Chapter 290: Don’t Go!
Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
“Let go of me!”
“I’m not letting go unless you promise you won’t leave!”
Lu Zhou looked back at Professor Sarrot, who was holding his thigh. He thought, “Is this guy really a professor at Cornell University?”
I definitely wouldn’t do something this embarrassing…
Woolf was muddled as he quickly rushed over and started to help his employer.
However, he was too slow as Sarrot let go on his own.
That was because Lu Zhou promised Sarrot that he would give Sarrot five minutes to give a reason.
Professor Sarrot did not waste any time. He sat back down on the sofa and said, “I’ll sell my Sarrot’s Research Institute to you for five million dollars. I know that you won’t be able to find a research institute in Silicon Valley cheaper than this. I don’t want anything, all of the patents and research results are yours. I just want you to let me stay in the research institute.”
He was right. Five million dollars for the entire research institute was like paying 10 cents on the dollar.
It would be impossible to find cheaper second-hand equipment than this. Also, second-hand equipment could be unreliable, especially for cutting edge instruments. A slight error could cause an experiment to fail.
Sarrot was hurting inside when he quoted this price.
Even if he sold the equipment as second hand, he could at least get seven or eight million dollars.
However, this was not about money.
Lu Zhou would not be convinced so easily. After all, their first impression of each other was too aggressive. He only remembered people throwing shoes on the podium.
“So that I can watch you defraud people with my name?”
Professor Sarrot argued, “What do you mean defraud? Have I ever used research funds to buy cars? To pick up girls? Never! I spent all of the money on experiments! Everything I do is for science! If I don’t exaggerate my experiments to outsiders, then no one would fund my research…”
Lu Zhou did not take Sarrot’s argument seriously. However, the five million dollar price was far below his expected price, making it difficult for him to refuse.
In fact, as a professor at Cornell University, Sarrot was definitely skilled.
In a place like Silicon Valley, one could easily hire an expert in SEM images research. Finding a research team that could complete projects smoothly was a lot more difficult.
After all, everyone had their own projects to do. Most people did not want to jump ship and give up on their own project.
Although Sarrot was not a big name in the materials science industry, he was definitely still mildly famous. Although he liked to bullsh*t, he did not have a bad academic record.
However, he was no saint.
After weighing the pros and cons, Lu Zhou decided to give him a chance.
As for whether Sarrot could perform, it would depend on himself.
Lu Zhou paused for a second before he slowly said, “I can give you a chance.”
Sarrot was willed with joy, he was about to speak but was interrupted by Lu Zhou, “But I have to tell you, you only have one chance. If you want to stay in my research team, you have to be honest. Don’t try to fool me with those ‘honest mistakes’.”
Without hesitation, Sarrot patted his chest and said, “I swear, on the name of God.”
Lu Zhou said, “Unfortunately I’m an atheist, so I’ll have to write your words on a contract.”
Sarrot made a helpless expression. He then shrugged his shoulders to show that he did not care.
Lu Zhou gave Woolf a look, signaling him to give out the contract.
Woolf looked at Lu Zhou with hesitation, as if he was asking, “Is this okay?”
However, Woolf saw that Lu Zhou nodded, so he did not say anything else. He took out the contract from his briefcase and quickly filled in the contract prices.
Lu Zhou stood up from the sofa. He then looked at Sarrot and said, “I’m sure you have already read the contract, the only thing that changed is the price. Of course, you can look at it carefully. I’ll look around the research institute. Once you read it over, you can call me.”
Sarrot was very smart.
He knew exactly what he needed. He also knew what a scholar needed.
The reason why big names are big names was not because of their big brains. It was because they could always receive research funding. Someone was always willing to pay for their research.
For the materials science industry, almost all of the results were made from enormous amounts of research funding.
Without the money, researchers could not publish in [Science]. Without the [Science] publication, there would be no research results, and no one would be willing to invest without research results.
Therefore in some sense, the relationship between academic status and research funding was like the chicken and the egg theory.
The latter was easy to obtain as long as you had the former.
Hence, when an investor wanted to sell their stock in Sarrot’s Research Institute. Sarrot would borrow a loan from the bank and bought back the equipment in his research institute.
This was why he was willing to sell the research institute to Lu Zhou for only a loss of five million dollars.
He did not care about the research team as it would only rot as time went on.
He did not care about the money either. Five million dollars was enough for him to pay back his loans.
Although this meant that he would have nothing at all, he believed that starting from the beginning was the correct decision.
Doing research for Lu Zhou would mean that he would never have to worry about research funding again. Even if Lu Zhou ran out of money, there would be tons of companies willing to fund the research project.
He would be happy to work for free, as long as he produced results, and as long as his name was in the thesis.
When results were out, no one would talk about his past or his previous lack of integrity. He would become Cornell University’s leading expert in lithium batteries, bringing glory to his name…
His instinct told him that this day would eventually come. This investment was definitely worth it!
Sarrot did not make Lu Zhou wait for long. He read the contract from beginning to end and signed his name.
In addition to the research institute transfer contract, there was also an employment agreement and confidentiality agreement.
Lu Zhou hired him as head of the research institute for a $100,000 USD salary. As for bonuses or other benefits, it would depend on Sarrot’s future performance.
Once the contracts were signed, it was time to talk about the research.
After letting Woolf leave, Lu Zhou plugged his USB into his laptop and pulled up the molecular model using the program “Hyperchem”.
Sarrot looked at the spherical structure on the screen and showed interest.
Lu Zhou said, “You don’t need to know what this is. I’m not even sure if it has any value other than some interesting mathematical properties. I need you to complete a set of experiments for me to verify my calculations of this material. If you do what I say, I’ll include your name in the thesis.”
Lu Zhou clicked the mouse.
The graphics on the screen began to change as he continued to speak, “I can’t give you any more information. I can only tell you that this image is obtained from the combination of carbon nanotubes and fullerene materials. Chemically speaking, the two materials are π bonded, forming carbon nanospheres.”
Sarrot frowned and stared at the model for a second. He then said, “It sounds like a good project, but how will we fuse the fullerene and carbon nanotubes together?”
Actually, he wanted to ask what this thing was for, but Lu Zhou clearly did not want to explain it to him, so he gave up on asking.
Lu Zhou looked at Sarrot like he was retarded as he asked, “Good question. If I knew how to synthesize this thing, why would I ask you?”
Sarrot smiled when he realized that his question was nonsense.
Lu Zhou continued and said, “The people from Star Sky Technology will contact you in a few days. I’ll email you regarding the research. Also, I’ll come here and inspect your research progress every month…”
“… I will be at the University of Berkeley for a few days. If you have any questions, you can call or visit me. Any questions?”
Sarrot immediately nodded and said, “Nope.”
Lu Zhou nodded as well.
Once the contracts were signed, the research project was explained, there was no reason for him to stay here any longer.
Professor Sarrot would contact Star Sky Technology regarding the research funding. The experiment would start by the end of this month.
Once Lu Zhou copied the USB data on the computer, he was ready to leave.
Suddenly, Sarrot remembered something and asked, “Oh yeah, since this research institute is yours now, would it be a bit inappropriate calling it my name? I’m saying, do you want to change it to Lu Zhou research institute?”