Chapter 307: Are You Hungry
Xu Tingsheng was mainly communicating regarding the matter of ‘Are You Hungry’ everyday.
Most people felt ‘Are You Hungry’ to be quite a strange thing at least right at the start of its implementation. In this day and age, it was still not commonly believed that even something minor like ‘takeaway’ would also require an online platform.
“There’s an online company that started out as an intermediary for education, recruitment and the renting and selling of houses etcetera but eventually couldn’t hold out like that. They could only turn to delivering takeaway part-time as a result. I hear that even their beautiful lady boss has to deliver takeawayl How very tragic indeed.”
“This strange thing is Hucheng Tongcheng’s counterattack? Who suffered a concussion and thought of it?”
“The dumbest ever move of the chaotic ‘Three Kingdoms’ set-up! Likely to accelerate their own deterioration...though they already couldn’t hold on the first place. Entrepreneurs are always just so weak and helpless in the face of capital.”
On the first day, there were twenty thousand orders throughout the fifty cities, mainly amongst student consumers. Not considering their earlier investments, Hucheng had earned around twenty to fifty cents from each of these orders.
Calculating it like this, their daily income was less than 5000 yuan. Just in terms of orders alone, it was insufficient to sustain their business model.
On the second day, the data was basically around the same as on the first day.
Therefore, the experts were rolling on the floor laughing.
Their business competitors were rolling on the floor laughing.
The netizens still did not know if they should laugh or not, because most of them had only just heard about this and had still yet to really understand the situation.
The experts analysed it from various angles, such as the unproven new model not being accepted and making calls being faster and more convenient than using the internet etcetera. The final verdict was actually a sort of rejection. Are You Hungry was doomed to failure. Even if it did ultimately manage to survive, it would only be able to go on operating in an awkward state.
Those business competitors were much more direct as they asked: Have your school canteens all closed down? Are families all not cooking anymore? And even if they do really call takeaway, are there really any homes that don’t have phones?...
“Only fools would try to make a business out of this.”
The conclusion that Hucheng’s counterattack was sorely lacking. Hucheng was grasping at straws...Hucheng might as well switch to delivering takeaway instead.
Some people who had not known of Hucheng beforehand actually began calling it: Hucheng delivery.
Besides the experts, their opponents and the general public, the employees of Hucheng were actually feeling rather pessimistic themselves, much of their joy from the previous grand victory for their training institute in Shenghai having been diminished as a result. Fortunately, with good news ultimately having preceded this, the company was not destabilised by this turn of events.
“Our boss hasn’t even come out and said anything. Really…” Someone secretly complained.
“He has always been like this. Still, he’s never lost before,” A more experienced employee replied, despite not feeling all that confident himself.
“This loss wouldn’t simply be a matter of straining our tendons!” Someone said worriedly.
Still, virtually everyone had actually overlooked something, which was that in truth, with so many forums and such discussing ‘Are You Hungry’, whether their opinions were positive or negative, supportive or mocking, most of them would take a look at Hucheng Tongcheng’s main website out of curiosity as a result.
As the sole decision maker who had proposed the project himself, Xu Tingsheng could not help but sweat nervously after the data for the first day had been consolidated.
Implementing Are You Hungry before the age of smartphones, relying completely on computers instead, Xu Tingsheng had already mentally pictured the worst case scenario...yet, never would he have thought that it would be tragic to this extent!
“If I knew engineering, I’d be off making smartphones. Totally useless, are Humanities students.”
The next day, after Lu Zhixin had sent over the relevant data and the reactions from the various parties, Xu Tingsheng told her to ask the IT department to check the number of pageviews their site had garnered over the past few days.
Lu Zhixin soon returned with the statistics. It had increased tenfold on the first day. It had been even greater on the second day as it had been twenty times how it had been originally.
Xu Tingsheng was reassured by this as he smiled, “That’s why I said-no worries.”
Lu Zhixin said, “Yes, I believe you. I’ll help you to watch over things here.”
“I’ll be troubling you,” Xu Tingsheng replied as always.
On the third day, the number of orders had increased to fifty thousand. While their actual income from this was still just a bit over ten thousand yuan, Lu Zhixin was clearly very excited and joyful when she reported this to Xu Tingsheng.
“It will still rise,” Xu Tingsheng could finally set his heart at ease on seeing this trend as he smiled, “They really underestimate the number of NEETs and their laziness. Also, people are generally unable to stop once they have been lazy the first time. For those who hold vegetable knives everyday, if they go three days without holding one, it would be very difficult to pick one back up again. Unless they’re doing so to try to make their boyfriend or girlfriend happy.”
“Also, in today’s data, while the number of orders from university students has increased, their proportion has dropped. White collar workers from the city have begun entering too,” Lu Zhixin elaborated.
Hearing Lu Zhixin’s words, Xu Tingsheng thought back on the data of the biggest takeaway apps in his previous life. White-collar workers had formed around sixty percent of consumers.
He considered this for a bit before saying, “Actually, they’re seriously busy and tired. Reaching home everyday, it’s hard for them to move even a finger. They really tire of having to cook. Also, basically all of them have computers and some money. In the long term, they can be considered our mainstay. Also, if they register, it’ll be greatly beneficial for the growth of our other services.”
“Then, how about a promotion targeted against this group of consumers?” Lu Zhixin asked.
“Nah. We’re one of a kind now. Our very existence itself is a promotion,” Xu Tingsheng said, “The crucial thing now is those people outside. Emphasise definitively to them that we want exclusive contracts and try everything you can to get exclusive contracts signed. People will soon discover that the winds have changed and try to follow us into this, I reckon.”
Lu Zhixin smiled, “You can rest assured on this, really. Actually, things have slowly progressed to the point that we don’t really have to take the initiative. The shops will come to look for us on their own, being very hearty and straightforward in agreeing to our conditions too.”
“Huh, for real? ...That’s good then.”
Hanging up, Xu Tingsheng felt rather emotional. In his previous life, he had seen ‘Are You Hungry’ gaining a large amount of copycats right after having seen some results. In the end, with the various companies all competing and making losses with promotions, smashing their opponents with money, the battlefront had truly been brutal indeed.
Exclusive contracts? Hah, no way.
‘Are You Hungry’ had managed to avoid such a problem, at least in the initial stages.
Also, Xu Tingsheng had shamelessly cheated away truckloads of exclusive contracts.
This is the benefit of grasping future trends. If your mind is sufficiently ahead of the rest, others won’t even be in time to keep up. While ‘Are You Hungry’ was not in an ideal flourishing state due to the current lack of smartphones, it correspondingly faced much less competition too.
On his fourth consecutive day at the beach, Xu Tingsheng was a little out of sorts as he spent the afternoon there. As night came, he suddenly didn’t feel like going there anymore. He felt like going somewhere else, perhaps visit a bar or something.
This showed that his desire to go relax alone somewhere had basically already been satisfied.
People do need a solitary, peaceful environment sometimes. Still, few people indeed are truly able to remain in such a state for so long.
Xu Tingsheng knew that it was high time he returned.
Nice housed France’s third largest Cote d’Azur International Airport from which he could return directly to Shenghai.
When booking a plane ticket, Xu Tingsheng coincidentally spied flight information for New York. He hesitated for a moment but still chose to buy a ticket for Shenghai in the end. While he had originally intended to satisfy Apple’s desire of running together in Central Park as he had once promised her, this could only be left for next time…
On the fourth day, the statistics for ‘Are You Hungry’ frenziedly surged to 150000 orders, their daily income nearing fifty thousand yuan. Even if the data itself wasn’t all that terrifying, it was the momentum that was scariest, also being the most convincing.
From the looks of it, this momentum would not be slowing anytime soon.
Hucheng’s employees were in high spirits, “I’ll never dare to doubt Boss again.” If not for their unreliable boss being nowhere to be found yet again, they would probably have gone into his office and lifted him up, throwing him to the skies in joy.
“Our future prospects are endless...hahahaha.”
“Boss once said that he’s going to take us to ring the bell at Nazdaq.”
“To be honest, I felt rather stifled before, thinking about how I was working for a child...I’m convinced now.”
All the mocking jabs and laughter were inevitably dispelled in the outside world.
People were already beginning to discuss how innovative and daring this was, how the era of an Internet-based economy was fast approaching…
More and more people registered on the website, adopting this ‘bad’ habit. More and more shops successively took the initiative to join in this venture for fear that they might miss out.
“Hucheng has found a new source of revenue, and it’s endless. Hucheng has already grasped the advantage in this chaotic battle of the ‘Three Kingdoms’.”
“I think they’ve basically secured their victory already, and not just because they’ve a source of income. More importantly, Hucheng has also gathered even more consumers. Really, passivity and all is well, but when that passivity ultimately switches to activity, you know you’re done for.”
“The other two companies were saying so many big words earlier. Look at them now! They’ve lost both face and the ability to compete all at once.”
“What if they’re copied again? Wasn’t their website copied in the first place? Who knows how Hucheng might be able to prevent it this time.”
“If they can make it through this, Hucheng’s worth will definitely skyrocket...doubling would also not be impossible. Despite competition appearing, its consumer base has instead increased as a result.”
“Why is it that we’ve never heard anything about Hucheng’s plans to get listed? It also seems like there’s been no activity with their shares at all internally.”
“ETFs aren’t worthy in their eyes?”
“Maybe even A-stocks are worth nothing to them, and they’re just waiting to get listed on Nasdaq in the future…”
Amidst the heated discussion of the netizens, the experts simply followed their usual style as those who had commented earlier remained silent, pretending that this had nothing to do with them at all.
Those who had not commented previously leapt out in a timely manner, righteously arguing on how they had always thought this new project very likely to succeed. Then, they analysed this from different perspectives and aspects...they had always been most proficient in overturning their previous conclusions.
The relevant contenders could not remain silent, especially considering such a situation.
Youxin Tongcheng cared not about copying at all as they swiftly came out and said: Youxin Tongcheng will be entering the takeaway industry in the near future. Also, we have abundant funds and a more professional team...we will definitely perform even better than Hucheng here.
You need only await.
Jinxiong Corporation included, the real estate companies were preparing to offer the Black Horse Club and Hucheng better conditions. They even felt that they should look for a chance and sit down for a meal with a few of them, Xu Tingsheng included, chatting with them for a bit.
Ding Sen opposed this twice. Still, not only did everyone ignore him, he was even rebuked badly by his father.
At home, Ding Sen smashed a cup on the floor, next taking out his phone and dialling Dongzi’s number, “You two, begin preparations. As soon as I receive news that he’s back, come back to Yanzhou to handle the deed. This time...I won’t rest till he’s dead.”
Back in Nice, Xu Tingsheng was currently in the midst of packing his luggage.
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