Epic Review: eCosway reboot US market?
Epic launched in October of 2013 and is headed up by CEO Glen Jensen.
No corporate address or company information is currently present on the Epic website, however the company’s website domain registration provides a Utah based address in the US.
A “Tina Monson” is provided as the Epic domain owner (“epicera.com”), who credits herself as Glen Jensen’s “executive assistant” in her LinkedIn profile:
Glen Jensen (right) first popped up on my radar as the replacement CEO of Go Fun Rewards, after Randal Williams bailed from the company to go and start JubiRev.
Around a month after accepting the CEO position at GoFunRewards, Jensen resigned from the post. To the best of my knowledge no official reason has ever been made public for Jensen’s abrupt departure.
Jensen was however named by Randal Williams in a lawsuit filed against GoFunReward’s parent company, eAdGear. In his complaint, Williams accused Jensen of
creating revenue positions in the compensation structure of GoFun Places for (his) family members.
After Jensen left the company, GoFunRewards floundered before eventually ceasing operations in the US altogether. This was done under the premise of receiving legal advice concerning GoFunRewards’ business model and compensation plan (indicating that it was a Ponzi scheme).
In addition to Jensen’s involvement in GoFunRewards, he’s also launched Agel Enterprises and Uprize. For a more detailed look at Jensen’s MLM history, see the GoFunRewards BehindMLM review.
Otherwise, read on for a full review of the Epic MLM business opportunity.
The Epic Product Line
What exactly Epic are going to market is not clear at this time. On the company’s website an image depicting Epic branded cacao beverage, essential oils and diet supplement product ranges is shown:
However no further information is provided by the company on the nature of these products.
What is mentioned is that Epic ‘has a strategic alliance with eCosway‘, with whom they are going to ‘leverage the infrastructure of’.
eCosway have their own website up at “ecosway.com”, where they describe what appears to be some sort of retail platform opportunity:
eCosway gives some of its capable and qualified Independent Business Owners the chance to run free stores!
We lease space in a high foot traffic location, do the necessary renovation, set up the store, put in the equipment and all of the products, and then if you are selected, we let you run it and profit from it absolutely FREE!
Operating one of our free stores, is kind of like being a franchisee, but focusing on building a network of people who want to buy our products, do our business or get free stores is kind of like being a franchisor.
No specific products are provided on the eCosway website as examples, however the company does state it markets products in the following niches:
- health and nutrition
- household cleaning
- car care
- personal care
- cosmetics & fragrances
- kitchen and cookware
- bodyshaping lingerie, undergarments and apparel
- food and beverages
- water systems
In a response to an article attorney Kevin Thompson recently published on Epic’s controversial affiliate recruitment tactics, Troy Dooly (MLM HelpDesk) offered some additional insight on the Epic/eCosway business relationship:
Whether or not Epic will market the entire eCosway product range or just a specific Epic branded selection of it is unclear at this time.
The Epic Compensation Plan
Epic’s compensation plan provides upfront retail commissions to affiliates, with residual weekly commissions paid out using a binary compensation structure.
Epic affiliates must maintain at least 100 Personal Volume (PV) points per month in order to qualify for commissions.
This PV can be generated by an affiliate’s own product purchases, or that of their retail and preferred customers.
Epic Affiliate Membership Ranks
There are ten affiliate membership ranks in the Epic compensation plan and, along with their respective qualification criteria, they are as follows:
- Associate – purchase an affiliate pack
- Marketing Partner – generate at least 100 PV within a 28 day period
- Connector – recruit at least two marketing partners (one on each side of the binary) who have each generated at least 100 PV over the last 4 weeks
- Champion – have at least two personally recruited Connector ranked affiliates (1 on each side of the binary) who have generated at least 100 PV over the last 4 weeks, and have a downline generating at least 1500 GV every four weeks
- Mentor – have at least four personally recruited Connector ranked affiliates (2 on each side of the binary) or six personally recruited Marketing Partners (3 on each side of the binary) who have each generated at least 100 PV over the last 4 weeks, and have a downline generating at least 4500 GV every four weeks
- Ambassador – have at least six personally recruited Connector ranked affiliates (at least two on each side of the binary) who have generated at least 100 PV over the last 4 weeks, and have a downline generating at least 12,000 GV every four weeks
- Hero – have at least two personally recruited Ambassador ranked affiliates in your downline, with a total downline sales volume of at least 30,000 GV every four weeks
- Icon – have at least four personally recruited Ambassador ranked affiliates in your downline, with a total downline sales volume of at least 80,000 GV every four weeks
- Legend – have at least six personally recruited Ambassador ranked affiliates in your downline, with a total downline sales volume of at least 200,000 GV every four weeks
- Humanitarian – have at least two Legend ranked affiliates in your personal downline, with a total downline sales volume of at least 500,000 GV every four weeks
Retail customers attract a 10% discount when they purchase products through an Epic affiliate’s replicated online store. Once this discount has been taken into consideration, Epic pays affiliates a retail commission equal to ‘the difference between wholesale and retail‘.
Note that preferred customers (retail customers on a monthly autoship order in exchange to access to wholesale pricing) do not generate retail commissions. Instead their orders generate BV that is paid out elsewhere in the compensation plan.
If an Epic affiliate maintains three preferred customers on a monthly autoship order, the company averages out the difference between these three orders and awards an affiliate a credit on their own monthly autoship order.
An affiliate is able to claim up to $300 a month on their monthly autoship order (shipping is not included).
Note that this preferred customers are also able to qualify for this bonus.
First Order Bonus
When a newly recruited affiliate signs up to Epic and purchases one of the company’s affiliate packs, the company pays out a bonus to the affiliate who did the recruiting.
The First Order Bonus is a cash bonus, with how much being paid out determined by which pack a newly recruited affiliate purchases:
- Introductory Pack ($49) – no bonus
- Foundation Pack ($300) – $20
- Essential Pack ($600) – $45
- Epic Pack ($900) – $90
There is an upline component of the First Order Bonus, paying up a possible seven levels of recruitment.
The upline component is paid out as a percentage according to an affiliate’s membership rank.
- Introductory Pack – no bonus
- Foundation Pack – $40
- Essential Pack – $80
- Epic Pack – $160
Starting with the affiliate who recruited the new affiliate to trigger the First Order Bonus, the system searches their upline and pays out percentages of the generated bonus accordingly.
- Champion – 15%
- Mentor – 15%
- Ambassador – 15%
- Hero – 10%
- Icon – 10%
- Legend – 5%
- Humanitarian – 5%
Note that an upline affiliate is paid “as rank”, meaning that if the next direct upline is an Ambassador, they would receive the Champion (15%), Mentor (15%) and Ambassador (15%) component of the bonus, with the system then continuing to search upline for higher ranked affiliates to pay the rest of the bonus out to.
A second tier bonus is also available at the Ambassador (10%), Hero (5%), Icon (5%) and Legend (5%) ranks, paying out an additional bonus if a second ranked affiliate is found in the upline as the First Order Bonus is paid out.
Residual commissions are paid out in Epic using a binary compensation structure. A binary compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of the structure, with two affiliate positions directly under them.
These two positions form the start of two binary sides, left and right. Business Volume (BV) is calculated between the left and right teams, generated by the sale of products by affiliates in each team.
Once 300 BV has been generated on one side of the binary and 600 BV on the other, a “cycle” is recorded which then pays out a commission at the end of the week.
How much of a commission each binary cycle pays out depends on an Epic affiliate’s membership rank:
- Champion – $30
- Mentor – $35
- Ambassador and above – $40
Binary cycles are capped at 750 a week, resulting in a maximum weekly binary commission of $30,000. Additionally an affiliate’s membership rank also determines how much an affiliate can earn in binary commissions each week:
- Connector – $1000
- Champion – $2500
- Mentor – $5000
- Ambassador – $10,000
- Hero – $15,000
- Icon – $20,000
- Legend – $25,000
- Humanitarian – $30,000
Note that Epic’s binary is a hybrid, with a third leg being introduced once an affiliate reaches the Ambassador rank. Once created, the third leg fills in cohesion with the existing two binary legs.
Volume from the third binary leg is separate to the two existing legs, only being used if one of the existing legs fails to generate enough volume to qualify for a cycle commission.
In this instance the volume from the third binary leg is added to the volume of the weaker binary leg, up until the volume reached matches the volume generated from the previous week.
Binary Commission Matching Bonus
Epic offer affiliates a Matching Bonus on the binary commissions earnt by personally recruited Ambassador ranked affiliates and their downlines.
The binary commission Matching Bonus is paid out down six levels of recruitment:
- Level 1 – 15%
- Levels 2 to 5 – 10%
- Level 6 – 5%
How many matching levels an Epic affiliate is paid out on depends on their affiliate membership rank:
- Mentor – level 1
- Ambassador – levels 1 and 2
- Hero – levels 1 to 3
- Icon – levels 1 to 4
- Legend – levels 1 to 5
- Humanitarian – levels 1 to 6
Note that the Matching Bonus is only paid out on Ambassador ranked affiliates, regardless of the recruitment level they fall on.
Legend Bonus Pool
The Legend Bonus Pool is available to Epic’s Legend and Humanitarian ranked affiliates.
Every quarter Epic puts 3% of the company’s global sales volume and puts it into the Legend Bonus Pool. The Legend Bonus Pool is then paid out to all qualifying Legend and Humanitarian affiliates, subject to how many shares they have generated for that particular quarter.
Shares in the Legend Bonus Pool are generated as follows:
- qualify at the Legend affiliate rank (first time) – 1 share
- remain qualified as a Legend affiliate – 1 share for each month qualified
- personally recruited affiliate qualifies as a Legend – 1 share
- generate 1000 binary cycles for the quarter – 1 share
- qualify at the Humanitarian affiliate rank (first time) – 2 shares
- remain qualified as a Humanitarian affiliate – 2 shares for each month qualified
- personally recruited affiliate qualifies as a Humanitarian – 2 shares
Epic’s Lifestyle Rewards provide Icon and Legend ranked affiliates with access to company paid trips.
- Icon – annual ‘five-day retreat to luxurious resorts in exotic locations around the world‘
- Legend – ‘annual six-day Legend Lifestyle adventure to some of the world’s most exclusive ve-star resorts‘
50% Global Commissions Cap
Epic guarantee to pay out 50% of the global BV generated company-wide. If affiliate commissions exceed this amount, ‘all Marketing Partner commissions will be calculated on a pro-rata basis‘.
Epic affiliates must join the company by purchasing one of the following affiliate packs:
- Introductory Pack – $49
- Foundation Pack – $300
- Essential Pack – $600
- Epic Pack – $900
On the compensation plan side of things Epic is pretty solid. Epic pays out upfront retail commissions (which contribute towards an affiliate’s monthly volume requirement), with downline volume paid out residually via the binary.
The only shortfall I saw was the third binary concept. I haven’t seen it before so props for trying something new, however volume wise things don’t bode too well for the affiliate.
If an Epic affiliate is struggling to maintain the minimum 300 GV trigger for binary cycles, then the third leg’s volume could very well be of use to hit that target.
For every week that volume is not an issue however (and one would hope that it wasn’t at the Ambassador rank the third leg kicks in at), what is unavoidable to notice is that an affiliate’s binary volume is split over three legs. The volume in the third leg is essentially lost, whereas if just two legs existed it would be counted for weekly commissions.
As time goes on and an affiliate’s business grows, the amount of volume lost in this third leg only increases in size. That I wasn’t too fond of.
I do note it’s entirely possible to sign up for a monthly autoship order and then just focus on recruiting new affiliates (earning via the First Order Bonus), however with the commission amount paid out I don’t believe this will be an issue. Dollar wise for the amount of work involved it’s simply not viable versus a retail customer focused business (in the long-term).
Still, prospective Epic affiliates would do well to enquire with their potential upline regarding the amount of satisfied long-term retail customers they’ve brought into the business. A strong retail orientated upline could make all the difference here.
Epic’s product range might also be of some concern, especially if Troy Dooly’s comment about stagnation in the existing eCosway US operations prior to Epic. This might indicate a lack of retail viability via the MLM sales model, which is important because if you can’t sell your products, it matters little what specific MLM compensation plan you’re working with.
Finally Glen Jensen’s colorful corporate history might be of some concern, considering it’s not the most stable of track records. It is of course entirely possible that this time around things might turn out differently, so that’s something that will have to be evaluated carefully by the individual.