uThriv Review: Product description fail

uthriv-logouThriv launched in late May and operate in the nutrition and personal development MLM niches.

The company is based out of the US state of Georgia and headed up by President and co-founder, Joe Tessin.

According to his uThriv corporate bio,

Joe Tessin has spent his adult life building organizations, leading teams, and coaching individuals as well as consulting with executive management teams.

Most recently Joe has worked as VP of Sales for a network marketing company and that role rekindled his passion for the industry and ultimately caused the spark that is known as uTHRiV. Joe built several network marketing teams over the last decade and was a top income earner in two companies.

joe-tessin-president-uthrivNo specific company name are mentioned, however further research reveals that Tessin (right) has been involved in VizConnect.

VizConnect marketed a $50 QR code + video hosting package. Launched in late 2013, the company appears to have gone into decline shortly thereafter. An overly complicated compensation plan no doubt hampered growth efforts.

In September of 2013 Tessin was credited in a VizConnect press-release as an Executive-Director of the company. By January 2014 Tessin had joined VizConnect’s management team.

A press-release issued on January 13th reads

VizConnect has announced the appointment of Joe Tessin to the VizConnect leadership team beginning in 2014.

Tessin is a multi-level marketing veteran having served as CEO and coach for Better Days Group, a company specializing in personal one-on-one coaching, group coaching, personal development workshops and team development for various organizations.

Tessin has been working as a consultant and Executive Director for VizConnect’s sales team members since early 2013.

Tessin outlined his vision for the VizConnect sales force in 2014.

“We are going to improve communication internally amongst our leadership team and externally with our members,” he said.

“We are going to enhance our products with a focus on building our business, and I will continue to be actively engaged in the field to build our business.”

What happened there I have no idea, but a month later Tessin was up and running with uThriv.

Whether or not Tessin is still with VizConnect is unclear. It is noted though that his uThriv co-founder and Vice-President, Brian Dee, is credited as VizConnect’s “Secretary and Chief Sales Officer”.

Regardless of whether Tessin is still involved with VizConnect, through Brian Dee or otherwise the two companies appear to be maintaining close relations.

Another recent VizConnect press-release (which for some reason does not appear on the VizConnect website itself), dated June 3rd 2014, announced a “partnership” with uThriv:

VizConnect has announced a partnership with UThriv to provide white label mobile marketing platforms for both internal and external outreach.

Through a white label partnership with UThriv, VizConnect will provide access to its innovative suite of mobile video marketing products.

“After working with the VizConnect platform for over a year I am pleased to enter into this strategic partnership between our two companies,” said Joe Tessin, President of UThriv.

The “Better Days Group” company, mentioned in the second press release above, is a non-MLM personal development coaching company owned and operated by Tessin.

Better Days Group exists to help individuals and organizations have better days EVERY day! We believe that we are all here for a reason, and we are only able to feel truly fulfilled when we are living for that purpose.

We want to help you discover your unique design and develop strategies to make that design come to life.

Prior to VizConnect Tessin was involved in the MLM company ProVisionRx, marketing third-party discounts. In June 2012 Tessin was acknowledged by ProVisionRX for reaching the Executive Training Director affiliate rank.

Read on for a full review of the uThriv MLM business opportunity. [Continue reading...]


Global1Entertainment Review: I2G revenue-sharing rebooted

On their own the combination of Infinity 2 Global’s recruitment commissions and revenue-sharing opens up the strong probability that new affiliates money will just be recycled amongst existing I2G affiliates.

Throw in the addition of global gambling revenue and a US presence?

Yeah, this probably isn’t going to end well…

-BehindMLM Infinity2Global Review (September 2013)

global1entertainment-logoThe Achilles heel of all revenue-sharing programs is the necessity to have new affiliates buying into the scheme, so that the company has new funds to pay off existing affiliates with.

No explicit promises are made regarding the revenue-sharing payout (amount of ROI or frequency), but affiliates nonetheless dump thousands of dollars into the scheme on the promise (implied or otherwise) of an eventually >100% ROI.

Typically a customer option is attached to the scheme, but in practice this fails to deliver any significant revenue – with the company instead just shuffling new affiliate money around to pay out affiliates.

A Ponzi scheme by any other name.

And just like a Ponzi scheme, when these revenue-sharing opportunities run out of money they either collapse or, as is the case with I2G, change their name and attempt a relaunch.

Introducing Global1Entertainment. [Continue reading...]


LifePharm Global Review: Fibroblast Growth Factor capsules

lifepharm-global-logoLifePharm Global launched in 2011, with the company naming LifePharm Inc. as its parent.

LifePharm Global Network is a subsidiary of LifePharm, Inc., its parent company.

LifePharm, Inc. began back in 2001, focused on the business of developing, marketing and distributing premium, natural supplements in the retail sector across six countries.

LifePharm, Inc. was one of the first supplement companies in Asia to use popular celebrities to promote, endorse and build brand awareness.

With substantial businesses experience behind us as LifePharm, Inc. – plus an incredibly strong start and continued success with our direct marketing LifePharm Global Network company – we are poised to change the DNA of the industry.

LifePharm Global have a corporate office in the US state of California, but owing to their Asian heritage as part of LifePharm Inc., also maintain offices in Indonesia, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines.

wicky-suyanto-cofounder-ceo-lifepharm-globalHeading up LifePharm Global is CEO is Wicky Suyanto (right).

Born in Indonesia but educated in the United States at Pepperdine University, Wicky Suyanto always had a keen eye for opportunity.

Following many successful retail ventures in Asia and winning several awards for branding and advertising, Wicky and his family moved to the US together to further their children’s education.

About the time his twin sons, Wickson and Winston, graduated from UCLA, Wicky was presented with studies on Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF) and knew it was an opportunity to develop a revolutionary product.

With a strong desire to give people an opportunity to create wealth and be in control of their own success, Wicky chose the channel of direct sales for the revolutionary product we know as Laminine.

Wicky, Wickson and, Winston opened LifePharm Global Network in 2011.

Prior to LifePharm Global, Suyanto appears to have been involved in Pendura Life Visions.

In 2010, a year prior to LifePharm Global starting up, Dr James Siripanich, a co-founder of Pendura wrote

Since the network marketing industry took off 50 years ago, companies have promised that the MLM is a business opportunity partnership, so I know what I mentioned so far to you is nothing new.

I had to ask myself, “Other companies have told people to simply believe in a partnership, how can Pendura make this tangible since the very beginning?”

This is when my friend and Pendura co-founder Wicky Suyanto approached me with the revolutionary idea of letting our distributors own company shares.

Pendura still has a website operational over at “penduralifevisions.com”, but the opportunity appears to be defunct.

Corporation Wiki shows a link between the two companies by way of Bernard Sjauta, who is credited as serving as President of both Pendura and LifePharm Global:

bernard-sjauta-corporation-wiki-lifepharm-global

Sjauta is credited with being the CEO of LifePharm Global as late as December of 2012. In official LifePharm Global newsletters (dated as late as January 2013), Sjauta is also credited as a co-founder of the company:

bernard-sjauta-lifepharm-global-newsletter-2013

I couldn’t find any updates following that newsletter, indicating that Sjauta possibly left the company in 2013. Why is a mystery as there’s no mention of it anywhere on the LifePharm Global website.

Sjauta’s absence from the LifePharm website and a lack of explanation of what led to Wicky Suyanto taking over as CEO is somewhat conspicuous.

In any event, read on for a full review of the LifePharm Global MLM business opportunity. [Continue reading...]


Argent Global suspend US recruitment, i-Payout withdrawals

argent-global-network-logoArgent Global Network seems to have hit a snag recently, with owner Victor Rival holding a conference call last week to deliver the news.

Speaking to the company’s purported 300,000 affiliate investor base, Rival informed them that purportedly Argent Global had hired a “US attorney” to “aid” with the company’s compliance.

The reason is that if you are compliant in the US, you are more accepted worldwide.

For those unfamiliar with the scheme, Argent Global accept $150 to $2400 investments from affiliates under the guise of “packages”.

The company then promises a weekly ROI, ranging from $10 to $160. How much of a ROI is paid out depends on how much an affiliate has invested.

Rival failed to name the US attorney the company has alleged retained, but told investors that the company ‘will not be accepting new members from the US until Argent Global Network is compliant.[Continue reading...]


One80 Review: EPX Body gets a reboot

one80-logoWhen I first reviewed EPX Body back in March of 2012, the company appeared to have an unofficial connection with Xooma Worldwide through its apparent owner, Dan Putnam.

Some months ago EPX Body appears to have gone through a reboot, with the company dropping the “EPX” portion of its name in favor of “One80″. On the domain “epx180.com” however, an image in the footer advises that One80 is “powered by” EPX Body.

Absent on the One80 website is any information on who is running the company. The website does feature an “About 180″ link, however clicking it only brings up the following vague marketing copy:

One80 was started by a group of very successful businessmen with over 100 years of combined experience; they have created an opportunity to help you understand the exact steps you need to take in order to be successful and provide the tools to succeed and take advantage of all the benefits that are available for starting a business.

dan-putnam-owner-of-epxbody-and-xoomaThe EPX Body website domain is still registered to Dan Putnam (right), so he’s evidently still running things. There’s no mention of Xooma Worldwide on the site though.

I’ve had a few requests from readers claiming that EPX Body has mixed things up with the release of One80 now, and today I finally got around to taking a look at what’s changed.

Read on for a full review of the One80 MLM business opportunity. [Continue reading...]


LyfeStart International Review: “Me too” health and nutrition

lyfestart-logoLyfeStart International launched in mid 2014 and are based out of California in the US.

Heading up LyfeStart is Co-founder and CEO, Christopher Pair Garza.

Garza is refreshingly candid about his MLM history, with his LyfeStart bio acknowledging that he is a

former CEO and President of Herbalife (and) former Vice Chairman of the Direct Selling Association.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Garza’s association with Herbalife began in 1985 and continued on till 2001. During this time (1990-2002) he also served as a “Director” at the DSA.

christopher-pair-garza-ceo-founder-lyfestartIn 2002 Garza (right) became the President and CEO of Cynergy Partners Inc., who are described on a LyfeStart investment brief as being

an investment and consulting firm basedin Beverly Hills with a focus on consumer products, network marketing and international expansion.

The brief expands on Garza’s LyfeStart corporate bio, crediting him as the

Director of Neways during its successful sale to a Private Investment Fund for 400mm +.

Mr. Pair served as the Vice Chairman of the DirectSelling Association, and the Boards of the Consumer Health Products Association and the Nutritional Products Association.

He received his BA as well as his MBA from the University of Redland; and also served as a reserve in the OC California Sheriff’s Office.

I’m not entirely sure why LyfeStart credits him as “Mr. Pair” instead of “Mr. Garza” in the brief.

The brief is actually quite an interesting read, as it goes over the starting up of the company and reason LyfeStart were seeking investors:

The Company seeks an investment of $3,000,000, with funds to be used for marketing and sales, inventory, product development and operating capital (the “Offering”).

Upon completion of the Offering, LyfeStart anticipates that it will commercially launch with sales of its four core products in the first quarter of 2014.

Also of note is that the brief reveals Lyfestart is a “Delaware Corp”, meaning they are actually registered in Delaware, not in California where they are based.

In any event, read on for a full review of the LyfeStart International MLM business opportunity. [Continue reading...]


Brazilian feds launch “Operation Orion” against TelexFree

telexfree-logoLess than 24 hours after indictments were handed down against owners Carlos Wanzeler and James Merrill, Brazilian federal police have launched a new operation against TelexFree.

Codenamed operation Orion, supposedly because the constellation Orion aligns with “the three largest pyramids of the Giza pyramid complex” in Egypt (Wikipedia), the operation has thus far resulted in nine search warrants. [Continue reading...]


Merrill and Wanzeler indicted for fraud and conspiracy

grand-jury-indictment-james-merrill-telexfree

telexfree-logoFiled on the 23rd of July, a grand jury has indicted James Merrill and Carlos Wanzeler on eight counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Reading like a BehindMLM review, the grand jury described TelexFree as a pyramid/Ponzi hybrid: [Continue reading...]


Social Free Life Review: 877 EUR for a social network?

social-free-life-logoSocial Free Life launched in early 2014 and provide two addresses on their website, “legal” and “operative”, both in Malta.

The company names Virgilio Degiovanni as a Founder on their website, along with an anonymous group of individuals

who had the unique vision to start it in the first place. Industry investors with business acumen to support the relentless drive led Virgilio Degiovanni to bring Social Free Life Sharing to success.

No specific information (MLM or otherwise) on Degiovanni or his group of investors is provided.

virgilio-degiovanni-founder-social-free-lifeDegiovanni (right) is quite active on the internet, with his Twitter account revealing that he is based out of Milano in Italy. Given this, it would appear the Maltese addresses provided on the Social Free Life website are virtual mailing addresses.

I’ve seen Malta pop up as a preferred business registration for a number of dubious European-based MLM companies recently, so make of that what you will.

On his Facebook page, Degiovanni associates himself with “Virgilio Degiovanni Communication”:

facebook-virgilio-degiovanni-communication

Degiovanni claims the company

provides training for companies and individuals, with a ‘multimedia offer: live events; programs on the web; webinars; podcasts; video.

Meanwhile Degiovanni would appear to be quite well known in Italy, warranting his own Wikipedia entry.

On it, Degiovanni is credited with launching something called “The Millionaire Network” in 1994. It seems to have been some sort of card discount scheme, not unlike what we still see floating around today (charging a fee for access to third-party discounts).

In 1996 Degiovanni expanded The Millionaire Network to encompass the Millionaire’s Market. Auto-translate is a bit iffy, but it seems this company was an attempt to offer retail product discounts through the company.

Following the launch of the Millionaire’s Market, ‘the project ran out in a matter of a couple of years.

In 1998 Degiovanni got involved in telecommunications and online ventures, going on to launch something called “Freedomland” in 2000.

Freedomland was founded in 2000 and owned by the same Degiovanni, is publicly traded on the New Market [9] . However, the stock market does not believe in Freedomland , and the stock falls to € 99.18 on the first day of listing 105.

Within a few months, the stock lose 90% of its value. For supporters of Degiovanni, it is the result of an act hostile speculative. To detractors, however, the share price Freedomland is too high. In fact, Freedomland is the first publicly traded company to mark the collapse of the New Market.

This led to charges being filed against Diogiovanni, which appear to have resulted in a conviction and jail time:

In 2001 Degiovanni is accused of illegal financial and false prospectus. According to the indictment, the actions Freedomland have been placed on the market at an artificially high price, € 105, due to a false prospectus, in which the number of subscribers was “inflated” were shown tens of thousands of subscriptions that reality had not yet been signed. In July 2001, the stock price had fallen to about 16 Euros.

The Court of Milan (sentenced) Degiovanni to ten months’ imprisonment, a negotiated sentence for the forgery of the listing prospectus of Freedomland . Thirty thousand investors have lost 92% of their investment, for a total of 315 million.

A whole bunch of non-MLM related stuff happened after that, with Degiovanni launching his Virgilio Degiovanni Communication company in 2010.

At some point he seems to have gotten involved in Xango, with his name being mentioned in an article covering the 2011 shutdown of Xango in Italy.

Degiovanni is cited as the “President” of FreedomLand and “among the first guru(s) of Multilevel Market(ing)” in Italy.

On January 3rd, Xango was shutdown by “the Italian AntiTrust organization” for fraudulent health claims and operating a compensation plan that focused on the recruitment of new affiliates. What Degiovanni’s specific role was within the company (affiliate or executive) was not clarified.

In any event, now in 2014 Degiovanni appears to be making a comeback in the MLM industry by way of Social Free Life.

Read on for a full review of the Social Free Life MLM business opportunity. [Continue reading...]


Zeek top pimps demand almost $1 million from Receiver

zeekrewardsIt’s almost unfathomable, that the top net-winners in a global $800M Ponzi scheme would dare to ask for more – but here we are.

In a last-ditch attempt to intimidate the Receivership charged with recovering the money they stole, Jerry Napier, Darren Miller and Trudy Gilmond are collectively demanding the Receivership pay them $947,000.

The trio, who are represented by the law firm Nexsen Pruett, have filed counterclaims against the Receiver alleging a breach of contract.

Napier, Miller and Gilmond contend that they “completely performed all of their responsibilities and obligations to RVG under the contract”. That contract in question being the investment of money and then advertised ROI Zeek promised them. [Continue reading...]