Thanks to Bismarck, the war, the businessmen from all over the world, and the capital pursuing profit, 5,000 tons of wheat and rice, 300 tons of corns, and tens of tons of spice and sugar had been sold out.
It was a shame that the Chicago Futures Exchange had just been established in 1885, and its business hadn't extended to Germany. Otherwise, Huang Xuan would have celebrated when the 2,500 tons of wheat and the 2,500 tons of rice were sold out.
According to the statistics of the DEFRA, modern agriculture produced only eight tons of wheat on one hectare of land. 5,000 tons would be equivalent to the productivity of 600 hectares of land. However, this didn't mean much to Huang Xuan. Since he had 120 thousand hectares of land, 5,000 tons was just a piece of cake.
Holding the 54,000 Talers, Huang Xuan felt that he had nowhere to spend them. If he had been in Paris or Hamburg, he would have been able to make ten times more profit. But now, he was in Rheinland-Pfalz, the remotest forest in Germany, where there were only lumber and farm products. He had only two days left. In a time without planes, the most convenient transportation was the railroad. However, the railway in Germany was special.
Maybe it was because of the long-time separation and war, the German railroads were constructed according to the cities. In other words, one usually had to transfer if he wanted to go to place C from place A via place B. It could be imagined how much time it would take to transfer at such an ineffective time. The people hoping the situation to be a little comfortable would get disappointed because the Germans weren't allowed to enter in France.
Basically, the only material Huang Xuan could bring home was lumber.
"If only we could define the place and the time." Huang Xuan was still holding on to it.
"According to the naive quantum theory , we can't define the time and the place at the same time," Rolin had to remind him again.
"I know." Huang Xuan exhaled deeply and walked toward another chamber of commerce.
Although there were no masterpieces of great artists to buy, the quality of the lumber in Pfalz was pretty good if one's demand wasn't too high. Thanks again to Hartig who had conducted the afforestation campaign on a great scale when he had been the director of the forestry bureau. The Europeans were full of hopes and eagerness to conquer everything in the 19th century. They thought they had approached the essence of the world, perhaps even God. They were no longer content with possessing only farmland but also wished to make the forests grown according to their own needs.
Actually, in the early years of the afforestation campaign, the annual growth volume of these planted forests had increased steadily, but at the beginning of the 20th century, the forests had started to suffer from pests and diseases, and the strong wind had destroyed hectares of forests. For planted forests, the Germans had cut down and sold a lot of mature lumber that were at least tens of years old, among which, beech and oak took up the most.
When the owners of the forest farms saw Huang Xuan take out plenty of cash to buy the lumber, they were elated. It was not only because Huang Xuan didn't need them to transport it but also because he paid in cash. The chambers of commerce here usually purchased on credit. Huang Xuan wouldn't have got the cash if he hadn't persisted or sold the grains at a price lower than the market. Most of the forests in Germany were private. As long as the owners paid taxes to the government every year, they could dispose of the forests at will. In this case, Huang Xuan (actually Rolin) could choose whatever kind of lumber he liked and its quality.
Rolin didn't let Huang Xuan go home until he had spent two days selecting the lumber and finally collected 60,000 m³ of it. Huang Xuan fell asleep soon.
In the morning, when the sun rose, the whole city of Sao Paulo turned the color of the sun.
Li Qing knocked lightly at the door and said, "Huang Xuan, there is a Mr. Aubrey White for you. He said that he knew you through Mr. Yu Liye."
"Oh," Huang Xuan responded and struggled to get up with untidy hair.
Aubrey White was an American from New England. He was a clean-shaven Catholic wearing a neat suit. Huang Xuan guessed that he was in his forties. He had brought an interpreter, a young Chinese, whom Huang Xuan guessed hadn't been able to go back to China.
Huang Xuan washed simply and put on a T-shirt contrasting sharply with Aubrey's suit. The latter showed the least care about it and greeted Huang Xuan as he held out his right hand.
"Mr. Huang, I am Aubrey White with Citigroup Global Markets. I have heard a lot about you from Mr. Yu Liye and hope to do business with you."
"Would you like some tea or coffee?" Huang Xuan shook hands with Aubrey and his interpreter. Then he sat down and said, "What business?"
"Coffee, please," Aubrey said in a low voice to Li Qing. Then he turned his head and said to Huang Xuan, "I think you must have heard that our company is specialized in property management. We are hoping to take care of your property."
Huang Xuan touched his nose and smiled. "Have you ever talked with my parents? My property still belongs to my guardians."
"I mean your personal property."
Huang Xuan squinted. It seemed Aubrey was a typical American manager that first took care of the property of a young clan member, developed a good personal relation with their clients, and then became the manager of the entire clan when the young member inherited a legacy or started to manage the clan. It was common in the American banking and financial service industry. But the Europeans had been an excellent student in recent years.
Thinking this, a prank came to Huang Xuan's mind.
"Do you know the total value of my personal property, Mr. White?"
"Two million dollars in cash, 24% of the shares of Xinye Company, and an electrolytic aluminum factory," Aubrey answered the question easily. Obviously, he had done some investigation before he had come.
However, this was the material one month ago. He had just spent all the cash and got 300 million dollars from a Japanese. He didn't even need to pay the tax. Although it was not decent, it still could be counted as his personal property.
Seeing Huang Xuan go silent, Aubrey continued, "Although Salomon Smith Barney has been merged into Citigroup, our company still excels at property management and has richer experience in it. We can guarantee you that your property will increase by 6% in the next year. Normally, the property we manage usually increase by 10%. Furthermore, we are the best capital operating company in the world, which provides considerate and sound service for our customer including consultation, restructuring and acquisition and merger."
The interpreter was good, but Rolin was better. Huang Xuan kept silent. He hadn't been willing to let others take care of his property because Rolin possessed the basic financial knowledge, and the amounts of money he made and spent were huge. However, Aubrey's last sentence interested him. He did need a specialized institution to operate his property since Rolin was too busy.
Huang Xuan tapped at the table with his middle finger and said, "I know Salomon Smith Barney. Your information is a little outdated."
Aubrey wasn't displeased to hear the interpretation. He nodded and waited for Huang Xuan to continue.
"I want to purchase a storing company, the business of which should cover Sao Paulo and the Port of Santos, the equipment must be sound and wonderful. The price is lower than 20 million dollars. I will consider your proposal if your company can complete this purchase."
Huang Xuan sounded just like his mom. Aubrey nodded and said, "No problem. I will submit the acquisition outline within three days."
"I look forward to your good news." Huang Xuan stood up and shook Aubrey's hand.