speak-asia-online-logoNews trickled in overnight that problem plagued MLM firm Speak Asia has had its bank accounts frozen in both Singapore and India.

In Singapore, the United Overseas Bank (UOB) froze and informed Speak Asia that they were  ‘unable to continue maintaining the… accounts you have with us’.

Additionally it has been reported that bank accounts in India belonging to Speak Asia’s ‘Indian agents’ have also been frozen pending regulatory action.

The end result? Speak Asia are currently unable to process payments to their panelists.

As what appears to be the beginning of the end looms over Speak Asia, you’d think the company directors would see the writing on the wall and just cut their losses and run.

Rather, it seems Speak Asia and its directors are going to see this through to the bitter end, extracting every last dollar they can out of the gullible still signing up to the company.

Well, at least that’s the impression you’d get from Speak Asia’s public response to the account closures. Speak Asia flat out deny the accounts were ever frozen.

In a statement released to the public, Speak Asia allege that the bank account closures were merely the company shifting its assets.

Our bank account in Singapore has not been frozen… we are only moving our company account to another bank.

We are approaching and evaluating various other banks in Singapore from where we will soon be able to disburse the payments to all panelists.

Riiiight. Because having your bank inform you that you’re having your account closed with a 48 hour deadline is perfectly normal business practice.

Interestingly, the prepared public statement from Speak Asia directly contradicts the acknowledgement that their accounts were closed by Harendar Kaur, Speak Asia Chairperson.

In an open letter to Speak Asia supporters published on Speak Asia’s website, Kaur admits that

some banks have temporarily frozen accounts of our India based agents.

Due to the media noise, on (the) 25th of May UOB Bank in Singapore has also pressed us for closure of our 2 Bank accounts within 2 days.

As for a resolution, Kaur warns that it could be up to two months away;

Please note, in order to set up a seamless International Banking Gateway like the one at UOB Bank, takes at least 6 to 8 weeks.

Whilst there appears nothing that Speak Asia can do in regard to UOB closing Speak Asia’s Singapore based bank accounts, in response to their Indian bank account being closed Speak Asia are threatening to take the Indian government and banks responsible to the Supreme Court.

I’m sure taking the Indian government to court will work out wonders for them.

Interestingly in her open letter to supporters, Kaur credits herself as the CEO of Speak Asia, leaving me wondering who is really incharge. Manoj Kumar was appointed CEO of Speak Asia on May 15th, yet clearly Harendar Kaur sees herself as the CEO too.

No doubt this confusion is being deliberately planted by Speak Asia so as to create confusion over who to go after should things get worse.

Meanwhile the crux of Speak Asia’s argument appears to be that it’s the media attention that is the sole cause of all the attacks against them.

Kaur claims that

this has been a most disrupting experience for us ALL and we are MOST concerned about the disruption to your bank accounts and/or finances, that these actions prompted by the malicious media activity, thereby forcing the authorities have caused to us.

What she doesn’t seem to get (or does get but is desperately trying to detract attention from), is that the media attention first arose due to the business model of Speak Asia itself.

It’s a hard fact that by conducting surveys, Speak Asia panelists are only able to make $7-$20 a week. No more, no less.

The real money in Speak Asia is solely derived from the recruitment of others and whether they fill out surveys or not is irrelevant. So long as new members pay their joining fees and then go out and recruit other new members, everyone gets paid.

This, and this alone is the only reason Speak Asia are facing regulatory action from five Indian departments and have had their Singapore and Indian based bank accounts frozen.

Finally Kaur ends her open letter by calling for a media blackout by Speak Asia members and supports. Kaur urges

Please DO NOT pay attention to any other sources of Dis – information, which are designed to mislead and upset you and your families.

The entire company and its management is HERE TO STAY and are fighting, for our Panellists, Staff and Vendors and their families.

Clearly the intention here is to position Speak Asia and it’s members as collective victims. Whilst the company doesn’t have a leg to stand on in defending it’s pyramid scheme business model, things get a whole lot more complicated when you drag in millions of members life savings into the equation.

With millions of dollars on the line, the last thing you want are for your members to get out there and educate themselves on what is really going on and at stake here.

The hard lesson a lot of members of the Indian public are going to soon learn however is that no matter how much flowery and emotional language a company uses, a scam is still a scam. Even if Speak Asia somehow escape prosecution following all the investigations currently laid out against them, the fact remains that their recruitment driven business model is in no shape or form sustainable in the longterm.

A fact Speak Asia has conveniently refused to publicly address or even acknowledge.