Chinese online BBQ seller's Colonel Sanders dream

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2014-03-12 14:27:30

Li Ye's parents expected their son's crazy idea of opening an online barbecue store to flop. But the young businessman has become a millionaire and dreams of building his company into the KFC of the Chinese barbecue industry.

Born into a family of modest means in Yancheng City, Jiangsu Province, about a four-hour drive from Shanghai, Li enrolled in Shanghai Publishing and Printing College in 2005 to pursue a multimedia design major.

His parents moved to Shanghai in 2006 to look after him and run a small barbecue stall at the night market, selling skewers of meat and vegetables.

"My parents work their tails off to support the family. They could at most sell 1,000 yuan (163 U.S. dollars) of barbecued food every night, and they only made a profit of about 100 yuan from it," said the 30-year-old entrepreneur.

"My mother was diagnosed with knee arthritis after long hours of standing, and my father was diagnosed with hyperlipidemia after toiling at the grills every night for years. Now I can make enough money to support them financially, and I want them to enjoy stress-free retirement starting this year," he told Xinhua Tuesday in an interview.

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