In this awkward world, Sun Yutian is an alternative existence.
In 2002, Sun Yutian created the Confucius Old Book Network (hereinafter referred to as Kong.com). At that time, Taobao and Jingdong Online Mall had not been created. Since then, Kongnet has maintained a growth rate of 30% per year. The number of transactions per day exceeds 40,000, and the annual transaction volume reaches 500 million yuan, becoming the world’s largest Chinese old book trading platform.
However, inconsistent with the rapid development of the business, Sun Yutian, who has been in business for 15 years, does not have a set of his own house. There is no independent office. The company does not recruit and promote operators, and does not integrate into any Internet. Circles, basically do not participate in commercial activities, it is difficult to search for a few of his news &mdash on Baidu; — he may be the most independent of thousands of Internet entrepreneurs.
Our interview was conducted in a narrow room. In front of a small round table, Sun Yutian said lightly about his dream of promoting Chinese traditional culture and his understanding of the Internet.
As Sun Yutian said, this is not a business story.
Questions and Answers
On November 27, 2015, Sun Yutian sent the first WeChat circle of friends:
In front of the gray-walled library Gao Xiaosong, Yu Dan and Zhang Dachun and other cultural circles are lined up in a row, Sun Yutian wearing a down jacket, standing on the far left.
On this day, the library opened.
The corner of the library
In 15 years, Sun Yutian met many collectors and friends. In order not to bury their vast collection of books, in order to turn the rigid book into a vivid cultural value, several collectors and the famous Chinese musician Gao Xiaosong hit it off and established a large private public welfare library —— Gao Xiaosong served as curator.
The library, covering an area of more than 3,000 square meters, contains nearly a million old books, such as celebrity manuscripts, late Qing Dynasty journals, and Ming and Qing Dynasties. The collections are rich in content and have immeasurable document value. You can buy one or two suites in the Imperial City with a set of old treasures.
Subsequently, the library was a hit with the filming of “Xiao Shuo” and “Xiao Shuo Qi Tan”. The towering black bookshelf, rich ancient books, and the simple reading atmosphere make many Wenqing and The researchers came here. Despite the remote location and inconvenient transportation, it still welcomes 70,000 readers in one year.
Looking at the endless stream of readers, Sun Yutian was happy, but the people around him were anxious for him.
The volume of ancient books in the library is huge, which means that the restoration project is huge. Sun Yutian deliberately recruited ancient books and library students from Beijing to carry out restoration work, 30% of which belong to graduate students and above, high labor costs, plus water and electricity and rent, the library has no income every year. The net loss is about 3 million yuan.
Friends know that Sun Yutian is very “slamming.” In the 5 years of starting a business, the company did not recruit any employees. The office was previously housed in a residential building. Nowadays, it is also chosen to be in a remote area outside Beijing’s Fifth Ring Road, but it is too willing to invest so much in the library, which surprised them a bit.
“ Qian Zhongshu’s letters received for so many years, there are more than a dozen sacks. In Yang Lan’s later years, the babysitters were all torn off and thrown into the garbage dump, so that the smashed smashed Thousands of pieces have been pieced together in the pieces, which is of great value to the study of Qian Zhongshu. Sun Yutian said excitedly.
As a trading platform for old books, Kongnet has gathered a large number of ancient books, and Sun Yutian has also made a lot of collectors with rich collections, and has gained popularity and influence in the old book trading circle. He hopes that in his lifetime, he will collect the rare books scattered by the people, form the essence of Chinese ancient culture, and fill the gap in ancient culture research as much as possible.
& ldquo; In the future, everyone wants to study Chinese culture, where to find books? Sun Yutian throws questions to reporters, but it seems that this is more like an answer.
Essays, big wealth
This answer, Sun Yutian explored for 15 years.
Compared with Internet elites such as Li Yanhong and Zhang Chaoyang, Sun Yutian’s entrepreneurship is very grassroots. He was born in Shanxi University of Finance and Economics. The original idea of starting a business was to create a website to help seniors sell old books to freshmen through the Internet. Prior to this, the old books of graduates were traded through street vendors.
It is conceivable that the traffic on this campus website is very low, which makes Sun Yutian feel frustrated and turn his attention to the social group.
At that time, many old books happened to be in the hands of the ruined people. They didn’t have the channels to sell books, and they didn’t even know who to sell them. The real collectors and intellectuals did not have the purchase channels of old books. There is a serious information asymmetry between the two sides.
Old book trading market
Sun Yutian immediately It is decided that Kongnet only serves as a C2C user platform, allowing people in need to trade independently. Based on the user’s needs to develop the website framework and positioning, he unconsciously practiced the Internet’s user thinking and used it throughout the website operation process.
At that time, China’s C2C e-commerce began to sprout. International giant eBay just entered China through the acquisition of eBay. Alibaba, which focuses on B2B, will start its Taobao business only one year later.
Sun Yutian did not know that he had inadvertently entered a blue ocean in a vertical field. In the early days, he was like a headlessFly, can’t find direction. Fortunately, I met some like-minded friends on the Internet. He calls his friends every day to talk about the old book market and the needs of users, usually lasting more than an hour. Gradually, Sun Yutian figured out the general situation of the old book trading market.
The proportion of reprinted books in the annual book distribution is large, which means that the book that was just bought today may become an old book on the second day, but it can be circulated repeatedly. The old book market is divided into four categories: rare books with high value of collections, out-of-print old books that are no longer published by publishers, special books with higher stocks, and second-hand books.
What caused Sun Yutian to pay attention is that with the improvement of economic level and cultural demand, people have a strong interest in the collection and research of ancient culture books, and the rare books of ancient books have risen in the market. However, the value of antique calligraphy and painting, the rare books of ancient books is difficult to determine, the price definition is vague, and the way of open auction is popular.
So, Sun Yutian began to redesign the website, introducing the online auction trading area, which is divided into two parts: “Rare Auction” and “Popular Auction”, which is convenient for the majority of book friends to auction rare books or higher value. The old books, and the auction information are all publicized, realizing the transparency of the transaction, and introducing an evaluation mechanism to achieve supervision transactions.
The first method of introducing auction means, the hole network spread in the circle. More and more small bookstores have entered the network, and many collectors and scholars have heard of Taobao. Ancient books accounted for 20-40% of the platform, nearly one million books could not be bought in other channels, and the number of users of Kongnet increased.
After 15 years of development, there are 12,877 large bookstores on the Kongnet platform, 42,049 private book stalls and 88,788,839 books. The number of transactions per day exceeds 40,000, and the annual transaction volume reaches 500 million yuan. The country’s largest old book trading platform.
Collectors said that before buying old books, they went to Panjiayuan. Now they will buy old books and search for them on the hole network. It has become an irreplaceable trading channel and even the pricing standard for old book transactions in the country.
Internet world lone ranger
The Internet is a fast-fishing world of fast fish, companies frantically financing, staking, and then continue to expand, continue to expand, valuation geometric multiple growth, office The office building that moved into the Internet center, the founders frequently appeared in various conference forums and media, expanding to create personal IP, and the company is expanding at a high speed.
Of course, the capital side is also actively involved in this capital movement. The nature of bloodthirsty allows them to spread the net, force the project to expand rapidly, create beautiful business data, and then go out of price and turn to the next prey. . The profit-seeking nature of capital has accelerated the speed of the Internet.
As the earliest C2C project, the nation’s largest old book trading platform, Jingdong, Dangdang and Sequoia, have expressed their favor. Regardless of how the capital lobbied, Sun Yutian never dared to let go.
Looking at the Internet’s intensive capital operation and rapid development, Sun Yutian reveals envy. However, the nature of capital gains makes him worry that once the capital is introduced, the company will be kidnapped by the operating data and lose the original intention of the company. The bleakness of Vanke and Jumeiyou is the lack of physical strength and rapid expansion.
He has repeatedly mentioned to employees that capital profit and entrepreneurial intentions are often difficult to balance, and ideal entrepreneurs are afraid to introduce capital.
Looking back at Sun Yutian’s experience, he was born in engineering, but he has a special liking for literature. He tried to write an article, and he has a dream of editing the article. The establishment of the hole network is also deeply rooted in the heart. A recognition of culture. In the first five years, the salary of the website was subsidized by wages. However, as a migrant worker in North China, the low wages were unsustainable, and he returned to his hometown in Shanxi to open a computer training school to back up the website.
The user was charged any fees until the end of 2006, the number of platform users soared, and the operating costs increased. Sun Yutian only thought about the profitability of the website and introduced the charging mechanism:
Two-way charging for the auction sector, the sellers extracted 3.5% of the turnover. The buyer draws a turnover of 3%; the platform bookstore extracts 4% of the turnover of the old book, and receives a service fee of 100-600 yuan per year.
Sun Yutian has always been satisfied with the charging mechanism designed by himself. He does not use the auction ranking to charge extra service fees, which increases the additional burden on the business. Only when they successfully trade, will they draw commissions and increase the merchants. Psychological acceptance.
It is worth mentioning that the company had its first employee and first office in 2006, and the office was hidden in the residential building. Since then, he has been working in the residential building until he moved to the creative industry base outside Beijing’s Fifth Ring Road three years ago. He has not recruited any promotion staff for 15 years, and Sun Yutian himself does not have an independent office or even buy a residential house. .
Fortunately, as an early vertical subdivision platform, Kongnet has absorbed a large number of book stall sellers, and more and more scholars and book lovers have entered the network to form a benign growth. Maintain a natural growth rate of 30% every year.
In 2008, Kongnet visited an average of 1.2 million visitors per day, making it the fourth largest traffic portal in the C2C industry. In Internet Weekly, it was ranked fifth in the China Business Internet Ten-Year Leadership Summit and Top 100 Business Websites, second only to Taobao, Amazon, Paipai.com and Dangdang.
Unexpectedly, Sun Yutian did not know the selection and never attended any awards ceremony. He has very little contact with the outside world. The outside world knows the existence of the hole network, but rarely sees Sun Yutian, the low-key boss.
When the number of Internet business users and the turnover of a family rises year by year, they can make resources, build the founder IP, and preachThe company’s feelings and ingenuity stories are so busy that Sun Yutian lives in his own business world and plays the role of a lone ranger.
Catchers in the field
Living in a rented house, when they are in trouble, they go home to start a business and make up the website. For many years, Sun Yutian is in a stretched position. What is the power? Support him to the present?
Sun Yutian said that he liked literature from an early age, and his desire for money has not been strong. In the early years, a person raised a website for a long time, and later he was hired to recruit employees. His staff also said that Sun Yutian is not a professional, happy every day, traveling, reading, reading, eating, and living a life away from the dust.
On a large scale, Sun Yutian was pushed away by fate and inadvertently entered a blue ocean market. As the market continued to expand, he became the most important beneficiary, and this was the success of the library. As can be seen. However, Sun Yutian, who has been casual and sloppy for a long time, plans to speed up this year.
& ldquo;Why is this time?
In the face of reporters’ questions, Sun Yutian explained that after 15 years of precipitation, all aspects of resources are sufficient to support the rapid development of the network. After the rapid development of the Internet and the disillusionment of the bubble, the cost of recruiting talent will be reduced. More importantly, he hopes to build Kongnet and the Library into a business card of traditional culture, and organize a more comprehensive database of ancient books, so that more people can feel, learn and study Chinese traditional culture.
Sun Yutian said that his picture has always appeared in his mind: he is holding a grandson in his sorrowful years, and telling the story of the past emotionally, may not be thrilling, but every step is solid enough.
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