February 12th 2014
As a new season of Murray Cup racing gets ready to begin, eyes from around the Empire are locked on Ellis system. This time, however, it’s for a very different reason. On 2944-02-09, representatives of the Jysho Corporation came to the city of Aydo on Green/Ellis to open CTR, marking the first time a wholly-Xi’An corporation has opened a business on a Human planet.
While this isn’t the first time the Xi’An have attempted to crack the potentially lucrative Human marketplace, previous companies either allied with Human Corporations or simply failed to connect with the alien (to them) civilization. The latter was illustrated most notably with the Terrestrial Marketplace line of trade stores of 2931, which only made it as far as focus groups that, at the time, were an integral part of securing a Trade License from the Senate. The company attempted what could only be described as logic-based advertising. The former, of course, can be found, most famously, with the Musashi Industrial & Starflight Concern (MISC).
Formed over fifty years ago, CTR enjoyed a steady rise to prominence within the Xi’An Empire by providing fuel and repair services at affordable prices, eventually becoming one of the most trusted providers to the Xi’An civilian population. The fact that CTR also offered repair services to Human ships made it the go-to station while travelling through Xi’An territories.
“I think it’s great,” said Orwell Kindsey, 46, from Ferron. “Every so often, I’ll catch a haul that’ll take me over to Rihlah. This one time, my plant junked out in the middle of nowhere. [CTR] sent a repair ship out and sorted me out. I’d be shocked as hell if a repair station pulled that around here. I’d probably think they were trying to rob me.”
Scores of people turned out for the grand opening. Some were eager to try out the services while others were simply curious to see how a Xi’An business looks. Not everyone was so enthusiastic.
“This is just another example of the government padding their pockets while average working people get stiffed,” Ashley Bin of Ellis said, part of a small group of protestors. “The Xi’An have built and staffed this thing without any local assistance. So when some Senator says that this station is no different than if a Human station opened up, it’s not quite true. Yeah, they get the taxes, but the rest of the money goes back across the border. So not only do we lose the jobs, but the credits aren’t even being spent within the community.”
One of the Jysho Corporation representatives in attendance took a moment to address Ms. Bin’s concerns.
“It is an understandable consideration and one that has been projected. To counteract such feelings of threatened territorialism, Jysho has instituted a training program for Human employees into common CTR practices during construction of a new CTR station in the Croshaw system.”
This consolation did little to appease Ms. Bin and the other protestors. By the end of the day, however, the rest of the public seemed impressed with the Xi’An way of doing business.
“They stayed focused on the systems I was having a problem with, not trying to up-sell me on new scrubbers or air fresheners or that sort of crap.” Alana Hitoshi reported, who stopped mid-way through a haul to Terra to have CTR techs look at her maneuvering thrusters. “It was strangely refreshing.”
Maybe the Xi’An aren’t that disconnected from what Humans really want in a shopping experience after all.