the painstaking persuasion of everyone. The recipe book and half of the shares of the Sheng’an Group held by the Yao family, 20%, were handed over to Tao Mu.
Long before Tao Mu came to Shanghai, Mr. Song violently stated that their Song family would never take a cent from the Yao family. The lives of their Song family were definitely not something that could be bought with this money. He would never forgive Yao Shengan in his life. Nor would he want shares of the Sheng’an Group.
So after discussing with the old man, Tao Mu decided to divide the 20% of the shares into two parts, of which 10% was given to the families of the catering businesses that had gone bankrupt because of Yao Sheng’an and Sheng’an Group——these people in the previous life accepted the compensation from the Sheng’an Group and did not pursue the past grievances. Of course, there was likely a part that came from the mindset that businessmen valued profits, but some of the victims were indeed in terrible conditions, and even had problems maintaining their daily living.
Tao Mu didn’t want his presence to butterfly away this group of people’s opportunity for a change of luck. After two lifetimes of experience, Tao Mu knew better than anyone that the opportunities that money could bring to people were far more than one’s steady and conventional efforts.
Since the damage was irreversible, then giving money to make up for the victim’s suffering, while vulgar, was also the most practical and effective means of compensation.
As for the other 10%, Tao Mu decided to set up a charity fund in the name of Mr. Song, or that uncle of his who died young. It was a charity dedicated to donating to children in poor and remote areas to receive education and health benefits, as well as to support widows and elderly who were alone and had no support.
Mr. Song stayed silent for a long time, and finally agreed to Tao Mu’s suggestion. He named this charity fund “Song Huai Fund”. It was neither his name nor the name of his son. It was the name of the ancestor of the Song family, who was also an abandoned baby at the time. He was adopted by kind people who taught him his craftsmanship. Later, he founded Song Ji from scratch.
However, unlike Yao Shengan, Song Huai remembered his orphan’s life experience, and was grateful to the teacher who picked him up for adoption. Under these circumstances, after establishing Song Ji, he wrote down the Song family teachings that decreed that in every generation, so long as the Song family had the means, must adopt an orphan or abandoned infant and teach them skills that could support their livelihood.
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So old Mr. Song adopted Yao Shengan, and Mr. Song adopted Tao Mu…..Even if the world was difficult and people’s minds were unpredictable, some people always remember the truth that one must “maintain goodness when you are poor, and share with others when you are rich.”
They would not refuse to lend a helping hand because of family difficulties, nor would they no longer believe in the goodness of people after being hurt.
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