Piano school folds, CEO disappears

Updated 2017-09-22 10:00:56 China Daily

Thousands of Xingkong customers suffer losses as 60 centers are closed

Thousands of parents suffered losses as Xingkong, a well-known piano training institute, closed all its 60 centers across China on Sept 2. Its CEO, Zhou Kaicheng, disappeared on Wednesday.

In late August, a mother in Beijing surnamed Xie paid 40,000 yuan (,000) for a two-year course of piano lessons and rental of a piano for her daughter. However, the piano failed to materialize and the 6-year-old didn't get any lessons.

"Xingkong's centers in Beijing are all located in high-end shopping malls such as Wanda and CapitaLand Mall. I did not hesitate for a second to choose a nationwide training company in such credible malls," Xie said.

Like Xie, thousands of parents have approached the police or courts for help. Some of them paid 12,000 yuan for a year of lessons, and some paid around 50,000 yuan to buy or rent a piano and receive free lessons.

Established in 2012, Xingkong was a rising star among educational startups. In December 2015, its gross earnings were 50 million yuan, according to its financial report. However, rapid expansion and investments in other industries resulted in financial pressure.

"Because we expanded our business blindly, we have fallen into a financial crisis and have to close our centers," the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

In addition to parents, teachers employed by Xingkong said they have been affected by the company's difficulties.

"We are victims, just like the parents. Our wages have been delayed for months," one teacher told Beijing News.

In an email sent to the public before he disappeared, Zhou, the CEO, said, "It is hard to give up my career, and I feel really sorry for what staff members and parents have experienced. But I can do nothing but leave. Maybe in the future, I will stage a comeback and compensate you all."

Xie was not impressed.

"Zhou took a gamble with our money to fulfill his ambitions. Even if he has some kind of remorse, he is to blame for lacking social responsibility."

In its statement, Xingkong said it is sparing no effort to raise money to compensate parents and teachers - "as long as there is a gleam of hope".

Also in the News

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time
Showbiz2016/06/16 13:58November 19 2017 12:55:20

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time

Attending Shanghai International Film Festival, Nicole Kidman talks about her role in "Grace of Monaco".

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts
Also in the News2014/05/01 12:16November 19 2017 12:55:20

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'
Also in the News2014/04/18 13:18November 19 2017 12:55:20

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'

Hollywood star Johnny Depp's speech in the upcoming new film "Transcendence" has been disclosed on Friday, April 11th.

Most Watched

News:
China World Business Sports Showbiz Audio
Video:
C4 My Chinese Life The Sound Stage China Revealed Showbiz Video Travel Video
Photos:
China World Fun Travel Entertainment Sports
Travel:
Beijing Shanghai Guangzhou
Lifestyle:
Live Music Opera & Classical Movies Traditional Shows Exhibitions
Learn Chinese:
Chinese Studio Living Chinese Everyday Chinese Just For Fun Chinese Culture Buzzwords