Business English / Деловой английский язык
Negotiating a deal
Nicole Vernay is a French dress designer who also runs a chain of small boutiques in Paris. She has come to Seoul, in South Korea, to negotiate two deals with Park Kyu Hun, who runs a clothing factory called Fashionpark. Nicole wants to buy his factory's ready-made clothes for resale in France and Park wants to buy the exclusive manufacturing rights to her dress designs. They have a lot of negotiating to do!
|Nicole Vernay||is a dress designer. She is French.|
|Park Kyu Hun||is the owner of Fashionpark Corporation. He is Korean.|
|Vocabulary||Terms of business; licensing agreements; contracts and legal documents.|
|Skills||Negotiating the terms of a deal; countering an unacceptable suggestion; being firm, but flexible; understanding legal language.|
|Documents||A draft licensing agreement; letters; a spreadsheet.|
17.1 Listen and read
Park Kyu Hun and Nicole Vernay are negotiating two deals: he wants to manufacture the dresses that she designs, and she wants to buy the made-up dresses from him for sale in her shops. They are travelling in a car from her hotel to the Fashionpark offices, to start their second session of talks. Listen to what they say. Why is Nicole surprised?
|NICOLE||I thought we should begin today by going over again the main points we agreed yesterday. Then this afternoon I can telephone my lawyer in Paris.|
|PARK||I can save you the trouble, Miss Vernay.I talked to my lawyers last night, and we drafted the agreement. It was faxed to Paris immediately.|
|NICOLE||Ah! You certainly don't waste any time.Did you include what we said about exclusive rights to the Nicole Vernay label?|
|PARK||I've got the document here. There. Clause 14.|
17.2 Document study - 1
The agreement is a very formal document. Clause 14 is shown below. Listen to Nicole read it. Notice how she breaks up the long sentences into short word groups to help her understand and check the document. Put a slash / to mark where each word group begins and ends.
17.3 Document study - 2
Nicole reads Clauses 17 and 18 of the agreement. Listen to her, and put a slash / to mark where she breaks up the document.
17.4 Listen and read
Park and Nicole continue their journey. Listen to what they say. Why does Park think that Nicole would accept Clause 18? Why does Nicole object to Clause 18?
|NICOLE||Er - what’s going on here? Mr Park, I think you are trying to get one jump ahead of me here.|
|PARK||Oh, you are looking at Clause 18 - setting off your debts against our fee payments. I mentioned it in my letter.|
|NICOLE||I'm sorry, Mr Park, this point is just not negotiable.There is no way I could consent to linking the two agreements together like this. They are two quite separate deals.|
|PARK||I think we would find my proposal well worth considering. We'd save time and bank charges. Not so many transfersand letters of credit - a simple entry each month in the account books. Then we settle up at the end of the period. What's wrong with that?|
|NICOLE||Nice try, Mr Park, but you know very well what's wrong with it - you're asking me to give you a big slice of free credit. You don't even allow me the normal terms of trade , payment at ninety days. Just when I need cash - for advertising, trade shows - I get nothing! I must have more money up front.|
|PARK||I'm sure we can find a way round this. Look - we have already found a way through the traffic. Let's go up to my office and talk there.|
17.5 Find the word: licensing agreements
Read the text below on licensing agreements. Write a word from the box to fill each of the gaps.
A company may want to use another company's ideas, designs, or just its name. Every country has laws protecting these things through the registration of patents or copyrights. A a to use another company's b mark can be bought just as its products can be bought, and the price is negotiable, though the process is often complicated; each side is anxious to protect its rights. Business people and their lawyers spend much time and care in negotiating and drafting the c of licensing agreements; even a simple agreement may contain many d . The owner of the idea or design is the e ; the company that wants to use it is the f .
Mr Park will be entitled to use Nicole Vernay's designs only for a limited g - the h of the agreement - and under certain conditions. For example, the licensee must pay 'consideration'; without this, no contract is valid. This will be in the form of a fixed amount, a license i , payable in j at the beginning of each quarter, and a k , payable in l , based on the quantity of Nicole Vernay clothes he has sold during the quarter. The agreement is m ; Nicole cannot allow any other manufacturer to produce clothes to her designs while the contract is in force.
17.6 Writing practice: dictation
Listen again to Nicole reading the clauses from the contract in 17.2 and 17.3. As you listen, write what she says. When you have finished, compare what you have written with the printed clauses in 17.2 and 17.3. You might like to cover up 17.2 and 17.3 while you do this exercise.
17.7 Listen and read
Nicole and Park are now in the Fashionpark office. Listen to what they say. What arguments does Park use to try to persuade Nicole to accept Clause 18?
|PARK||Surely the way to fix this is for me to give you a discount on the shipments that I send you.I appreciate that if I don't pay you cash on the first of the month, that may increase your overdraft. To compensate you for that , I'll give you a discount on the price of the clothes. Your accountant will tell you it's the same in the end, either way.|
|NICOLE||In theory, maybe, but it's too complicated. This is the real reason why I don't want the two agreements to be linked. Both of us will spend time and energy worrying about exchange rates and discounts when we should be selling clothes.|
|PARK||I'm sure you have an accountant, and your accountant has a computer - they will do the work for you!|
|NICOLE||It's the thin end of the wedge.We shall end up, each of us, convinced that the other is cheating. Neither of us will be happy.|
|PARK||Oh, really, Miss Vernay - I think you exaggerate the difficulties. As I told you, in order to pay you, I have to purchase foreign currency through my bank, and I must do this when the exchange rate is favourable.|
|NICOLE||Oh come on, Mr Park!You're not trying to tell me that your company doesn't have a US bank account?|
|PARK||Ah! But we must also consider Korean tax laws, which are very strict.|
17.8 Listen and read
Nicole and Park continue their discussion. Listen to what they say. What words and phrases does Nicole use here and in 17.7 to show that she thinks Park is simply trying to trick or mislead her?
|PARK||There are many problems in doing foreign currency deals overseas if one is importing.|
|NICOLE||But you're not importing, you're paying a licence fee!|
|PARK||I would have to discuss the matter in detail with my financial advisers.|
|NICOLE||Now you're just playing for time.|
|PARK||I assure you ...|
|NICOLE||Mr Park, I simply do not understand why you are creating obstacles to a perfectly simple agreement.I'm very sorry, but we don't appear to be on the same wavelength here at all. I'm going to have lunch. No, thank you - I will take a taxi and have lunch by myself. I'll come back at three o'clock and I hope that we can sort it all out then.|
17.9 Speaking practice: being firm
Listen to this conversation. Then listen again, and speak the part of the man.
|WOMAN||This deal's too complicated. We shall each end up thinking that the other is cheating.|
|MAN||Oh really! I think you exaggerate the difficulties. As I told you, I have to purchase foreign currency.|
|WOMAN||Oh come on! You're not trying to tell me that your company doesn't have a US bank account?|
|MAN||Well, I would have to discuss the matter with my financial advisers.|
|WOMAN||Now you're just playing for time! I'm sorry, but we don't appear to be on the same wavelength here at all. I'm going to have lunch. I'll come back at three o'clock and I hope we can sort it all out then.|
17.10 Document study
Park decides to read through the file of his correspondence with Nicole. Read the letters. How did Nicole first contact Park?
17.11 Writing practice
Suppose that, instead of speaking to Park in Seoul, Nicole had to write to him in reply to his letter of 31 August. Write the letter for her, using her arguments from 17.4, 17.7 and 17.8.
Drawing closer to an agreement
17.12 Listen and read
Nicole and Park meet again after lunch. What is Park's latest offer? How does he 'extend' his offer?
|PARK||Hello again. Miss Vernay. I hope you had a good lunch. I've been thinking about things, and I believe I have come up with a solution.|
|NICOLE||That is good news!|
|PARK||This is what I suggest. On the day the agreement comes into force,I will open an irrevocable letter of credit at your bank in Paris and I will accept your sight bill for an advance payment against royalties.|
|NICOLE||How large an advance?|
|PARK||A hundred thousand dollars.|
|NICOLE||I'm sorry - a hundred thousand is no use to me as a one-off payment.I must have a decent cash flow every month, in case the bank decides to call in my overdraft - which will be more like half a million!|
|PARK||Well, in case of emergency, I'm sure we could stretch a point.|
|NICOLE||Mr Park, over lunch, I've been looking again at the cash-flow figures I worked out before I came here. These figures are for the six months of the agreement and then three months afterwards. The printed figures show how I want to do it. On the right of each column I've put in the figures for what you want to do - setting off my debts against yours each month.|
17.13 Figure practice
When Nicole is back in Paris, one of her colleagues questions her about the figures. Read the spreadsheet carefully, and then answer these questions for Nicole.
shortfall the amount needed to make up the full amount; here, the difference in Nicole's balance if she accepts Park's proposals.
|1||These amounts look very small. Is he really only going to pay a hundred dollars a month?
|2||Why has somebody written different figures on the spreadsheet?
|3||Why didn't he want to pay you anything as a fee?
|4||If you stop ordering goods in March, why do you go on paying until June?
|5||What percentage profit do you make on the clothes you import from Park to sell in France?
|6||If Fashionpark pays you a 5% royalty, what's their total annual turnover expected to be?
17.14 Document study
Look at the spreadsheet again. What is the result of Park's proposal to Nicole's figures? How much would it cost Nicole in interest payments?
17.15 Listen and read
Nicole and Park are about to finish their discussion. Listen to what they say. How did Nicole calculate her interest payments? Why does Park think that the new figures don't make any difference?
|PARK||But this is hypothetical- you are guessing what the royalty will be, and how big your orders will be.|
|NICOLE||Oh? I thought we agreed on these figures as the basis for discussion a month ago?|
|PARK||Well, there you are, then! You see - the result is the same either way, just as I said! You may clear two million dollars.|
|NICOLE||I need two million dollars! But look at the differences between the balances, month by month, and then the interest I have to pay each month on my overdraft. I'm just reckoning eighteen per cent annually, that's one point five per cent a month at simple interest. If you total those interest payments, they come to twenty-seven thousand dollars! If anyone's going to pay that much interest, it should be Fashionpark, not Nicole Vernay.|
|PARK||Can't you pass it on to your customers?|
|NICOLE||Why should my customers pay you twenty-seven thousand dollars? Look, I'll tell you what. You make me an interest-free loan of three hundred thousand dollars for a period of three months, starting on the date the contract starts ...|
|PARK||I'd be better off paying you a hundred thousand a month. Hm. I wonder, though. Perhaps I could arrange some sort of guarantee with my bank.Would you excuse me while I make a phone call?|
17.16 Listen and read
Nicole and Park have now reached agreement. What has Park agreed to pay Nicole? What has Nicole agreed in return?
|PARK||So, as part of our contract, Fashionpark will include a clause guaranteeing a minimum royalty payment of three hundred thousand dollars on 1 December, three months into the contract period.|
|NICOLE||Yes, I think my bank will go along with that- it'll enable me to get my overdraft extended if I have to. And on my side I agree to any money I owe you being offset against the monthly licence fee. In return you will give an additional two point five per cent discount on all invoices.|
|PARK||Yes - on the f.o.b. price, that is.|
|NICOLE||Well, I'm very encouraged by the conversations we've had.|
|PARK||I'm confident we're going to have a very big success this spring.|
|NICOLE||I'll have to go through the small print with my lawyer and my accountant.But I don't think there will be any problems. Thank you for everything you've done, Mr Park. I've enjoyed my visit and I look forward to seeing you in Paris in the New Year. Au revoir!|
|PARK||Au revoir, mademoiselle. You'll be hearing from me soon. Have a good flight!|
17.17 Reading for key words
Find the words or phrases in 17.15 and 17.16 that tell you the following:
|1||This may happen, but it is not certain.
|2||I don't think they ought to pay.
|3||I've got a suggestion to make.
|4||Lend me some money, with no interest.
|5||It would be more profitable for me.
|6||The contract will compel Fashionpark to pay a minimum royalty.
|7||Three months after the contract comes into force.
|8||Agree to that course of action.
|9||Make it possible for me to.
|10||Discuss every detail of the agreement.