“Haha, I also thought that Viscount Ajstain had made her granddaughter’s education straight, so I never thought that such words would come out of the mouth of a girl who had just come of age.”
“Is that so?”
I pretended not to know and shuddered at him. Well, even if it was just me, I gave the answer lightly at first, but as I did numerous transactions, I naturally put more weight on it and came to be able to say it. Thanks to this, I was rarely ignored when signing contracts, but I was often told that I was like an old person.
“Well, if it’s his granddaughter, of course. The story is leaking. Now, shall we listen to the story first?”
“Yes. To get straight to the point, I want to invest in the Safeldrick family’s military industry. To be precise, I want to jointly promote the business.”
The Duke tilted his body slightly forward with the same look in his eyes.
“The munitions industry has been exclusively handled by the Safeldrick family for 200 years. We oversee everything necessary for the military. The family that participates in this business must have a connection with the military, like Ian sitting in front of them.”
I nodded my head slowly as I had expected this far.
“I’m definitely aware of that part. Besides, if the industry related to the military, which is the core of national defense, is linked with a single nobleman, there is a risk of corruption in national defense. I also know that.”
“If you know that well, can you explain why I have to receive investment from the Ajstain family and jointly promote the business?”
“Simple, because we need to simplify.”
I lifted my body lightly and looked at Ian. He took out the documents I had asked for in advance and put them on the desk. Information was unavailable, so I needed his help. Duke Safeldrick reached out and picked up the papers. He rolled his eyes and glanced at me over the papers.
“The families involved in the military industry over the last 60 years and the quantity of goods they have delivered.”
“I know. I have eyes, so I know when I see it. But why are you holding out this document?”
“If you look at the simple data, the scale is considerable. Even if you roughly calculate, only gold coins consumed by the army in a year amount to 70% of the empire’s budget. 70,000, 70% of the total of 160,000 gold coins. This is an absurd amount.”
The expression on his face as he set the paper down on the table looked displeased. It was worth it. It was Ian and Duke Safeldrick who made the final decision regarding the military industry. Considering that Ian had inherited the dukeship less than ten years ago, most of the list in this document was the final decision made by the Duke of Safeldrick. In other words, what I just said was tantamount to blatantly expressing doubts about Duke Safeldrick’s decision. Even so, the Duke said politely.
“Can you explain the meaning of that word?”
I had to keep my head straight from here. A single word could shake things related to honor, trust, or family prestige that cannot be converted into money. Also, apart from contracts, you can make enemies if you don’t care. So I opened his mouth, picking out the words as best I could.
“You can find out by checking the number of stores, guilds, and stores where the participating families are doing business.”
“Don’t you think that’s too much dispersion?”
The first thing that caught my eye the moment I received the report prepared in advance by Ian was that there were too many participating organizations compared to the budget consumed.
“Besides, some places receive more than 1,000 gold coins a year on average, but deliver fewer items than places that receive less than half of that amount. If so, is the type of item different? No, it’s the same food. Then, is the quality different? That’s not the case either. As a result of checking myself, there wasn’t that big of a difference.”
I looked into Ian once. He silently nodded his head, as if agreeing with my words. Duke Safeldrick glanced at Ian and me, then twitched his chin again.
“That said, I think some families are getting the favor, through overspreading and unfair pricing.”
“I see. So?”
“I think this part can be corrected. You can start with groceries and increase clothing, armor, and welfare for your soldiers. In other words, the budget can be drastically reduced while increasing the number of standing troops.”
It was an ideal story. Increase the standing army while reducing the budget. However, it was not necessarily impossible to reorganize an industry that had grown excessively.
“It sounds pretty plausible. But it seems unlikely.”
“This is a reform that can succeed unconditionally if the Ajstain family participates in the business.”
Duke Safeldrick made a dumbfounded expression at my bold answer, then slammed him on the knee and furrowed his eyebrows with a ferocious face.
“Are you kidding me right now? Lawrence, according to you, some families are monopolizing the benefits and making excessive profits. But this time, are you asking me to join your family while reorganizing the military industry? Doesn’t that mean you’re going to do it?”
The title of iron-blooded chancellor, with a sharp voice and no blood or tears, was desperately approaching. Even so, he was a person who could analyze events and develop logical thoughts. If you make an enemy, he’s a pretty scary person. But since I couldn’t back down right away, I answered with a voice full of confidence while facing bloody eyes.
“Yes. I will monopolize part of the inefficient process that the Ajstain family has been uselessly dispersed.”
“Ha… now that’s what you mean…”
“Instead, I’ll take the prerequisites based on scoring.”
The Duke’s eyes went up. This part is the most important, so I brought out the words more carefully than any other remarks.
“As for the business that the Ajstain family exclusively takes over, we will take 10% of the total profits.”
10% of total revenue. It was a very insignificant number that could not be regarded as an investment profit at all. It was a statement that if he earned 100,000 gold coins, he would only take 10,000 gold coins. If the investment to earn 100,000 gold coins is 70% of the profit, or about 70,000 gold coins, it was a contract in which the investor would lose money. Usually, in all businesses, the investment accounted for about 70% of the profits. So taking 10% was literally the same as doing business at a loss. This was absurd, so it was no wonder that Duke Safeldrick was surprised. Ordinary people would welcome this proposal with open arms, but he was a cautious man. The Duke put his index and middle fingers to his lower lip and looked at me silently. His gaze was hot and sharp, like a sword just pulled out of a furnace. It seemed that if I avoided his eyes, I would be cut. The anticipation in his eyes showed that he was no mere daughter-lover-law. He was a man who had stood firm as the head of the Safeldrick family for nearly 30 years. No matter how overwhelming the position or title one possessed, it was bound to be taken away if the person who wielded that weapon was clumsy. Given that, it was clear that he was not to be taken lightly.
The sound of his breathing and his narrowed eyes spoke for his state of mind. Yeah, that would be complicated. He was probably wondering what I’m up to. I doubt he was trying to scam me. It was one of two things that offered too good conditions. I should have reevaluated the Duke if I hadn’t suspected myself of being an idiot inexperienced in contracts, or a fraud, or suddenly appearing and offering absurd terms. However, he was cautious and pondered for a long time. After a long wait, his mouth opened.
“The condition you put forward is the entire Ajstain family’s. But the Duke isn’t a businessman.” he laughed
“No. My main job is to go into the palace over there and watch the back of the heads of those guys who roll their pens and spin their hair.”
I laughed too. The Duke seemed to understand what I was talking about. It wasn’t normal either.
“To put it simply, the Ajstain family gives advice on the operation of the military industry, and in return, you can see that they receive 10% of the revenue that will be generated from reduced costs.”
“You said you would do business with other people’s money and earn money according to the profit.”
“If you run a business with other people’s money, the risks associated with it are infinitely close to zero. Besides, there must be many ways to create profits by taking out unnecessary parts as you do business with an overflowing budget, right?”
Hello there! This is RJR. Thank you very much for reading.
Next post will be released on May, 29.
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