Rain International Review: Black cumin seed drink
Rain International launched around 2009 and lists several global office locations on its website, with its US office located in the state of Utah.
Heading up Rain International is Founder and President, Byron Belka.
Widely known as a successful top distributor in the industry, Byron brings over ten years of field experience to the Rain International corporate team.
At the prodigious age of 28, Byron reached top commission level with his first direct sales company and has remained in the industry’s elite class ever since.
Belka (right) initially worked in the mortgage industry before switching over to MLM. Company wise his most recent venture as an affiliate before Rain was eXfuze (multi-botanical beverages), having joined around 2008 I believe.
Prior to Exfuze, Belka was a distributor of Nu Skin. I’m not sure when he joined the company but Belka was credited as a “top 20 Bonus Pool Earner” back in 2003.
Both of these associations appear to have been restricted to an affiliate role, with Belka not entering the executive management side of things until he signed on as Rain International’s Executive Vice-President of Global Sales and Marketing back in August 2011.
I’m a little confused as to how Byron Belka is credited as a founder of Rain International, as he appears to have come on board long after its establishment.
Adding a bit more confusion to the mix that same year (2011), Rain International bought out a company called Rain Nutrition, who at the time were marketing what appears to be Rain International’s product line today.
According to a press-release Rain International put out in late 2011,
Rain International partnered with Rain Nutrition in 2010. Since that time, Rain Nutrition’s proprietary research on seed nutrition supported Rain International’s efforts.
The acquisition will further enhance Rain International’s position as a leader in the seed nutrition industry by bringing Rain Nutrition, a company based on many years of seed research, in house.
“This announcement is a huge milestone in the history of Rain International,” said Executive Vice President, Byron Belka. “This announcement dispels the buzz regarding the acquisition of Rain Nutrition by another MLM company.
We are alive and well, ready to grow globally and are excited to partner with people all over the world. Additionally, this purchase allows Rain International to open its doors to the North American markets giving us the opportunity to accelerate the growth of Rain International locally like we are doing in our other markets around the world.”
Read on for full review of the Rain International MLM business opportunity as it operates today.
The Rain International Product Line
Rain International’s flagship product is called “Soul”, and is
2 ounces of ready-to-drink goodness in a convenient, take-anywhere sachet.
This proprietary blend of black cumin seed, raspberry seed, grape seed, and D-ribose offers a punch of powerful nutrition.
Rain International claim that their Soul beverage offers
- antioxidant protection
- cardiovascular support
- a boost to immune function
- reduced inflammation
- improved mental clarity and focus and
- greater endurance
The Rain International Compensation Plan
The Rain International Compensation Plan is mostly sales volume based, paying affiliates primarily on the volume generated via retail orders (preferred customers) and that of their recruited downline.
Rain International themselves don’t offer affiliates retail commissions, but instead require them to
purchase products at the distributor wholesale cost and sell them at the suggested retail price.
As such there’s no specific retail commission offered (customers pay Rain affiliates directly), with the company stressing that
the amount earned is dependent upon what price you sell the product for.
Preferred Customer Commissions
Preferred Customers buy a preset amount of Soul product each month, sold by the box.
Each box of Soul sold to preferred customers for $40 (20 pouches) generates a $10 commission.
Affiliate Membership Ranks
There are eleven affiliate membership ranks within the Rain International compensation plan and, along with their respective qualification criteria, they are as follows:
- Rain Associate – 50 PV a month
- Manager – 50 PV a month and at least 300 GV generated by your lesser binary leg
- Senior Manager – 50 PV a month and at least 700 GV generated by your lesser binary leg
- Bronze Executive – 100 PV a month, at least 1500 GV generated by your lesser binary leg and at least one personally recruited Manager ranked affiliate
- Silver Executive – 100 PV a month, at least 3000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg and at least two personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Gold Executive – 100 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg and at least three personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Platinum Elite – 200 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg, at least 10,000 GV from your entire downline (no more than 5000 from any individual recruitment leg) and at least four personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Pearl Elite – 200 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg, at least 15,000 GV from your entire downline for two consecutive weeks (no more than 7500 from any individual recruitment leg) and at least five personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Sapphire Elite – 200 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg, at least 20,000 GV from your entire downline for three consecutive weeks (no more than 10,000 from any individual recruitment leg) and at least six personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Diamond Elite – 200 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg, at least 25,000 GV from your entire downline for four consecutive weeks (no more than 12,500 from any individual recruitment leg) and at least seven personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
- Black Rain Diamond – 200 PV a month, at least 5000 GV generated by your lesser binary leg, at least 75,000 GV from your entire downline for four consecutive weeks (no more than 25,000 from any individual recruitment leg) and at least seven personally recruited Manager ranked affiliates
Note that for PV qualification, a $40 order for a box of Soul generates 20 PV.
First Order Bonus
When a Rain International affiliate recruits a new affiliate, they earn a commission when affiliate chooses a business centre pack.
There are two commissionable packs to that pay out a First Order Bonus:
- Business Builder Pack – $30
- Professional Pack – $90
The upline of an affiliate qualifying for a First Order Bonus also receives a match on the commission:
- Business Builder Pack – $10
- Professional Pack – $30
Residual commission in Rain International are paid out to affiliates via a binary compensation structure.
A binary compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of the structure, with two legs directly under them.
These two legs form the start of two sides and in turn branch out into an additional two new legs each, which continues down a theoretically infinite number of levels.
Commissions are paid out based on the volume generated by both sides of the binary, with Rain International affiliates being paid 10% of the team sales volume (GV) generated by their lesser binary side.
Note that in order to qualify for residual binary commissions, a Rain International affiliate must be generating a minimum 300 GV in their weaker binary side and be of the Manager affiliate membership rank.
A maximum of $10,000 in residual binary commissions is payable per affiliate business center, with how much an affiliate can earn determined by their membership rank:
- Bronze Executive – $1500 a week
- Silver Executive – $2000 a week
- Gold Executive – $4000 a week
- Platinum Elite – $6000 a week
- Pearl Elite – $8000 a week
- Sapphire Elite or above – $10,000 a week
Residual Commissions Generation Match
The Residual Commissions Generation Match allows an affiliate to earn a percentage match on the binary commission earnings of their personally recruited downlines.
This is tracked via generations, with each personally independently recruited affiliate starting a new recruitment leg that is tracked independently of the rest.
In each recruitment leg a generation is defined by the presence of a Bronze Executive ranked affiliate. Where one is found, every affiliate between the Bronze Executive affiliate and another Bronze Executive (or affiliate qualifying for the Generation Match if it’s the first generation) counts as a generation.
Up to seven generations are able to be paid out on, with how many generations a Rain International affiliate earns on dependent on their affiliate membership rank:
- Bronze Executive – 1 generation
- Silver Executive – 2 generations
- Gold Executive – 3 generations
- Platinum Elite – 4 generations
- Pearl Elite – 5 generations
- Sapphire Elite – 6 generations
- Diamond Elite and Rain – 7 generations
Each week Rain International set aside 3% of the global commissionable volume, which is then paid back to affiliates via Leadership Bonus pools.
There are two pools affiliates can qualify for, the Builders Bonus Pool (70% of 3%) and the Executive Bonus Pool (30% of 3%).
Shares in each pool are awarded based on an affiliate’s membership rank as follows:
- Builders Bonus Pool – Managers receive 1 share, Senior Managers receive 2 shares and Bronze Executives receive 3 shares
- Executive Bonus Pool – Silver Executives receive 1 share, Gold Executives receive 1 share and Platinum Elites receive 3 shares
The Lifestyle Bonus is paid out monthly to affiliates who maintain at least 200 PV each month and one of the following affiliate membership ranks for at least four consecutive months:
- Pearl – $750
- Sapphire – $1000
- Diamond – $1500
Joining Rain International
Affiliate membership to Rain International required the purchase of a Business Package, with four available packages to choose from:
- Business Builder – $249 (1 Business Center)
- Professional Builder – $599 (3 Business Centers)
- Rain Elite – $919 (1 Business Center, includes 6 months of autoship)
- Super Elite – $1259 (3 Business Centers, includes 6 months of autoship)
As I see it Rain International is geared to operate more as a buying club than a retail sales orientated MLM company.
On the retail side of things the only true retail offering is the preferred customer program, which demands a monthly minimum spend of participants.
Rain International’s defined retail commissions in their compensation plan are nothing such, with affiliates, not customers, paying the company for product (what affiliates do after that with purchased product has no bearing on company sales).
On the affiliate side of things, based on the package options presented to all new affiliates, there’s a strong encouragement to self-qualify one self for commissions via monthly autoship (self-purchase of products).
Naturally this follows on in the recruitment side of things, with the Rain International compensation plan obviously geared towards the recruitment of new affiliates and their signing up for a monthly minimum autoship order.
Recruit enough affiliates and (required to progress up the affiliate membership ranks) and eventually the monthly autoship volume will qualify an affiliate for promotion.
As an affiliate gains membership rank, the company then mandates they themselves generate more personal volume a month, which is probably going to equate to a higher autoship order, offset by an increase in earned commissions and simultaneously helping their upline reach their set PV target.
Given of course that all of the above still ultimately revolves around the sale of products, inherently there’s nothing wrong with it – until you introduce the MLM side of the business. Where upon the lack of focus on retail sales becomes obvious.
An MLM company that primarily generates revenue from affiliate purchase of product functions effectively as a pyramid scheme.
A question mark does loom over Rain International in this regard (I couldn’t see any retail figures anywhere on the Rain International website), however given how the compensation plan is geared, I’m not convinced retail volume exists in any significant numbers.
This can be evaluated individually by prospective affiliates by enquiring with their potential uplines as to how much of their personal volume is generated by preferred customer orders, and how much is generated by recruited affiliates.
Finally I’ll also add that having affiliates purchase multiple business centers, which directly affects their earnings if they reach the income caps set, is indicative of a compensation plan that is lacking in the long-term.
I’m not a fan of affiliates requiring multiple positions, even when they are awarded based on sales volume, here you have affiliates literally purchasing said positions and that’s even worse.
All in all these shortcomings are a bit of a shame as Rain International definitely has a retailable product that, if a market can be found for by an affiliate, is still ultimately and unfortunately let down via the company’s compensation plan.
That’s not to say that an affiliate can’t work the compensation plan and generate a healthy mix of preferred customer and recruited affiliate orders, just that given how the plan it’s structured and how affiliates sign up to the company, I’d conclude that it’s inherently unlikely to happen.