Karatbars International Review: Gold and recruitment
Karatbars International launched in 2011 and claim to be based out of Stuttgart, Germany.
The company’s website domain registration however paints a different picture, with “karatbars.com” being registered to a “Harald Seiz” of “Karat Swiss AG”, operating out of Glarus in Switzerland. Adding to the confusion is a German telephone number provided on the domain registration.
Harald Seiz (right) is credited with being the “found and owner” of Karatbars International on their website. Seiz’s corporate biography reads:
Since the early ’80s, Harald Seiz is self-sufficient in the financial industry. After training in insurance and real estate industry, he worked as an independent financial services provider with a number of companies, where he was very successful. During the mid-90s he reached with a company about 60 million in sales.
(At the) end of 2008, he joined a company into a precious metals business. In just seven months Harald Seiz was the no. 1 for the company. However, his visions were larger than those of the company, which was only active in Germany.
Gold in small units available for everyone – and that worldwide – was a fantastic idea to offer people more certainty. So Harald Seiz founded in 2011 Karatbars International GmbH.
I believe the company Seiz joined in 2008 is KB Gold, although I wasn’t able to find anything specific on Seiz’s MLM past.
From what I’ve been able to put together, there’s been much confusion between KB Gold and Karatbars International, primarily due to both being based out of Germany and both having similar abbreviated names.
One regulatory action that cannot be confused however was the specific warning issued by Canada’s Autorité des marchés financiers in Canada. Issued to potential investors as part of “fraud prevention month”, the AMF wrote:
(Karatbars International’s) investment products are primarily promoted through conferences, the Internet and social media.
With the company’s “Affiliates” program, investors can make Internet-based purchases through Karatbars plans and they are encouraged to recruit two other Affiliates. These Affiliates are in turn encouraged to recruit two other Affiliates each, and so on.
Affiliates are lured by the possibility of earning large payouts, in particular through a percentage of amounts collected from the Karatbars plans and gold products purchased by referrals.
Read on for a full review of the Karatbars International MLM business opportunity.
The Karatbars International Product Line
Karatbars International as a company retail gold on their website (sold per gram).
Collector cards are also mentioned on the Karatbars International website, however these do not appear purchaseable at a retail level.
The Karatbars International Compensation Plan
The Karatbars International compensation plan is poorly written and fails to adequately explain various components of the plan.
Heavily abbreviated and lacking any sort of clarification however, it’s likely to confuse most prospective affiliates to the point of just not bothering with it all together.
I’ve done my best to explain what is presented in the official plan documentation below. By design or otherwise however, note that the break-down below is incomplete due to large amounts of missing or poorly presented information provided by Karatbars themselves.
Karatbars International Affiliate Membership Ranks
There are 12 affiliate membership ranks within the Karatbars International compensation plan. Along with their respective qualification criteria, they are as follows:
- Distributor – sign up as a Karatbars International affiliate
- Supervisor – 200 points a month
- Bronze Supervisor – 500 points a month
- Silver Supervisor – 1250 points a month
- Gold Supervisor – 2500 points a month (or purchase a package)
- Bronze Manager – 4000 points a month
- Silver Manager – 6000 points a month
- Gold Manager – 9000 points a month
- Bronze Director – have two unilevel legs generating 6000 and 4000 points a month respectively, and have personally generated at least 50 sales
- Silver Director – have three unilevel legs generating 6000, 3000 and 2000 points a month respectively, and have personally generated at least 100 sales
- Gold Director – have three unilevel legs generating 9000, 4000 and 3000 points a month respectively, and have personally generated at least 200 sales
- Gold Director Elite – Qualify as a Gold Director, have at least one Gold Director in your downline and have personally generated at least 300 sales
Note that points are generated by affiliate purchases within Karatbars. 2 EUR spent by an affiliate and/or their downline generates 1 point. Also note that “sales” refers to purchases made either by retail customers or recruited affiliates.
Monthly qualification between the Gold Supervisor to Gold Manager, monthly qualification must be maintained at least three times a year to maintain rank. At the Gold Manager level, rank is guaranteed, however higher rank qualification must be maintained on a month to month basis.
There are three packages for sale within Karatbars International: Bronze, Silver and Gold.
Each time an affiliate sells one of these packages to an affiliate they’ve recruited, they are paid a commission. How much of a commission is paid out depends on how much money their downline spends on a package:
- Bronze (239 EUR) – 60 EUR
- Silver (595 EUR) – 150 EUR
- Gold (1595 EUR) – 300 EUR
Unilevel commissions in Karatbars International are paid out according to money spent by recruited affiliates in a downline.
A unilevel compensation plan places an affiliate at the top of a unilevel team, with every personally recruited affiliate placed directly under them:
Karatbars pay out a percentage of the money spent by affiliates in a unilevel team, with commissions tied into “points”(see affiliate membership ranks).
Unilevel commissions are paid out as a percentage of point accumulated by an affiliate, with how much of a percentage earned being determined by an affiliate’s membership rank:
- Distributor – no commission
- Supervisor – 0.5%
- Bronze Supervisor – 1%
- Silver Supervisor – 1.5%
- Gold Supervisor – 2%
- Bronze Manager – 2.5%
- Silver Manager – 3%
- Gold Manager – 3.5%
- Bronze Director – 4%
- Silver Director – 4.5%
- Gold Director – 5%
- Gold Director Elite – 5.5%
Gold Director Elite affiliates can increase their paid percentage, by having additional Gold Director Elite ranked affiliates in their unilevel legs:
- 1 Gold Director Elite affiliate in a unilevel leg – 5.75%
- 2 Gold Director Elite affiliates in a unilevel leg – 5.9%
- 3 Gold Director Elite affiliates in a unilevel leg – 6%
Whether this bonus percentage applies to the entire unilevel or just that particular leg is not clarified.
Note that a percentage override is available on all personally recruited affiliates, paying the percentage difference between their rank and an affiliate’s own rank when commissions are calculated.
Binary commissions in Karatbars are paid out based on the generation of “units”. Units are generated when an affiliate’s downline spend money within the company:
- Silver Package – 20 units
- Bronze Package – 50 units
- Gold Package – 100 units
- purchase 1 gram of gold – 1 unit
- branding card – 50 units
- K-exchange – 20 units
- License – 100 units
- Exclusive Box – 4 units
- Box – 1 unit
- Champagne – 4 units
- Case – 1 unit
Note that gold and the packages are self-explanatory, however there’s no further information about any of the other products on the Karatbars website. Presumably this means they are not for sale at a retail level.
A binary compensation plan places an affiliate at the top of two binary teams, left and right:
As points are generated within these two teams, they are grouped off into cycles, which in turn then pays a commission.
A cycle in Karatbars International is the grouping of 50 units on one binary team and 25 on the other. Once achieved, a cycle pays out a commission and the counted units are removed from the binary.
How much of a commission per cycle is paid out depends on how the highest package level an affiliate has purchased:
- Silver – 40 EUR
- Gold – 60 EUR
- VIP – 80 EUR
Worldwide Turnover Bonus
The compensation plan explanation for the Worldwide Turnover Bonus makes little sense. It appears to be some sort of percentage bonus pool, composed of 95 cents of every gram of gold Karatbars sells.
How the pool is paid out to affiliates is unclear.
The Gold Pool is made up of 1% of Karatbars International’s “lump-sum gold purchases”, which I believe are package purchases and gold purchases over 50 EUR.
In order to qualify for the Gold Pool, a Karatbars affiliate must have three unilevel legs that have generated at least 9000 points each. Points on these three legs are then divided by 1000, which provides the number of shares in the Gold Pool that affiliate qualifies for.
As a Karatbars International affiliate sells grams of gold within their downline, the accumulated balance is used to reward them via Karatbars incentives:
- 1000 units – gold iPhone
- 3000 units – trip to Dubai
- 10,000 units – “mega trip”
- 25,000 units – gold Rolex watch
- 70,000 units – new standard car
- 160,000 units – new deluxe car
- 350,000 units – luxury sports car
- 1,200,000 units – luxury villa
Joining Karatbars International
Affiliate membership to Karatbars International is free, however several commissions and bonuses are tied into the purchase of a package.
With most, if not all Karatbars affiliates likely to purchase a package when they join, this means defacto affiliate membership to Karatbars is between 239 EUR and 1595 EUR.
The public side of Karatbars makes perfect sense. Buy gold, sell gold, get paid. That I have no problems with and it’s all perfectly legitimate (at least on the surface).
Dig deeper however and things get incredibly murky with the compensation plan and affiliate side of things.
The first major red-flag within the Karatbars International compensation plan is the overall pay-to-play aspect of the business.
The compensation plan material (and no doubt affiliates pitching it) stress that Karatbars is free to join. That much is true, however earnings in the binary (including commission qualification itself) and the ability to buy the Bronze Director rank are directly tied into the purchase of a package.
When you combine this with the package bonus paid out on the purchase of one of the packages, things get even more problematic as we start to enter pyramid scheme territory.
You sign up to Karatbars International, buy your package and then recruit others who do the same. This build your points and units and pays you out a direct commission per affiliate recruited.
Packages come with “cards” which offer a discount on the top-tier VIP package, which suggests the company itself encourages this practice (at the VIP package level at least).
It is entirely possible to earn via the selling of gold to retail customers in Karatbars International, however as a business opportunity it’s highly unlikely.
Prospective affiliates would be strong advised to check with their potential upline as to how much gold they are selling to non-affiliates each month. I suspect in most cases one will find it to be negligible, if anything at all.
In summary, there’s nothing inherently wrong with investing in gold, or even building an MLM company around this idea (provided it’s being sold in substantial quantities to non-affiliates). Tack on a recruitment-driven pyramid scheme that incorporates pay-to-play commissions however (and the buying of affiliate rank, which directly affects commission rates), and it’s easy to see why the Canadian AMF issued their fraud alert a few months ago.
I honestly can’t see why anyone other than affiliates would bother purchasing gold through Karatbars, and that’s a problem.
Update 18th November 2015 – As per BehindMLM reader Raymond E Lee Carmichael, as of November 2015 Karatbar’s VIP package has been “discontinued”.
The whole thing can be summed up as:
Give us your money so we can keep it for you, but it’s NOT an investment, because we say it isn’t! (but if you can find people to buy up the units we’ll give you a cut!)
It was KB Gold, but it probably used a separate name for the network marketing activities. KB Gold used MANY different names / many different sub-companies.
Haral Seiz was probably a Master Distributor or something similar. People familiar with the Eastern European market identified a “Mr. S from Slovenia” as the main organizer when KB Gold was introduced in Norway in late 2009 or early 2010. I’m not sure about whether it was Slovenia or Slovakia.
Network Marketing based on gold or silver have some additional red flags, compared to other product based concepts.
* Gold can both be classified as retailable product, investment or currency.
* “Bona fide sale to end users” will require physical delivery of a product or service. “Gold certificates” are not physical delivery of a product, it’s a type of investment.
* VAT problems. Affiliates can be forced to pay local sales taxes.
I wanted to point out that there are several mistakes in your review. First, if you purchase a package you come in as a bronze supervisor, not manager and it is only for your first month. You then have to earn your placement.
The overall system encourages gold purchases, hence the number of required sales to reach a certain level. I personally have people in my group who are free affiliates and only purchasing gold.
Also, there are 4 packages, not three. Bronze, Silver, Gold, and VIP. Additionally, your units are off. 5 units for a bronze package, 20 for a Silver, 50 for a Gold, and 100 for a VIP.
I have taken delivery of the gold and have had it tested and it is pure gold. You can also store the gold in a secure off-site facility not owned by Karatbars and can take delivery at any point you wish.
The countries with the fiat currencies have paper money with declining values and Karatbars gives the normal everyday person an easy way to buy small, consumable quantities of gold. You can ask 10 people if they think they should own gold and 9 of 10 will say “yes”. Then you can ask them if they do and usually 7 or 8 of the same 10 will say “No”.
I have worked many businesses in the past, both traditional and network marketing. This is the first time I can say that I feel like the product people are buying is a product that makes them in a better position for their financial future.
Thanks for the correction.
That wasn’t mentioned in the compensation plan material I cited (I just went back and checked). I’ll leave it up as a comment but have omitted it from the review.
Again, the compensation plan material I cited only shows Silver to VIP, with the unit numbers I listed.
The problem is retailability. Karatbars themselves are advertising “no sales”, which is a problem.
Trading currency is not a valid MLM product.
I am sorry… I should have added this. They are not claiming to be an MLM company.
In fact they specifically state that they are not. From a recent newsletter.
What they claim is irrelevant, it’s what they are that matters.
Binary commissions? MLM income opportunity.
None of that is relevant.
This is one of the most off-based reviews I’ve ever read. Karatbars International is Not an MLM and not just because they say so. There are many differences.
First of all, you are not required to do anything at all. You may simply want to purchase 999.9 pure currency grade gold in small quantities. You do not Sell gold to anyone, you don’t handle any product. You simply refer people to the business.
You can open an account for FREE, you do not have to purchase anything in order to earn commissions. However to up your earning potential, you do buy a package (which gives you gold), which then gives you access to the Dual System, where your earnings are unlimited.
I have never seen anyone lose money in this business. Why? Because they are simple exchanging their own fiat paper currency for gold. It is their gold, still their own money. You are not buying juice, pills, skin cream, etc. holding inventory….
I know many very astute business people who have done their due diligence and have not found anything wrong with this business at all. It’s all up to the individual as to what they want to do with it. Some see the value in purchasing gold for INSURANCE for their future, it is not an investment. Some want the opportunity to make a decent part of full time income, some want both.
This company has had record growth in the past 6 months. People are understanding our nation’s economy and are protecting themselves. I’d rather have gold then juice.
Do more research please.
Unilevel-based comp plan? Yeah… it’s MLM.
None of the “reasons” you cited they weren’t have anything to do with the business model, which is what defines an MLM company as one or not.
And get paid? Well I know what that sounds like…
Otherwise known as “pay to play”, but go on…
Irrelevant. All recruitment-driven schemes pay out until the recruitment slows down.
Who you know is irrelevant. All that matter is Karatbars’ compensation plan.
More irrelevant waffle.
Get a clue please. If you have to waffle on about all and sundry whilst completely ignoring the business model, that should send red flags up all round.
Hi really enjoyed reading through the information I have a network marketing back ground and I WOULD find it hard to convince people that this is not a network marketing business. I also found this programme hard to understand and to xplain.
Just a question for the moderators of this forum. Are there any home based businesses you recommend for the average person who is trying to improve their finances?
I ask because I have read your comments on various companies an do not recall you endorsing any of them. So is there something out there for someone who wants to earn an extra income to supplement the meager wages being offered by many companies?
No doubt there is, but you wont find any recommendations or recruitment spam here.
BehindMLM is an information resource, your due diligence is up to you.
Opportunities don’t work like that. They’re typically about making OTHERS want to improve something. 🙂
People want to improve much more than finances. You will most likely indirectly be able to improve your finances if you’re able to find out what people want to improve and gladly will pay for, and you’re able to be the one delivering it to them.
You mean like finding an item that 10,000 people want and who will each pay me $100 so I can make a million? I am thinking about that.
And AdSurfDaily / Zeek Rewards / TelexFree are not MLM or “investments”, according to respective managements. So?
Really ? Then why would you say this ?
I thought I’m not required to do anything.?? Red Flag 1.
Ok, you just said I don’t have to purchase anything to earn commissions. So why say this ???
You just said I don’t have to “Buy” anything in order to earn commissions ??? You’re dancing around the truth. Never say “you are not required to do anything at all” That is a flat out lie.
MLM. Not MLM. Referral business. Reading all this just makes me wonder. Whether ur in or out it all comes down to buyer beware. Just like in any real life situation some make it and some don’t. 300000 people went to California in 1848-1855. Some found gold some didn’t. The ones who made the most were the ones who sold the things needed to pan or dig for gold.
To tell me that working at Walmart for min wage is the answer. Just like here in Ontario Canada we have a politician who says he is going to bring 1 million new good paying middle class jobs to our province. How? There is only aroun 13 million people in the area. He wants to cut 100000 jobs at the same time.
This gold business may be a mirage yet we stand for the lies and promises for these fools that someone elects.
No matter what if I can trade my fiat currency and get gold be a business with tax write downs share it and make some money. What is wrong with that.
They say u will run out of new people to get them in. They are right. Yet they say we can pay off our debt as a country. Math tells us that also can’t happen. So who cares !!!!
A financial melt down will happen. When is the question. Are u ready for that day. Gold is the oldest money that all people trust. Not the USA dollar. It is backed by debt and a class of people that have lost their desire to embrace change.
Nothing is free. Wealth comes from work skill and a desire to do better then our fore fathers and mothers. And working again at Walmart will not give u the promise of a happy fulfilled life. When our governments keep seeking our wealth.
What u got to loose. If u only have a bit to spend then find a dealer of gold and go trade ur paper money for gold. They will like u as u give that business profit. Or u open a gold ebusiness buy ur own gold to save others my want to have some gold so u can sell them directly.
If they want a tax benefit of business deductions and make a percent from ur sales also what’s wrong with that. McDonald’s I believe does that for people.
That’s my gold nugget to this rant about karat bars business.
If u do nothing u get nothing. That’s the uneversal law
^^ Cool story bro.
Not sure what it has to do with recruitment-driven MLM schemes like Karatbars though.
First of all, I am an affiliate in Karatbars. Secondly, I am an affiliate or past affiliate in a number of other companies that ARE MLM…Young Living Essential Oils, currently. Melaleuca, Amway and others in the past.
I am having no problems with Karatbars or how the program works. I have my gold cards delivered to me and to save on shipping, now that I have a variety of cards to show others, I allow the cards to be stored until I have about 5 purchased. When I ask for delivery, the cards arrive via Federal Express, with tracking provided and there has never been any delay.
When I’ve had questions on any aspect of business and send emails to the company, I get a response right away. Customer service is great!
As far as the beginning of the article where it says: “Karatbars International launched in 2011 and claim to be based out of Stuttgart, Germany.” seems a very biased way to start this article as the company IS based in Stuttgart.
There IS an office with people in it in downtown Stuttgart. I’ve had German friends go check it out. Many people have domains registered in other countries or even parts of their businesses in other countries.
The company’s owner HAS visited the USA and Canada numerous times and people above me on my team have met him personally, so he IS a real person.
The part I like about this company is that a small time buyer can get started with buying gold in small increments that are affordable to them. The cards are convenient and easy to transport. People on my team HAVE had them checked out by gold dealers and they’ve proven authentic and proper weight.
There are two other companies in Europe selling currency grade gold in this card format. It is a new concept in the USA and Canada only. I don’t really care if you call it MLM. People should see if their goals match up with a company and judge if the company does what it says.
For me, it was about saving money in gold to have a safeguard for some of our dollars should the economy crash. It’s not about buying into the 12 week plan. BUT, the 12 week plan as taught in the webinars ALWAYS clearly says it is nothing except a mathematical plan…it’s not a promise.
We all should KNOW that not everyone who signs on to any home business plan, will actually achieve results. Most do not because they do not WORK the business. They think they will, but they are not goal directed enough to run their own business.
I am just getting started and if I make some commissions good for me. If the company falls apart next year, I will only have spent my dollars for some gold in hand. I will not have a bunch of products sitting on a shelf that I really do not want.
I will have GOLD which is what I DO want! But no one is going to make me rich if I do not do anything…and I would not be one to complain about it if I do nothing to make a business work out for me!
Did you ask them why they are paying commissions on the recruitment of new affiliates? What about the pay-to-play aspect of the compensation plan?
You don’t need to regurgitate the marketing schtick here. It’s “all about the gold”, got it.
(Ozedit: Offtopic whinging removed)
Karatbars does NOT pay for referring others. Karatbars pays for the gold or other products that the referral purchases. Huge difference.
Secondly, you do NOT have to pay to play. That has been mentioned over and over. You can enroll for free, purchase gold, or NOT, refer others, and still earn a commission on your referral’s purchases. Buying a package is Optional as is everything w/ this company.
If those of you who seem to know so much about MLMs etc would look at the differences, they would be Chrystal clear. There is nothing inherently wrong with MLM companies, but Karatbars is an Affiliate program, not MLM, not pyramid, which some of you seem to be inferring.
You do NOT have to keep “recruiting”.
You can use your Karatbars account as you want, to purchase small affordable weights of gold for yourself, you can work this as a casual business and make a little money or you can make as much as you want out of it.
There is NO way for someone to lose money in this since the gold they are buying, they are keeping. The only outlay of $ is if you WANT to participate in the Dual System which pays a whole different way, then you purchase a package.
No other monthly requirements, no points flushing, no paying on weaker leg, you get paid on BOTH. You don’t have to purchase one single gram of gold if you don’t want to.
This is not for traders or investors. Different mentality. I wish instead of being so negative, maybe just for a brief moment listen to some people who are doing very well.
You don’t have to buy into it, to enroll, but just get a different perspective. I’m not trying to sell you on anything, just set some things straight.
Have a wonderful day!
This is called a defacto recruitment commission.
Gone are the days you can mask a pyramid scheme behind the purchase of a product or service. If said purchase is tied to recruitment (“referral”), then it’s a recruitment commission.
Purchase it with what? Toenail clippings?
Of course it’s pay to play.
That’s not part of the MLM side of the opportunity, which is what’s under review here. Practically every commission paid out under MLM components of the compensation plan are tied into a package purchase.
Binaries don’t fill themselves, and existing affiliates are only going to autoship without recruitment for so long.
If you want to participate in the recruitment commissions, invest in a package (pay to play).
Got it. Why are you repeating what has already been stated in the review?
Optional participation in what is otherwise a pyramid scheme is neither here nor there.
There is no proof that dollar for dollar gold is purchased to fund each and every dollar affiliates pump into the scheme.
There can’t be, otherwise there’s no money left over to pay recruitment commissions.
This is why the official Karatbars presentation video clearly states affiliates are “not actually purchasing gold”. Instead they’re converting their real money into the virtual currency Karatbars use to run their scheme.
This currency is only converted into gold if an affiliate cashes out with gold (which they don’t, because it’s marketed as an income opportunity – not as a purchase of actual gold).
Fail fail fail.
The mentality is neither here nor there. The mechanics of the compensation plan and how commissions are paid out are all that is relevant.
Here’s a cookie. While you eat it consider that negativity and positivity don’t factor into the equation. Nobody has time for your emotional garbage.
Nor does people “doing well” in any way justify what is otherwise a recruitment-driven scheme.
question for the karatbars supporters, how do you see your program being any different than emgoldex and swissgolden opportunity.
karatbars is already in question by authorities in Canada, how much longer before Massachusetts issues a warning and you are left holding or your gold is in a vault waiting to be delivered. think you will get it then?
Again – IDIOT!! There is no recruitment commission being paid. You can recruit 100 people and never will make a penny until they trade their paper currency for gold or purchase a package!
FACT: No one gets paid just for recruiting people!
put money into the scheme. It’s a defacto recruitment commission setup commonly used by Ponzi schemes.
People don’t join Ponzi schemes to feel warm and fuzzy inside, they do so to invest and rip people off. If you earn a commission when investors you recruit invest, that’s a defacto recruitment commission (you wouldn’t have earned that specific commission without recruitment).
In any event, arguing pseudo-compliance semantics is rather pointless when you’ve got a blatant Ponzi scheme running under the hood.
You didn’t read all four steps of the Koscot test.
todays prices for a troy ounce- $1282.00
Karatbars troy ounce $2007.00
Karatbars will buy it back from you for $1371.00 nope no commissions there.
why not eliminate karatbars from the equation and buy an ounce of gold and hold it yourself to see if it will rise against the dollar?
A warning is a regulatory action??? A warning by a Socialist Quebec govt official?? I work in healthcare. I know what a regulatory action is. A WARNING IS NOT A REGULATORY ACTION. Where are the rest of the Canadien provinces?
With Karatbars you get real gold. Gold is just another tool to diversify. What do most network marketers have at the end of the month? An empty container. At the end of the month, with Karatbars you have have real gold!
I have my real Karatbar gold in hand.
Pay to Play…yes…so what?…I know of a few , very successful MLM companies, where you can buy a package to improve your earnings, Youngevity, for example….
The purchase package just allows me to earn more on my binary each cycle. of which yes, I must recruit to fill the binary.
(Ozedit: Offtopic derail attempts removed)
If issued by a regulator, then yes.
Obvious is obvious, duh.
Only once the Ponzi/pyramid scheme part of the scheme has played out. There’s no gold unless an investor cashes out and specifically requests it.
Up until that point, new affiliate funds are used to pay out recruitment commissions and to pay out withdrawal requests by previous investors (be it gold or cash).
Note that the binary in and of itself isn’t a problem, it’s the manner in which it’s used (recruitment incentive for the main investment scheme).
Does anybody have a problem with all the ballyhoo about this:
It turns out that the so-called “offices” are simply a Regus office sharing arrangement on the 20th floor with 33 other entities. AND it may be simply a “corporate presence” with only phone answering, mail forwarding service and on-demand use of a conference room for additional fees.
See Regus office locations:
I stated..”is a warning a regulatory action?” . You replied “if issued by a regulatory, then yes”….hmmm so the health warning on a can of beer for potential risks is ?????? but yet beer is sold in billions every year.
also, could it be the only coincidence that one of the biggest online gold sellers , Kitco.com is from Montreal, Quebec…I find it interesting that no other governments are releasing warnings.
I have gotten real gold from Karatbars. Or they will store for free. it would be very expensive to send each gram of gold at a time. Are you aware how much storage of gold costs with other gold sellers? Try 10% of purchase.
if Karatbars were a ponzi scheme, wouldnt it have petered out by now? Im not seeing a lot of new signups buying the bug packages?
(Ozedit: Offtopic derail attempt removed)
Yeah good one chief. Because all regulatory actions are of the same magnitude.
Nope. Karatbars is a recruitment-driven pyramid scheme irrespective of who does or doesn’t operate in Canada.
Cool. Still a recruitment scheme.
Nope don’t give a shit. Karatbars store nothing. The only gold that comes into existance is when an affiliate requests they be paid in gold that is shipped to them.
Other than that, everything is virtual BS.
Ponzi schemes exist as long as new investors continue to dump funds into the scheme and ROIs paid out don’t exhaust the reserves.
Quite the scam they’ve got going here, trapping as much money in the scheme as possible under the guise of “we’ll hold your imaginary gold for you”.
You suck at investor recruitment. That has little to do with the plebs at the bottom recruiting new investors.
Ponzi schemes survive so long as someone somewhere in the company is recruiting new investors. That and those already in the scheme don’t ramp up withdrawals to exhaust the system (which inevitably happens anyway).
This is old news, as you can see it is dated April, 2014. Also Karatbars International is not an MLM or network marketing company thus cannot be a “Pyramid Scheme.”
They are registered as an E-commerce business and sanctioned by the WTO (World Trade Organizaton) as such! Checkout their credibility below …………….
(Ozedit: bullshit marketing spam removed)
Has the comp plan changed? Old news maybe, but still entirely relevant.
MLM comp plan? MLM business.
Oh please, where exactly do you “register as an e-commerce business” these days?
And proof of WTO sanctioning? (none was included in the marketing spam you attempted to publish)
Thank you for your time and research. I have been considering buying one or more Karatbars.
My Spidey sense started tingling when it appeared I could not simply buy a card without joining something, and again when I read about up lines and down lines. I started wondering how they grow as a business.
If replacing my fiat currency with physical gold is wise, why are they doing the opposite? You helped me make my decision.
Grateful truth seeker, David
Financial guru Matt Rettick joins karatvars wonder what they are paying him?
The cost in Euros to buy one gram of equivalent karatbars gold elsewhere is about 20 Euros less. Why would one buy from Karatbars?
Smh. I have bookmarked your site for sometime now and it does help with research on the tons of ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ companies that pollute the internet. I truly appreciate the work that you do.
However, in this particular review, I notice with some concern that there are some errors listed and an opinion formed on some aspects of the comp plan that is not be shaken, no matter who attempts to correct you. Now, I know you have a right to your opinion, but when facts are mixed with opinion, some readers may get confused.
So here is my response to the thread.
1. “My Spidey sense started tingling when it appeared I could not simply buy a card without joining something”
This is not true. One can join either as a customer or an affiliate. As a customer, he can simply buy products without being a part of the comp plan.
This is similar to signing up for an eBay or Amazon account under an affiliate’s link (yes, they do have affiliate programmes too) just to purchase items. Whether gold, branding cards, or whatever product – WITHOUT BEING AN AFFILIATE.
This passes one test of the SEC no-no that many companies fail “It should be possible for customers to buy a product without being part of the comp plan.” KBI passes this test with flying colours.
2. “Pay to Play”
I believe you are attempting to say that the only way to get paid is to buy something in the business for yourself. However, this is incorrect in this particular case.
As stated in #1 above, one can join as a customer and simply purchase products. If he/she signs up as a customer using an affiliate’s link, the affiliate would of course get commissions on sale of products – just as the Amazon affiliate would get paid commissions on sale of products when customers signup using their link.
In neither case are the affiliates themselves required to purchase anything first before they can earn commissions. They are simply sales agents for the company. Note also that the key argument being presented is not the quantity being paid, but that they HAVE to pay to earn.
According to the unilevel model, it is possible for an affiliate with zero downline and sales of 400g of gold in one month will earn approx €700 income [400g x €50 = €20,000 x 3.5% = €700 or US$974].
How much people referred? zero. How much product did he purchase himself? zero. How much did he earn? Almost US$1000 in pure sales commissions.
How does this align with the ‘Pay to Play’ argument? It can’t – it just falls apart.
Note that affiliates or ‘sales agents’ can even simply sell branded cards. At the recent World Cup 2014, many had ordered the branded collector’s edition WC cards.
Imagine the commissions on product sales generated. Yes, commissions on sales, the concept that makes businesses flourish worldwide, online or offline. So the ‘Pay to Play’ allegation – unfounded.
3. “Recruitment Commissions”
No one gets commissions for recruitment. The literal translation of this is that one gets commissions for recruiting.
Now I agree that there are many programs out there that pay a commission to agents whenever anyone signs up in their scheme, but that doesn’t happen in karatbars.
As J Braun says above, one can ‘recruit’ 100 persons in their programme and still get no payment – for zero commissions come from recruitment.
Since there are no payouts specifically for recruitment, I believe your other interpretation for that term you use is that when people purchase a package, the funds used to purchase IS the recruitment commission.
However, I have read and re-read your review and there is absolutely no mention of what is purchased in the package.
Every package purchased is a real product, unlike other programmes where you pay more to receive, well, nothing physical. Why is it called a package? Because it is a collection of items that can be bought individually! Hence, the term ‘package’.
What does it include?
EUR2.00 Gold Brochure.
EUR7.00 Company Information Brochure w/DVD
EUR80.00 Bonus Card [EUR100 off on package purchase]
EUR16.00 Bonus Card [3% off gold purchases for 1yr]
The above physical items are included in the purchase of a Bronze package, which costs EUR99.00. However they can ALL be purchased separately for EUR105!!!
The fact that it costs more begs the question, how can buying products as a package for less be considered ‘recruitment commission’ when it costs more purchased otherwise for less commissions?
The difference in pricing is even greater when the higher packages are purchased. However, all items are delivered to the affiliate via Fedex.
So even if there is a small commission on the sale of these items that goes to the affiliate, it still boils down to ‘commissions on SALES’ and NOT ‘commission on RECRUITMENT’. There is zero commissions generated when someone signs up, whether as a customer or affiliate.
As such, in order to be more accurate, the line in your review which states “pays you out a direct commission per affiliate recruited” should be reworded “pays you out a direct commissions on SALES made from affiliates and/or customers.”
So ‘Recruitment Commissions’ concept also debunked.
4. “Buying of a Director Rank”
This is also incorrect. The purchase of packages for the Dual Team system does NOT change their rank on the Unilevel side. The rank on the Unilevel only increases based on the amount of points generated from the sale of Gold products on the team.
For example, one who purchases a Silver package is still ranked as a Distributor. The Rank does not change with purchase of a product.
(Ozedit: Link to marketing spam removed, do not repost.)
As I stated in the beginning, I truly appreciate the great work you are doing in aiding others in doing their due diligence. However in this case, I honestly believe some of the facts discussed are mis-presented and not in alignment with some opinions expressed.
– Is not a Pay to Play programme
– Does not give commissions on Recruitment
– Allows purchases of products without being part of the comp scheme
– Does not change Rank on package purchase
– Has been determined a legit company after legal investigation. (Ozedit: The link published was to some random attorney on a spam blog, take any investigation mentioned by Karatbars affiliates with a dumpster truckload of salt.)
I hereby request a revised review of Karatbars. Based on my due diligence, it is as they claim an eCommerce company selling the gold product. They pay commissions to sales agents who aid in selling their gold to international channels using the Affiliate-based model.
Commissions are paid out based on sales of products, whether individual or packaged. There are sales levels, but these are incentives to increase sales, as is done in many brick and mortar businesses.
The company has legally been investigated and came out clean, with no evidence of any wrongdoing.
That’s cute. Basing a review on a company’s compensation plan leaves no room for opinion.
The only time opinion factors in is when we get affiliates crying about people not buying their pseudo-compliance BS.
Let’s get this over with then…
There’s no shopping mechanism on the Karatbars website. I just went and rechecked.
Customers need sponsor details or they cannot sign up. Furthermore if one clicks “terms and conditions” as linked to on the “sign up as a customer page”, affiliate terms and conditions pop up.
Obviously not much thought has gone into the customer side Karatbars, because it’s irrelevant. Which is fair enough. You can’t expect a company to waste too much time and resources into pseudo-compliance.
On the topic of Pay to play:
That’s got nothing to do with affiliate’s having to pay to play.
Yeah what’s possible is irrelevant. You and I both know affiliates are funding their own commission qualification. That’s pay to play, irrespective of whatever else “is possible”.
Seeing as nobody is going to be recruiting 100 affiliates who don’t buy into the compensation plan, that’s a silly argument to make.
Separating affiliates handing over money after they’ve joined as opposed to immediately when they joined does not change the fact you’re getting paid to recruit new affiliates.
You get paid when they dump money into Karatbars. I recruit someone, they buy in and I get paid. It makes no difference how this is dressed up.
Yeah look, bits of shiny paper is all very well but let’s cut the crap. You’re purchasing positions in the compensation plan.
Whatever you attach to that is again, irrelevant. And nobody is buying Karatbars brochures for 100+EUR so again, more pseudo-compliance.
But it does change their rank in at least one aspect of the compensation plan. So it’s very much much buying an affiliate rank, which is hardly surprising when affiliates are self-purchasing to qualify for commissions.
a recruitment-driven opportunity which just enough fluff added to it so that affiliates such as yourself can run around the internet and hope you spout enough possibilities to detract attention away from the glaring issues with the business model.
Nothing more, nothing less. Thanks for stopping by.
Oh and if you’re going to rely, feel free to share with us how much you’ve pumped into the scheme, how much your recruited affiliate downlines have pumped into the scheme, and dollar for dollar, how much retail sales you personally have generated.
Otherwise don’t bother replying, we’ll just chalk you up as another hit and run scammer.
1. That’s FTC, not SEC. FTC will primarily focus on commercial issues, e.g. MLM based pyramid schemes. SEC will primarily focus on investment based issues, e.g. Ponzi schemes or pyramid schemes.
KaratBars may be seen as both “recruitment based” or as “investment based”. Or it may also be seen as “product based MLM” by some people.
I don’t think there has been any dispute about whether people can join as customers.
2. “Pay to Play”
That example was hypothetical. It will need to be backed up by some data from reality. How much gold do YOU sell to external customers per month?
If you won’t use yourself as an example, use some other real example. I asked about YOUR sale simply because that is something you easily should be able to answer directly without checking any sources.
Hypotheticals can be plain BS, and it usually is. That’s also why people are using hypothetical examples, because hypotheticals will accept almost ANY FACTOR to be added, removed or adjusted to support their own point of view.
Again, you referred to hypotheticals, to imaginary profit.
3. “Recruitment Commissions”
Recruitment commission will cover DIRECT and INDIRECT commission arising from the recruitment of other participants (e.g. according to the BurnLounge case, referring to Webster v. Omnitrition).
So your literal translation is flawed, it doesn’t reflect the realities.
This part should normally be about “Pay to play”, but it may also be about recruitment commission.
* A gold brochure is not a retailable product.
* A company information brochure is not a retailable product.
* A Bonus Card isn’t a retailable product in itself.
* A Bonus Card isn’t a retailable product in itself.
The first 2 items are marketing material. They can be included in a starter kit “at cost” (a fair price reflecting the costs).
The last 2 items are discount cards. You can’t sell discounts as retailable products. You can sell “something” there, e.g. the service of organizing a discount system and making it available to consumers may have a value.
“Retailable” means it will involve an exchange of value. A gold bar has some value, but a discount card promising a reduced price on a future purchase of a gold bar doesn’t have the same type of value. It may have a “perceived value” for some consumers, but that doesn’t qualify as “retailable”.
A “well informed consumer” will usually not PAY FOR discount offers (other than some minimal fees for the service). “Poorly informed consumers” may do it, but you can’t use that as an argument in court.
So your example failed the test.
But he probably focused on his own “literal translation” idea?
If the realities had been different, “literal translation” could have been the right idea.
I’m not familiar with the last argument there, but the first 3 arguments are based on flawed logical ideas.
“Change of rank” is normally about the right to earn a higher commission. It doesn’t really matter whether that commission is DIRECT or INDIRECT type, or whether it’s paid out as “points” or money, or what they have decided to call it (commission, bonus, etc.).
“Commission” is something that is being paid out by the company or have been organized by the company (e.g. Empower Network had a system organized, but didn’t directly pay money out). It doesn’t include certain types of discounts (e.g. Herbalife’s wholesale price slider is actually a discount system).
You had too many flawed ideas / hypothetical examples.
You must first defend your own logical reasoning, e.g. the “literal translation” idea and the reasoning based on the content of the Bronze package. Hypothetical examples must be replaced with some real ones.
“I hereby request … based on my due diligence”
Life simply doesn’t work that way. You have probably managed to convince yourself about something, but you can’t expect that to immediately affect how other people will see it.
You have already got what you requested here. We have looked into your arguments, and the review has been modified where it was needed = we didn’t modify anything.
If you want to have reviews specifically written to reflect your own ideas, then you should probably write them yourself and store them on your own computer (and look at them each day, etc.).
This is quite interesting reasoning. I took some time to carefully identify a non-karatbars related source (Ozedit: spam removed.).
the very first thing that you do in karatbars ie sell business kits at euro99, is illegal, because:
1] you pay commissions on these kits.
2] i bet these kits are non refundable.
3] inspite of your claims of free membership, it’s obvious most reps buy this kit.
if over 90% of your reps are buying these commissionable nonrefundable kits, at joining, your’e in the oven for securities fraud. forget the rest of your ‘gold business’, your first step itself bakes you.
In this post, I would like to specifically address the observation:
That is accurate. (Ozedit: I’ll cut you off there. That it is accurate is all that matters. Do not pretend there’s a true or even viable retail offering in Karatbars when it clearly doesn’t exist.)
We see attorneys publish bullshit all the time in this industry.
The fact of the matter is that some random attorney is not just going to randomly go over a company and give it a stamp of approval.
Somebody foot the bill, and when it comes to scams you can bet it was them.
The reason? So that their affiliates can run around citing “independent studies” by lawyers and claim the scheme is legal (despite a private attorney’s opinion being neither here nor there in the first place).
Please do not repost Karatbars affiliate spam and try to pass it off as fact.
Finally I’ll state on the record that the AMF warning was not generic, it was specifically directed at Karatbars. And trying to weasel behind affiliates not complaining?
Of course they won’t complain if new recruits are still joining the scheme and paying their commissions.
Your victims will only complain when recruitment dies off and they realize they’ve lost their money. This lawyer is making plays from scamming excuses 101.
The only facts that are relevant here is that Karatbars takes new affiliate funds and pays commissions on the recruitment of new affiliates. By all means address that, otherwise you’re wasting both our time.
I have looked into that report (Markus Ch. Nöring Rechtsanwalt / Lawyer). He’s too vague where he should have been clear and specific, e.g. about the warning from AMF Quebec.
Lawyers are usually much more specific than that. They don’t jump directly to their own opinions. Normal practice is to cite either the whole document or the relevant parts, and then analyse it.
A method like that is needed if they wish to communicate it to other professionals. Other professionals will not be interested in his “opinion”, they will be interested in how he came to his conclusion.
The first part of the AMF warning was rather specific, e.g. it mentioned investments and recruitment.
The warning also contained some “general warnings”. Markus Ch. Nöring seems to have looked solely on that general part, i.e. he didn’t actually address the real issue.
But we have got the point. Karatbars have paid a lawyer to write a positive review. They have also paid a few others, e.g. fraudandscam.com.
Alexa statistics for fraudandscam.com:
things must be slowing down at karatbars, look at the change in policy and the emphasis on purchasing.
On 4/24/15, at 7:19 AM, Harald Seiz has announced:
I can’t think of a legitimate reason to ignore KYC requirements… can you?
They’re still asking for them, but only after investments are made (watch them seize funds when KYC docs aren’t provided).
So why change the policy at all? Oh right, investment slows down when you ask for identification…
I have read though the comments of Oz vs. those who differ from Oz, and i have come to a very simple conclusion…in the end, it really doesn’t matter what opinion you have.
Whether based on fact, opinion, etc., in the end, we will do what we choose to do. Oz’s opinion will keep him from NOT getting involved; those with opposing opinion’s will remain/get involved with karate Bars (without Oz) getting in the way of their progress and success.
If it closes eventually (for whatever reason), yet those who paid money are left with real gold (they can later trade for paper money, save, etc.) good for them.
If it flourishes, even better for them – and Oz! I just think it’s pointless to try and convince the other when they aren’t dependant on your final decision!
The only gold that exists is when someone opts to convert their commission to gold. Then and only then is gold purchased, at the expense of the affiliate.
If Karatbars collapses, everyone with funds trapped in the system (including commissions not yet withdrawn) loses out.
You and your buddies ripp off those who joined after you, they lose their money. That’s how recruitment-based schemes like Karatbars work.
So the cards themselves are not worthless?
I always wondered why people use fear with this program in that they want to say the dollar is bad or about to collapse any day now.
So stock up with Karatbars fast.
Huh? Gold outside of commissions don’t exist? Let me check my storage ….(goes to look at the physical gold in possession) … Hmmmm…based on this statement, the gold I have in my hands is not existent. Wow! Thanks Oz!
And to think I carried samples to independent retail precious metal outlets to check for me, and they confirmed that it is in fact 24k LBMA certified gold and would buy them based on market price of the day.
I guess Oz knows better than these officially licensed gold dealers. What a waste of time, since they tested a non-existent product.
Actually, as a German company, KBI is regularly audited by the German government (unlike offshore companies who try to avoid audits).
They have to keep a listing of all customers including holdings in the storage vaults and have passed every audit imposed thus far.
In the unlikely event that Karatbars does in fact collapse, the government would ensure that all stored gold would be delivered to the customers, based on the KYC information, as part of the winding down operations.
What does gold in your “personal storage” have to do with the price of fish in China?
Karatbars International is not audited by the German government, cut the crap.
There is no gold unless affiliates request their commissions are paid out in gold. Those commissions are funds sourced from newly recruited affiliates.
Did you get dropped or something? Because you are giving an uneducated opinion. Due to you clearly stated you could not find all the information about karatbars… You may want to consider getting educated from someone who knows their facts. Cause you seem all kinds of stupid to me…
Also Harold Seiz DID NOT JOIN KARATBARS… HE CREATED IT..
Once again as many have mentioned above you don’t have to pay to play. IT’S FREE….
your behavior reminds me of a child who can’t get something through it’s head. Also you can get charged or sued for bashing someones business by giving out false information 🙂
“Thinking and acting at the highest level includes aspiration, straightforwardness, fairness and honesty. I guarantee that with my name”
– Harald Seiz
Who said he joined it? The review clearly states:
Token “free membership” pseudo-compliance is irrelevant when 99.9999% of commissions earned in Karatbars are by paid affiliates recruiting.
why would that be? it can’t be the case that most people are far smarter than you?
High level of thinking and acting = Why did you post that quote? 🙂
It didn’t exactly show any “highest level of thinking and acting”, neither for you nor him.
Oz…This is for you and the site listed the info on the tour links are the karatbars comp plan taken directly from their site.
You have some errors listed in your review which makes things more confusing than they are lol.
There are actually 5 packages but only 4 of which are main ones. The 5th is for people to buy their way into company profit sharing. You only list 3 each time but you do cover all 4 as right above the heading ‘world turnover bonus’ you list the 4th which is VIP.
They are bronze pkg. 99 euro cost
silver pkg. 283 euro
vip 1618 euro
The latter 3 have weird costs because of the value of the grams of gold in them fluctuating.
The unilevel level you talk about is for the free affiliates. They are called a distributor until they achieve 400 euro in sales (in other words at 0.5% commission have earned their first pay. $20. euro minimum.
As a free affiliate they can earn up to 6% commission from the total of all sales created by themselves and all affiliates they sign up, and their sub affiliates, and their sub affiliates etc etc.
Business members (package holders) can earn this as well by signing up free affiliates. The percentage is very low but doubles to 1% once a 1,000 euros in sales has been hit and is calculated from the retail price, not the mark up or profit portion.
The collector cards are the number 1 item they want all members to sell because they have the highest profit margins. So yes they are for retail as well.
Package commissions are dually based on the package you have as well as the package level you sell. In other words a bronze member selling a bronze pkg earns the least 5% of 99. euro, while a VIP member selling a VIP pkg would earn 20% of 1618. euro. Units earned vary as well.
I am just somebody trying to earn a living. I tell people if they have no intent to try and sponsor others to stick to the free affiliate side. And for those who who listen I also tell them about the other ways to buy gold.
Karatbars is a way someone with no money can earn gold by selling it. The other are ways to buy gold at different levels but each requires money for that.
Personally I think those who can afford it should own a bit of gold. But not held by karatbars or any bank.
Stuff a little bit in a box and bury it in your yard or somewhere hahaha. It’s not like it will ever become worthless and it won’t rot or rust away.
Germans are the number one gold buyers in the western world right now. Why? because they know what it’s like when suddenly your currency becomes worthless.
Anyway just some info if you want to make a few corrections in your review.
Re: #22 You lose me sometimes like with this:
Acquiring gold is income. And if a business member earns 200. or more in a given month they are then required to take 1 gram of gold and the balance in money if they so desire or they can buy more gold with it.
People, well those like me at least, joined to acquire gold in small denominations.
At one point I thought their pricing was ridiculous. But then I found even loftier prices of some gold bars and when you compare to some coins well…
I am a karatbars member. I bought a silver pkg. It comes with marketing material and a 1 gram gold karatbar so I have a sample.
Personally I do not see the need nor a reason to risk more money for a higher pkg as the gold content does not warrant them. Any business you start you have to pay for marketing materials, building a brand etc etc. So this small one time payment is no big deal.
Could this be called a ponzi scheme?? Yes, absolutely!!! But almost everything is.
(Ozedit: Offtopic waffle removed)
Is karatbars perfect? No way. But unless you go out placer mining (I have and it’s a riot) I can’t think of another way where you can acquire gold without buying it.
All a free affiliate needs to do is say to people, hey interested in buying gold, then check out this site. And hand them a link.
For business member side I personally fully believe this is network marketing/mlm. You are recruiting so how can it be anything but?
Funny thing though is most mlm’ers hate karatbars. Why, because there are no monthly fees. They like programs where everyone is on monthly auto purchases because that’s how they can quickly jack their earnings.
So karatbars is mlm that mlm’ers don’t like.
And if it’s classed as a ponzi scheme would go down in history as the worst one of all time because if it’s members all hold onto their karatbars gold, at some point in the future they will all earn a profit because sometime in the future gold will be worth a lot more than it is today!
Thanks for the clarifications Klaus.
But the money behind that gold is from new recruits. What gold exists is attributable only to the recruitment scheme.
That’s not a justification. A scam is a scam, period.
Well there’s got to be a better way other than recruiting new schmucks who then have to recruit new schmucks etc.
The perfect scam is one where participants don’t cash out. By stringing everyone along with imaginary gold Karatbars are pulling the ideal con.
1] you could win a gold prize
2] someone could gift you gold
3] you could dig your grand daddy’s teeth for gold
4] you could get lost and end up in a gold mine
but why is your heart set on getting gold for free?
if you want some product the safest, surest way is to buy it.
My comment #59 was not meant for posting eh. Just for your info that’s why I added the url so you could view the actual karatbars pkgs (in the tour). I know enough to know these blog’s do not allow url’s of any kind.
Well that’s just where are points of view differ. A scam to me (Ozedit: What you think a scam is is irrelevant. Recruitment schemes are scams, period. The only people who claim otherwise are scammers participating in such schemes.)
I removed the affiliate link referral URL. Do not try and be sneaky with your marketing, this isn’t the place for it.
Oz I had wrote that the entire post #59 was just for you and not meant to be posted. It was to show you corrections in the comp plan and commissions from what you had posted. And I put the link there for you only to verify the corrections in case you didn’t trust them.
I do not and would not want a link on a site talking scam. No need to post this one either as this is like an email to you since there is no email option.
“Contact” is right there in the menu line at the top of the page 🙂
The free is not for me. I paid and have a pkg. But unlike us there are many who cannot afford to buy a pkg. So for them there is the free affiliate option.
It starts out real low at .5% but they can realistically get that up to the 3% range if they work at it.
They can then use those earnings to buy gold with. Which would mean they earned it but did not need to outlay and cash.
Why would no one want 100 affiliates? I’d take them any day of the week. I tell people who say they don’t know if they can recruit to just take a free position.
Then if they do get someone just tell them not to buy a package before you do so you get your commissions. That way they are not risking anything.
But that .5% to 6% commissions in the unilevel you listed above are possible earnings for free affiliates. The higher the sales volume of your group of affiliates and their sub affiliates etc the higher your rank goes and the higher your commission percentage.
Free affiliates are out to just sell the 1, 2.5 or 5 gram karatbars or look for sub affiliates. They are not trying to sell packages.
hmmm, my bad, sorry.
The corrections have been noted. Link was removed because it was an affiliate site from memory.
I have yet to see anything official from Karatbars, leading me to suspect the profit sharing is some sort of Ponzi invetment scheme.
Affiliates by definition have bought into the comp plan. You missed the point entirely.
(Ozedit: Anything further not related to Karatbars will be marked as spam. If you wish to discuss the military and political parties do it elsewhere.)
Ok I see what you are saying. But I make my living online from affiliate programs. Selling stuff for companies whose products sell.
I do not pay 1 cent anywhere as an affiliate. With Karatbars they have an affiliate program and that is their free members who only sell. The people who bought pkgs like me are business members.
Now I dislike the karatbars site as I find it way to hard to find and understand stuff that is why I created my own.
I will need to go back and see if they reference affiliates as having paid and being package owners as well as the free members. If so I totally disagree with that as to me affiliate program term means free to join and no fees.
Hello and thank you for the review. This review seems to be posted in April 29, 2014 and outdated.
It would be great if you can update it with the most recent marketing plan because i learned a few things that were not part of your review which helped me make my decision to get started.
After my personal review, there are no purchase requirements to earn money (unlike what you said) and a free affiliate can earn in the unilevel and/or sell special cards to earn, not buy packages.
i think there is a timeline something like sell 3 special cards within yuor first 60 days? and earn a bronze pkg. there is a whole breakdown of other options too. cool!
i am now happy to join this more now that i had enough time to go through it it more detail. (Ozedit: recruitment spam removed)
How so? As far as I can tell it’s the same old recruitment scheme Karatbars have been pushing for years.
Sure there are. Whatever free options to join exist are pseudo-compliance.
Making peanuts != earning money in MLM.
Recruit three affiliates get a token reward… yeah nothing suss about that.
And best of luck to you then. Recruitment schemes like Karatbars will exist as long as new suckers continue to join them.
May your upline enjoy your money…
You would think people would actually do some research into the price of gold, and how expensive it is to acquire it via this model.
Take a few of those karatbars to a gold dealer and see how much they will buy it from you for. That would be a better indication of what it’s worth. Pawn shops and jewelry makers are the only people who will take it off your hands.
The value of a comic book is only what someone is willing to pay for it, not what the price guides say. You won’t be able to buy food, clothing or any other tangible object without government backed currency of some sort (at least on a regular basis).
@OZ there are now only packages available Bronze (not digital) Silver and Gold. V.I.P. exclusive package has been discontinued
Thanks for the update Raymond.
Like any home business referral or not you can loose money. Simply by getting a package giving it a go and then not making anything.
I would venture to guess over 70% of persons who enrolled in the business with a package are not making any kind of money to speak of if at all. I would be ecstatic if I could even make $200 per month.
Losing money in a recruitment-driven pyramid scheme is not representative of “any home business”.
Unfortunately that’s how pyramid schemes work. The majority lose money so that the select few make it.
At the expense of those you recruited? For shame.
I love reading your reviews on many MLM companies, i am always on here checking up to date on a lot of MLM and Matrix reviews. I love your stuff.
That being said, i noticed this is a earlier review of Karatbars and as an affiliate from them i just wanted to clean some stuff up for you if you’d like. Let me just say express that these are opinions of my own and not that of the company.
Karatbars international is actually registered as Ecommerce, not MLM, it does not use a binary system. (Ozedit: I’m going to cut you off there. Karatbars uses a binary compensation structure, making it an MLM company. Spare us your pseudo-compliance waffle.)
Oh i almost forgot, as i was saying, it is only a one time purchase you do not need to buy in annually or monthly or any of that sort, but the other good thing about this company is that if you buy a bronze package (the lowest one) and later on you would like to upgrade to a different package so you can get a higher commission pay out, Whatever package you want to upgrade to, you ONLY PAY THE DIFFERENCE and you receive the difference between the package you select. Another good thing, is if someone referred you, they will also receive the difference in commission they would be paid out if you had bought that package in the first place. 🙂
I love reading your reviews on many MLM companies, i am always on here checking up to date on a lot of MLM and Matrix reviews. I love your stuff.
That being said, i noticed this is a earlier review of Karatbars and as an affiliate from them i just wanted to clean some stuff up for you if you’d like. Let me just say express that these are opinions of my own and not that of the company.
Karatbars international is actually registered as Ecommerce, not MLM, it does not use a binary system. It is mostly based off volume of sale like all traditional business model.
I see you are a little confused on the levels and pay outs, perhaps i can clean some stuff up.
Since its earlier launch, like any business there was some flaws, it wasn’t til about late 2014 early 2015 that it actually revised and revamped.
To be an affiliate of karatbars it is absolutely free to join and start what is called a free gold savings account.
Many in the gold protection industry like me know that many companies will charge to store your gold, as a free affiliate, karatbars will store any gold you buy up to a year from the purchase date, free of charge before it needs to be shipped. Thus allowing you to buy grams at a time for those that cannot afford bulk, to pay a one time shipping fee to have all their gold sent to them in one run. Or if you like, you can buy a gram at a time and have them ship it via fedex to you right away but you are paying the same shipping cost – so why not store it for a bit?
Now a lot of people that are on here are probably US based, so yes, there are sites like JM bullion that ship for free, but that is only in the US. Karatbars never claims to be the cheapest per gram, but they do offer the highest trade/buy back rate than anywhere else if you need to convert it back to fiat money, also, there is only 3 companies that offer the security features karatbars does, and they do have one of the highest forms with their gold embeded heat sealed cards.
Now there is 7 ways to get paid, which is some of the break downs of the bronze, silver, gold supervisor/manager percentages, those are included with the free account. It will take time to achieve income because like i said it is based on volume of sales. The other way is a package..
Now those packages are also called, bronze, silver, gold and there is one more called VIP.
Buying a package does a few things, it unlocks the duel team cycle bonuses, and also allows you to profit off more volume of sales.
Let me explain – you are paid out higher commissions based off YOUR own package. If you are a bronze you get 5% as a silver 10% as a gold 15 % and VIP 20% off of all total sales in your org.
So if someone above me is a VIP and i am only a bronze, and someone under me buys gold, the VIP will get 20% commissions off the gold volume cycle pay outs, and i will only get 5%. You make as much as your package that you personally buy in to. So it is very fair in my opinion.
When someone buys a package, if you personally referred them, then you get a percentage of that package they bought, based on your own package. If you did not refer them you will not get any commissions off them buying a package. However, some packages have gold inside of them, and all packages have units, the units flow up to everyone equally. If someone 30 people in bought a package that has 5 units, and it had grams of gold that can range anywhere from 1 unit 2 units and 3 units depending on the size of the gram(s) They flow up to everyone in that line. All the way up to the very top. Again- everyone gets those units.
Now any time the system see’s a cycle pay out, meaning a total of 75 units, it can be 50 on the left side, 25 on the right side, for mlm terms this is your (Right leg, left leg example) vis-versa, it will pay out commission cycles. If you dont have one of your sides built up any units, then the units on the one side of you will just stack up and keep collecting until you start building your other leg, and it will start cycling every 75 unit combos. Depending on your personal package will determine how much you are paid out in those cycles. This is pretty fair in my opinion as well because i have been in MLM structures before like ACN and others. They run a binary system and with that, if one side is producing more, only one side becomes your pay out leg and you have to be on autoship most of the time, so you are your own best customer for products the company sells to stay a legal pyramid, and you need stay that way otherwise you lose your rank or commissions, which really sucks. Again, that is MLM. This is not.
With this, you do not needs to buy in annually, monthly, there are no auto ships, and its free to sign up. All you personally are doing is just converting a fiat currency that loses it’s purchasing power, for a more stable form – gold. Its like trading $1 for four quarters. You aren’t losing anything. Now yes that can change and there are nay sayers about gold and fiat currency, but thats just my opinion. I personally like protecting my wealth with precious metals in my portfolio.
Anyways, i hope that cleared some stuff up for you and to help with updating the review as well… Thank you for your great and honest work with your website and reviews. – A loyal reviewer.
Karatbars never claims to be the cheapest, however, only 3 companies offer the highest forms of security for the gold you buy to prove its authenticity.
So apples to apples, karatbars is fairly cheap. If you were to buy gold from sites like JM Bullion, they are in a plastic container, and stamped from different places, now lets say s*$@ hits the fan – you would have to pay $60 more just to have that gold re authenticated to prove it is of its weight class and purity, because for all someone else knows you are trying to give it to, it could be forged or tampered. So your $40 gram you bought now cost you $110 in the long run…
Take a few of those karatbars to a gold dealer and see how much they will buy it from you for.That would be a better indication of what it’s worth.Pawn shops and jewelry makers are the only people who will take it off your hands.
When it comes to jewelers, and gold jewelry, you pay more for the craftsmanship of the design, then you do for its actual weight, no one will get spot price, not you, not me, not anyone, so of course whatever you try to sell to a pawn shop they will low ball you because they need a turn around for gold.
However with karatbars they will offer you the highest buy back price for the gold you bought from them so you can get your fiat money back if needed. So there is no need to take it to a pawn or jewelry slump hole and get swindled.
The value of a comic book is only what someone is willing to pay for it, not what the price guides say.You won’t be able to buy food, clothing or any other tangible object without government backed currency of some sort (at least on a regular basis).
All government currency is backed by gold, just because it is taken off the gold standard does not mean anything, nations still settle their debt with gold. It is a market that is manipulated by governments so they can keep producing “comic book” money.
Soon hyper inflation will happen and it will happen fast – look what happened to zimbabwe a few years ago, Starving billionairs, just kept adding zeros on their money. And they german Marks after the world war. US has it worse because they are the Global Reserve Currency, so that means all nations peg their fiat money, to the us dollar.
If the dollar crashes, it will reap havoc all over the world. Gold can buy you the same stuff it could 20 years ago, if not more, because back then, your paper money had higher purchasing power, which as you can see has gone down, gas pries, bread, milk, clothes, all cost more dollars than before for the same products that have been watered down with planned obsolecence to deteriate faster to make consumers buy more.
Gold does not tarnish 🙂 and fun fact, there is only enough gold on earth to fill 3 olympic sized swimming pools, haha. Gold is currency my friend 🙂 it just hasnt been accepted yet.
I can take a lemon and stick a label on it that says, “Orange”, but it will still be a lemon.
I can assure you it is not, there is no “pay leg” or “flushing” in karatbars like MLM binary systems.
(Ozedit: Offtopic waffle removed)
C’mon now, you’re taking the piss, aren’t you ???
“Not MLM” then you go on to describe how KB works on multi levels.
You’re not very good at this, are you ???
Right. Because that’s the only characteristic of a binary compensation structure.
Mate you’re not going to get very far trying to convince people Karatbars isn’t an MLM company when they us an MLM compensation structure.
Give up while you’re behind.
M8, anything in life can be seen as MLM (Ozedit: False. Offtopic waffle removed, last warning.)
As I said, you’re not very good at this.
What you’ve described is an illegal pyramid or endless chain recruitment scheme.
The fact that KaratBars has no system in place to prevent recruitment being the main source of income by members only makes the situation worse.
KaratBars will undoubtedly attract the get-rich-quick crowd in the short term, but the minute the flow of new money stops, and it will, the KaratBars pyramid will collapse, taking the members’ money with it
What you’ve described is an illegal pyramid or endless chain recruitment scheme.
no what i described was ecommerce on a marketing scale. You should really do your homework on definitions.
Recruitment being the main source of income? you cant make any income unless you are personally referring people to buy gold or unless you buy a package, if you buy a package, you wont make any money unless you refer people that want to buy gold… if you dont have a package, and im referring people, you will get nothing.
no money, no units, so you are making nothing? how is that not preventing recruitment being the main source of income? You should really learn to read in more detail.
Take peoples money with it, money stopping? are you hearing yourself m8?
1. It cant take peoples money with it, they are paying for gold and the gold is being shipped to them in their physical possession. They have their money its converted to gold.
I doubt the “flow of money” will stop because as long as people are buying gold, they have fiat money to hand out as commissions.
If someone buys a package, there is like a 20/80 that the company keeps and pays out, so im sure they are pretty stable on that front line. Do you even know how business works m8? You need economics and business 101….
Recruitment commissions = pyramid scheme.
Recruiting affiliates and getting paid cash has nothing to do with buying gold.
What token amount of gold is shipped out is done so for marketing purposes. The overwhelming majority of commissions paid out in Karatbars are cash.
Shipping gold around the world is prohibitive cost-wise, so it’s all cash commissions (and no retail).
As long as recruited affiliates buy in, the same as any other pyramid scheme.
What you wrote is “word salad”… Random mix of buzzwords that has no commonly accepted definition.
Dear Mr. Behind MLM,
Character matters (Ozedit: have nothing to do with running a recruitment-driven scam. Offtopic spam removed.)
Here we are nearing 2017, this review composed April 2014, and Karatbars is still thriving. It has not been shut down by the FTC or SEC, and believe me these agencies are watching!
And it will continue to do so as long as new affiliate recruitment continues. That’s how pyramid schemes work.
Alexa traffic estimates meanwhile show a decline in 2016 before flatlining. That’s not healthy for a pyramid scheme.
Right. Except you’re clearly talking out of your ass.
Not so. The business packages also come with gold, so they are from the beginning practicing what is preached which is saving in gold.
This aside, whenever one reaches a certain level of commissions from purchases of any product, a certain part of that commission goes into the purchase of gold.
(Ozedit: Offtopic derail attempt removed)
Whatever token amount of gold is shipped is used for marketing. Yeah those stupid videos/photos “LOOK AT ME, I HAVE A SLIVER OF GOLD LOLZ!”
Meanwhile everything else is converted into money, with Karatbars affiliates paid to recruit new affiliates.
This makes it a pyramid scheme. And you can’t negate a pyramid scheme with token amounts of gold.
Which doesn’t exist, because an affiliate is paid cash (nobody in Karatbars receives a substantial amount of gold. It’s all money.)
PS. Do not post unsubstantiated marketing BS without verified sources.