Onyx Lifestyle Review: LQD8 Block investment BTC securities fraud
Onyx Lifestyle provides no information about who owns or runs the company on their website.
The Onyx Lifestyle website (“onyxlifestyle.com”) was initially registered in 2016. Through the WayBack Machine, I was able to confirm that up until late 2018 at least, the Onyx Lifestyle domain was available for sale.
The Onyx Lifestyle domain registration was last updated on March 27th, 2019, suggesting this is when the current owner(s) took possession of it.
Currently the Onyx Lifestyle domain registration is private and provides no information about its owner.
On page two of Onyx Lifestyle’s marketing overview document, the company names and quotes Clif Braun (right) as a co-founder.
On his LinkedIn profile, Braun (aka Clifton Braun) confirms his status as an Onyx Lifestyle co-founder from February 2019.
Five years ago Braun was promoting Vemma as a Presidential Brand Partner.
The FTC shut Vemma down for being a $200 million dollar pyramid scheme in 2015.
In 2017 Braun joined Wealth Generators as a Master Field Trainer.
Upon learning of the CFTC investigation, Investview renamed Wealth Generators to Kuvera Global.
Braun continued to promote Kuvera Global but at some point ditched the company.
Up until recently Braun was promoting Liv, a “global lifestyle company” launched by Visalus co-founders Nick Sarnicola and Blake Mallen.
I wasn’t able to ascertain who Onyx Lifestyle’s other co-founders are, but did come across this photo from Braun’s Facebook feed (click to enlarge):
Travis Bott in particular stands out, owing to his connection to Investview and Wealth Generators.
As always, if an MLM company is not openly upfront about who is running or owns it, think long and hard about joining and/or handing over any money.
Onyx Lifestyle Products
Onyx Lifestyle has no retailable products or services, with affiliates only able to market Onyx Lifestyle affiliate membership itself.
Onyx Lifestyle affiliates are given access to banking services and “luxury lifestyle services”.
Providers of services Onyx Lifestyle gives affiliates access to is not disclosed.
The Onyx Lifestyle Compensation Plan
Onyx Lifestyle affiliates invest bitcoin on the promise of a 120% ROI after twelve months.
Onyx Lifestyle investment is tracked through LQD8 Block positions.
How many LQD8 Block positions an Onyx Lifestyle affiliate can invest in is determined by how much they spend in affiliate fees.
- Feature ($299) – able to invest in up to 100 active LQD8 Block positions, max annual ROI capped at $10,000 and 2% withdrawal fee
- Preferred ($799) – able to invest in up to 250 active LQD8 Block positions, max annual ROI capped at $50,000 and 1.5% withdrawal fee
- Elite ($1499) – able to invest in up to 500 active LQD8 Block positions, max annual ROI capped at $100,000 and 1% withdrawal fee
- Black ($10,000) – able to invest in up to 2500 active LQD8 Block positions, max annual ROI capped at $2,000,000 and 0.5% withdrawal fee
- Reserve ($50,000) – able to invest in up to 10,000 active LQD8 Block positions, no ROI cap or withdrawal fees
Each LQD8 Block position costs $70 in bitcoin, $20 of which is an admin fee.
The 10% monthly return is paid only on the $50 investment.
Onyx Lifestyle affiliates are paid 15% of membership fees paid by personally recruited affiliates.
Onyx Lifestyle pays residual commissions via a binary compensation structure.
A binary compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of a binary team, split into two sides (left and right):
The first level of the binary team houses two positions. The second level of the binary team is generated by splitting these first two positions into another two positions each (4 positions).
Subsequent levels of the binary team are generated as required, with each new level housing twice as many positions as the previous level.
Positions in the binary team are filled via direct and indirect recruitment of affiliates. Note there is no limit to how deep a binary team can grow.
At the end of each day Onyx Lifestyle tallies up new membership fee and investment volume on both sides of the binary team.
Affiliate membership volume is calculated at 50% of unspecified sales volume membership fees generate.
Investment volume is calculated at $20 of every $70 invested in LQD8 Block positions.
Onyx Lifestyle affiliates are paid 10% of matched volume.
Volume that is paid out on is flushed, with any leftover volume on the stronger binary team side carried over.
Onyx Lifestyle pay a Matching Bonus on downline residual commissions.
The Matching Bonus is tracked through a unilevel compensation structure.
A unilevel compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of a unilevel team, with every personally recruited affiliate placed directly under them (level 1):
If any level 1 affiliates recruit new affiliates, they are placed on level 2 of the original affiliate’s unilevel team.
If any level 2 affiliates recruit new affiliates, they are placed on level 3 and so on and so forth down a theoretical infinite number of levels.
Using this unilevel team structure, Onyx Lifestyle pay a Matching Bonus on up to seven generations in each unilevel team leg.
Onyx Lifestyle defines a generation in a leg when an Executive or higher ranked affiliate is found.
This affiliate caps off the first generation for that leg, with the second beginning immediately after.
If no second Executive or higher ranked affiliate is found, the second generation of the leg extends down the full depth of the leg.
If a second Executive or higher ranked affiliate exists, they cap off the second generation and the third begins after them.
Using this generation structure, an Onyx Lifestyle affiliate can earn a Matching Bonus on up to seven generations per unilevel team leg.
Note that Onyx Lifestyle do not provide rank qualification criteria in their compensation plan.
Global Bonus Pool
Onyx Lifestyle take 10% of company-wide volume and place it into ten separate Global Bonus Pools.
Affiliates qualify for shares in these pools based on rank.
From the National Director rank, shares earned in the upper five pools are retained as affiliates progress in rank towards Global Ambassador.
Again, note that Onyx Lifestyle do not provide rank qualification criteria in their compensation plan.
Joining Onyx Lifestyle
Onyx Lifestyle affiliate membership is $99 or $199 annually depending on where you live.
Participation in the attached income opportunity is another $299 to $50,000 and then $38 a month.
Additional investment in LQD8 Block positions is $50 a position.
The more an affiliate spends in fees the higher their income potential through Onyx Lifestyle’s compensation plan.
Finally, although not explicitly clarified, I believe all payments in and out of Onyx Lifestyle are made and/or calculated in bitcoin.
Onyx Lifestyle markets itself with a “we’ll give you access to rich people stuff” shtick.
Behind that marketing pitch is a bog standard MLM crypto Ponzi scheme.
First and foremost if Onyx Lifestyle was a legitimate company, they’d have registered themselves with financial regulators.
Neither on their website or in their marketing presentations does Onyx Lifestyle represent it has done so.
On his LinkedIn profile, Braun cites his location as Utah. On his Facebook profile. Braun’s Facebook and Twitter profiles cite his location as California.
Either way, it’s pretty clear Braun is based out of the US.
A check of the SEC’s Edgar database reveals neither Onyx Lifestyle, Clif Braun or Clifton Braun are registered to offer securities in the US.
Thus without even getting into the specifics of Onyx Lifestyle’s MLM opportunity, the company is off the bat committing securities fraud.
Onyx Lifestyle represents it generates LQD8 Block ROI revenue through a “liquidity micro lending platform”.
No evidence of this platform exists, or any other source of external revenue being used to pay returns on LQD8 Block investment.
Furthermore Onyx Lifestyle’s claims fail the Ponzi logic test.
If the company had access to a platform capable of legitimately generating a consistent 10% monthly return, why share it with randoms over the internet for a few hundred dollars?
The only verifiable source of revenue entering Onyx Life is new affiliate investment.
Using newly invested funds to pay existing affiliates a 10% monthly return makes Onyx Lifestyle a Ponzi scheme.
The rest of Onyx Lifestyle’s compensation plan is pyramid recruitment, paid on the recruitment of new LQD8 Block investors.
One last thing I’ll touch on is Onyx Lifestyle’s “private banking” rubbish.
The company markets its withdrawal system as a private bank:
Again, if Onyx Lifestyle was legitimate they’d have no problem naming their “established UK financial institution”.
Despite the presentation claims, Onyx Lifestyle’s affiliate membership cards are simply attached to a dodgy merchant, which in turn is attached to a cryptocurrency exchange (hence the withdrawal fees).
Onyx Lifestyle pools membership fees and invested funds, with all figures recorded and tracked in their backoffice.
This backoffice is tied to a cryptocurrency exchange (either a central account or multiple accounts), through which new investment and withdrawals are coordinated.
You walk into a store, try to charge something to your card.
The dodgy merchant that card is attached to verifies you have withdrawal commissions, and the transaction goes through.
On the back end either pooled crypto is converted on the fly or (more likely) just paid out of a ready to go balance (hence the max annual withdrawal caps).
This is pretty much how every “withdraw crypto on a card” scheme works, because banks themselves aren’t interested in cryptocurrency.
Such schemes work until banks start blocking the merchant accounts. From there it’s a cat and mouse game, until enough funds are tied to locked SFAR report shuttered accounts.
With respect to Onyx Lifestyle due-diligence, it’s not a deal breaker but quite clearly a misrepresentation of services offered.
Within the context of Onyx Lifestyle’s greater Ponzi and pyramid scheme regulatory violations, it’s certainly a minor concern.
As with all MLM Ponzi schemes, once affiliate recruitment dies down so too will newly invested funds.
This will starve Onyx Lifestyle of ROI revenue, eventually prompting a collapse.
The math behind Ponzi schemes guarantees that when they collapse, the majority of participants lose money.