LifePharm Global Review: Fibroblast Growth Factor capsules
LifePharm Global launched in 2011, with the company naming LifePharm Inc. as its parent.
LifePharm Global Network is a subsidiary of LifePharm, Inc., its parent company.
LifePharm, Inc. began back in 2001, focused on the business of developing, marketing and distributing premium, natural supplements in the retail sector across six countries.
LifePharm, Inc. was one of the first supplement companies in Asia to use popular celebrities to promote, endorse and build brand awareness.
With substantial businesses experience behind us as LifePharm, Inc. – plus an incredibly strong start and continued success with our direct marketing LifePharm Global Network company – we are poised to change the DNA of the industry.
LifePharm Global have a corporate office in the US state of California, but owing to their Asian heritage as part of LifePharm Inc., also maintain offices in Indonesia, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Heading up LifePharm Global is CEO is Wicky Suyanto (right).
Born in Indonesia but educated in the United States at Pepperdine University, Wicky Suyanto always had a keen eye for opportunity.
Following many successful retail ventures in Asia and winning several awards for branding and advertising, Wicky and his family moved to the US together to further their children’s education.
About the time his twin sons, Wickson and Winston, graduated from UCLA, Wicky was presented with studies on Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF) and knew it was an opportunity to develop a revolutionary product.
With a strong desire to give people an opportunity to create wealth and be in control of their own success, Wicky chose the channel of direct sales for the revolutionary product we know as Laminine.
Wicky, Wickson and, Winston opened LifePharm Global Network in 2011.
Prior to LifePharm Global, Suyanto appears to have been involved in Pendura Life Visions.
In 2010, a year prior to LifePharm Global starting up, Dr James Siripanich, a co-founder of Pendura wrote
Since the network marketing industry took off 50 years ago, companies have promised that the MLM is a business opportunity partnership, so I know what I mentioned so far to you is nothing new.
I had to ask myself, “Other companies have told people to simply believe in a partnership, how can Pendura make this tangible since the very beginning?”
This is when my friend and Pendura co-founder Wicky Suyanto approached me with the revolutionary idea of letting our distributors own company shares.
Pendura still has a website operational over at “penduralifevisions.com”, but the opportunity appears to be defunct.
Corporation Wiki shows a link between the two companies by way of Bernard Sjauta, who is credited as serving as President of both Pendura and LifePharm Global:
Sjauta is credited with being the CEO of LifePharm Global as late as December of 2012. In official LifePharm Global newsletters (dated as late as January 2013), Sjauta is also credited as a co-founder of the company:
I couldn’t find any updates following that newsletter, indicating that Sjauta possibly left the company in 2013. Why is a mystery as there’s no mention of it anywhere on the LifePharm Global website.
Sjauta’s absence from the LifePharm website and a lack of explanation of what led to Wicky Suyanto taking over as CEO is somewhat conspicuous.
In any event, read on for a full review of the LifePharm Global MLM business opportunity.
The LifePharm Global Product Line
LifePharm Global’s flagship product is Laminine. A dietary supplement, Laminine contains ‘Fibroblast Growth Factor’ (FGF), a naturally occurring ingredient that is ‘readily available in the human placenta‘.
On their website, LifePharm Global state that the availability of Fibroblast Growth Factor
diminishes over time and essentially vanishes as we age.
Our body is incapable of producing its own FGF, so it must derive it from the food supply.
To that end, LifePharm Global claim
Laminine is believed to be the only other known source of FGF in adults. LifePharm Global Network has exclusive rights to the unique blend of ingredients that are combined to become Laminine.
Research credits FGF with essentially reprogramming adult stem cells and amino acids in the body (which make up its natural repair tools) to travel to the areas that need it the most. Once there, these repair tools have the ability to integrate themselves with that particular body part.
Curiously, no specific research related to Laminine is cited or linked to on the LifePharm Global website.
Nonetheless, advertised “health benefits” of Laminine by LifePharm Global include
- stress and strain relief
- sleep & skin improvement
- energy & physical strength
- mental & emotional boost
Laminine is also available in an “Omega+++” variety, which adds Omega-3s, vitamin K2 and “CoQ10 ER” (an antioxidant) to the Laminine mix.
Unfortunately, LifePharm Global do not provide retail pricing for Laminine products on their website.
The company’s official compensation plan material however reveals that both Laminine and Laminine Omega+++ come in boxes that cost $43 retail. Each box contains 30 capsules of Laminine product.
The LifePharm Global Compensation Plan
The LifePharm Global compensation plan takes typical MLM compensation and mashes them together to form two distinctive hybrids, a unilevel/2-up and matrix/binary.
In addition to commissions paid out via these two hybrid structures, various cash and incentive performance bonuses are also offered.
Retail commissions are paid out on LifePharm Global products, with the commission payout equal to the difference between the retail and wholesale cost of the product.
In the LifePharm Global compensation plan the example provided is for a box of Laminine. Wholesale the cost is $33 and retail it’s $43. Thus the retail commission paid out is $10.
Fast Start Bonus
A Fast Start Bonus of 15% of the commissionable volume is paid on the first product order made by all recruited affiliates.
LifePharm Global’s Break-even Bonus pays a commission to affiliates everytime an affiliate in their downline purchases boxes of Laminine (excluding their first product order).
A flat $4 is paid out per box of Laminine ordered.
Note that the Break-even bonus also includes Laminine included with a newly recruited affiliate’s pack order, however these boxes ‘have different Break Even Bonus amounts assigned‘. No further clarification is provided in the LifePharm Global compensation plan.
The Break-even bonus is paid weekly and capped at $450 a month.
LifePharm Global Affiliate Membership Ranks
There are ten affiliate membership ranks in the LifePharm Global compensation plan. Along with their respective qualification criteria, they are as follows:
- Associate – recruit 2 affiliates and maintain 25 CV a month in personal sales volume and 50 GV in group sales volume
- Builder – recruit 3 affiliates and maintain 25 CV a month in personal sales volume and 100 GV in group sales volume
- Leader – recruit 6 affiliates or 2 Builder ranked affiliates, and maintain 25 CV a month in personal sales volume and 200 GV in group sales volume
- Premier – recruit 10 affiliates or 5 Builder ranked affiliates, and maintain 43 CV a month in personal sales volume and 300 GV in group sales volume
- Silver Director – generate 10,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 4000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 70 CV a month in personal sales volume
- Gold Director – generate 50,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 20,000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 100 CV a month in personal sales volume
- Platinum Director – generate 80,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 32,000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 100 CV a month in personal sales volume
- Titanium Director – generate 350,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 140,000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 100 CV a month in personal sales volume
- Diamond Director – generate 700,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 280,000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 100 CV a month in personal sales volume
- Royal Diamond Director – generate 1,500,000 GV a month in matrix volume (at least 600,000 GV from one side of the matrix), and maintain 100 CV a month in personal sales volume
Note that with the matrix volume requirements, where I’ve specified the minimum required from one matrix side, the remaining required volume must be generated from the other side.
Eg. If 10,000 monthly GV is required and 4000 GV has to come from one matrix side, the other side must generate at least 6000 GV to reach the quota. Any additional volume generated on the 4000 GV side is not counted.
Rank Advancement Bonus
LifePharm Global rewards affiliates for qualifying at certain affiliate membership ranks.
Starting with the Silver Director affiliate level, the Rank Achievement Bonuses awarded to affiliates are as follows:
- Silver Director – an “Executive Portfolio” (no explanation provided) and $1000
- Gold Director – “HDTV and laptop”, a “5 day cruise” and $3000
- Platinum Director – a $12,000 car bonus and $5000
- Titanium Director – a $65,000 car bonus
- Diamond Director – a Rolex watch, “Europe trip for 2” and $100,000
- Royal Diamond Director – a “20 day cruise for 4” and $500,000
Note that from the Gold Director rank, an affiliate is paid their cash bonus in monthly installments (40% and then three payments of 20%). An affiliate must maintain their rank for the duration of these additional three months in order to be paid the full cash bonus.
If an affiliate does not qualify for at least three months out of six (counted from their first payment), they forfeit any portion of the cash bonus that has not been paid out.
Residual commissions in LifePharm Global are paid out using a 2×12 matrix compensation structure.
A 2×12 matrix compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of matrix, with two positions directly under them (level 1):
In turn, these two positions branch out into another two positions each (level 2) and so on and so forth down a total of twelve levels.
Positions in the matrix are filled via the recruitment of new affiliates, either directly or via the recruitment efforts of an affiliate’s up and downlines.
Commissions are paid out as a percentage of the sales volume generated in an affiliate’s matrix. How much of a percentage is paid out is determined by the level of the matrix the sales volume falls on:
- levels 1 and 2 – 2%
- level 3 – 3%
- levels 4 to 11 – 4%
- level 12 – 3%
Note that affiliates must qualify to earn on all twelve levels of the matrix, with level qualification tied to an affiliate’s membership rank:
- Associate – levels 1 to 7
- Builder – levels 1 to 10
- Leader – levels 1 to 11
- Premier – all 12 available matrix levels
Matrix Match Bonus
The Matrix Match Bonus pays out a matching percentage of matrix commissions earnt by an affiliates first two personally recruited affiliates.
How much of a percentage match is paid out is determined by a LifePharm Global affiliate’s membership rank:
- Associate – 15%
- Builder or higher – 20%
The Coded Bonus is the second of LifePharm Global’s residual commissions and is paid using a unilevel compensation structure.
A unilevel compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of an affiliate team, with every personally recruited affiliate placed directly under them (level 1):
Commissions are paid out after an affiliate has recruited two affiliates.
From the third recruited affiliate on level 1, a LifePharm Global affiliate is then able to earn a percentage of the sales volume generated by every personally recruited affiliate, their first two recruited affiliates, their first two recruited affiliates and so on and so forth down a theoretical infinite number of levels.
How much of a commission percentage is paid out is determined by an affiliate’s membership rank:
- Builder – 2%
- Leader – 6%
- Premier – 10%
Note that due to the first two recruited affiliates in the unilevel being passed up, the Coded Bonus is not payable to Associate level affiliates.
Coded Matching Bonus
The Coded Matching Bonus pays out a matching bonus on the sales volume generated from their third recruited affiliate.
The easiest way to explain how the bonus is paid out is to think of every downline having a third recruited affiliate. From this affiliate, the bonus is paid.
No bonus is paid out on an affiliates first two recruited affiliates, nor is it paid out on the third directly. However once the third recruited affiliates (and subsequent recruited affiliates) recruit their third affiliate, the bonus is paid on their downline.
The first two affiliates recruited by the third affiliate don’t pay out directly, but the bonus kicks in on their third recruited affiliate.
To better illustrate how this works I’ve included the diagram LifePharm Global use to illustrate the Coded Matching Bonus (orange represents positions the bonus is paid out on):
Each individual recruitment leg in the unilevel is treated independently of the others, paying out down a total of five generations.
LifePharm Global define a unilevel generation from every 3rd recruited affiliate. Once three affiliates are recruited that particular unilevel leg begins a new generation (note that affiliates who are placed in the same generation have no effect on other affiliates placed in the same generation).
How much of a commission is paid out via the Coded Matching Bonus is determined both by the generation sales volume is generated on, as well as an affiliate’s membership rank:
- Builder – 15% on the first generation and 5% on the second
- Leader – 15% on the first generation and 10% on the second
- Premier – 15% on the first generation, 10% on the second to fourth generations and 5% on the fifth
The Leadership Bonus pays out an additional 2%-5% bonus on the sales volume generated by an affiliate’s downline.
To qualify for the bonus, a LifePharm affiliate must have a downline generating at least 20,000 a month in group volume (GV) and be at the Leader, Builder or Premier affiliate rank.
If this qualification criteria is met, Leader and Builder ranked affiliates are paid 2% and Premier affiliates 5%.
Note that once any given unilevel leg reaches 20,000 GV a month, sales volume is no longer paid out via the Leadership Bonus.
Leadership Match Bonus
The Leadership Match Bonus serves as an interim bonus between an affiliate having one unilevel leg generating 20,000 GV a month and waiting for a second leg to achieve the same.
If an affiliate has one unilevel leg generating 20,000 GV a month, it “breaks away” from the Leadership Bonus. This means that volume generated in the leg is not paid out via the Leadership Bonus.
Instead, a 100% matching bonus is triggered on the Leadership Bonus earnings of an affiliate’s second highest sales volume generating unilevel leg.
Note that once a LifePharm Global affiliate has two unilevel legs generating at least 20,000 GV a month, the Global Matching Bonus becomes redundant and is not paid out on.
Global Pool Bonus
The Global Pool Bonus is made up of 3% of LifePharm Global’s global sales volume, and is paid out to affiliates via shares.
When an affiliate has two unilevel legs each generating 20,000 GV a month, payments via the Leadership Match Bonus cease and instead they are given two shares in the Global Pool.
Affiliates can earn additional shares in the pool, with one share awarded per additional unilevel leg an affiliate has that generates at least 20,000 GV a month in sales volume.
Note that an affiliate must maintain a minimum monthly 70 CV product order (2 boxes of Laminine) in order to qualify for the Global Pool Bonus.
Joining LifePharm Global
The LifePharm Global compensation plan material states:
There is no personal purchase of product necessary to be an LPGN IBO.
Start your OWN LPGN business by purchasing the $29.95 Business Success Starter Kit.
The LifePharm Global IBO sign-up form doesn’t appear to have this option though:
The $29.95 no product option doesn’t appear anywhere on the form, which instead requires affiliates to purchase a “pack” ranging in price from $99 (Activation Pack) to $1399 (Career Pack).
My first impression upon reading about LifePharm Global’s Laminine product was “ew, placentas? No thanks.”
Regardless of the purported health benefits (none of which are FDA approved or evaluated), you’re not going to get me taking a daily placenta supplement.
Thankfully LifePharm’s Laminine isn’t made out of harvested placentas, but rather fertilized bird eggs. As the Laminine product brochure explains,
As far back as 1929, a Medical Doctor in Canada discovered a way to extract the ‘life-essence’ of a nine day old fertilized avian egg. Through research, it was found that on exactly the ninth day, all the ingredients necessary to create life are at its’ highest level.
In fact, the life-giving proteins are so potent at this stage that a live chick is hatched a mere two weeks thereafter. This method of extraction and freeze-drying processes proved to be a historical monumental success for this Medical Doctor’s patients.
Unfortunately this revolutionary breakthrough discovery died when the doctor died.
Some 50 years later this extraction and freeze drying technique was rediscovered by Norwegian Scientists. Since then the processes have been patented and the amount of clinical studies and research that followed it has yielded nothing less than stunning results.
Mmm, fertilized bird eggs. Giggidy.
Simply put, I think this is likely to be the biggest hurdle in marketing Laminine to prospective customers. Namely, the question of why do I as an adult human need freeze-dried baby bird egg extract to be healthy.
LifePharm openly acknowledge that as adults, ‘our body is incapable of producing its own FGF, so it must derive it from the food supply’. As such, shouldn’t a balanced diet suffice?
I mean, with this all being purportedly proprietary and such, it’s not like a doctor anywhere on the planet is going to prescribe Laminine for anything. So why do I need to be taking it again?
Taken from the Wikipedia entry on Fibroblast Growth Factor,
FGF is critical during normal development of both vertebrates and invertebrates and any irregularities in their function leads to a range of developmental defects.
Sure Baby bird and humans might need this stuff, but again – why as a fully developed adult do I need my daily dose of fertilized egg gunk?
And as I noted in the “product” section of this review, despite LifePharm Global citing “clinical studies and research… yielded nothing less than stunning results”, none are cited or provided on their website.
The recent $3.5 million FDA fine the FDA issued Trivita comes to mind.
With the apparent lack of specific health benefits associated with the taking of Laminine in mind, that brings us to the compensation plan.
Prefacing the actual plan, LifePharm Global state
In creating this Compensation Plan, we did not hire a specialist or consultant who naturally tends to create a plan beneficial to the company.
Instead, we sat down with various networking business leaders from the US and various countries such as yourselves and let ‘you’ have a free reign on creating what would be a money making plan entirely from your point of view.
And it shows.
What they’ve created is a sort of matrix hybrid crossed with a binary (nobody talks about “matrix legs”, that’s binary talk. And the unilevel is somewhat confusing too, what with the splicing of 2-up mechanics into what is otherwise a standard unilevel.
Dollar for dollar whether this is actually advantageous or not to the affiliate I have no idea. But it certainly failed the headache test.
In analysing the LifePharm Global compensation plan, things were going well until I tried to get my head around the way they define unilevel generations. Things got worse when I reached the Coded Matching Bonus, Leadership Bonus, Leadership Match bonus and Global Pool Bonus.
In reality these are all stepping-stones of the same bonus, just paid out differently. Having components of the bonus temporarily unlock and then lock again though is just confusing.
Surely there’s a better way to have implemented what they wanted?
Here I might provide an alternative but to be honest I’m still not entirely sure what’s so advantageous of deploying the plan in the manner they have. Certainly not enough so to warrant trying to get my head around it further and coming up with a favorable alternative.
It’s sort of like developing a 5-wheel car and then not explaining the functionality (read: advantages) of having the fifth wheel.
LifePharm Global mangle your typical MLM compensation structures but then fail to explain how or even if these changes are beneficial over a standard matrix/unilevel hybrid.
There was also enough chain-recruitment autoship elements in the compensation plan to warrant concern too.
Starting off with the Break-even bonus, affiliates are paid to recruit new affiliates – and get paid as long as recruited affiliates continue to buy product. The purchasing of product in itself isn’t a bad thing, but bearing in mind the problematic nature of marketing Laminine – and things get murky.
At $4 a box this might seem like nothing to worry about, but when you consider a downline might be buying hundreds of boxes of Laminine each month, and that sales volume from these sales is also pumped in the matrix and unilevel commissions – the bigger picture isn’t all that reassuring.
Especially when this is how LifePharm Global define “active” affiliate status and monthly autoships:
(An) IBO is considered to be “active” if he/she has placed an order within the last 30 days.
Auto-Delivery is a standing order that is to be processed on the same day of each month. IBOs are encouraged to be on Auto-Delivery so that they are never out of product and always remain Active.
So I obviously need to be active to qualify for commissions, and the company tells me the easiest way to remain active is to sign up for autoship? Hmm.
I’m really not feeling the retail viability with this one. And not having the price of Laminine readily available on the LifePharm Global website certainly doesn’t help.
I mean, you can’t even use the competitive defense here. This stuff is supposed to be proprietary right? So why on Earth wouldn’t you just provide the price of Laminine right there on the product page?
Typically in these situations where I’m not convinced retail is a focus, I’d recommend a prospective affiliate inquire with their upline as to what their retail sales volume is versus that of recruited affiliates (and also check that this isn’t all just autoship volume).
Whilst the above is still what I’d do as a prospective affiliate, I’d also take the added step of trying out Laminine for a few months. I’m still not entirely sure why anyone needs to pump themselves full of Fibroblast Growth Factor, and if a few months of using the product doesn’t reveal to you why – what are you going to answer with when your customers ask the same question?
All in all? Approach with caution. There’s nothing overtly dodgy with LifePharm Global but, fertilized bird eggs or otherwise, post-analysis reflection of LifePharm Global didn’t exactly leave me with the most pleasant of aftertastes.