Surge365 Review: ~$400 travel-based recruitment opp
Hopefully only due to the company currently being in prelaunch, there is no information on the Surge365 website indicating who owns or runs the business.
The Surge365 website domain (“surge365.com”) was registered on the 20th of October 2014, however the domain registration is set to private.
In a press-release published by Surge365 on a third-party website on February 20th, the company names James Tackett as its President.
The press-release claims that Tackett (right)
has done work for more than 50 of the top direct sales companies in the world, including billion dollar brands Avon, Herbalife, Oriflame, and Primerica.
This work appears to be the production of marketing and training videos through Tackett’s company, Success Partners.
This would appear to be Tackett’s first MLM venture as a corporate executive.
Based on the information currently publicly available, it’s unclear whether or not Tackett owns Surge365 or whether he’s working for someone.
The press-release announcing Tackett as Surge365’s President states that he ‘had signed paperwork naming him as president of the newly formed travel company‘. This indicates that the company was already formed before Tackett was appointed.
Why who owns Surge365 is not disclosed, despite the company accepting affiliate signups during its prelaunch phase, is a mystery.
As always, if a 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.
The Surge365 Product Line
Surge365 offer access to a third-party travel booking portal.
A press-release issued on February 19th claims that the portal is provided by Pro Travel Network.
“We see a lot of potential with this company,” said PTN COO Jessica Henderson. “They have technology and a marketing strategy that we think will definitely re-invent how travel is sold through network marketing.”
Pro Travel Network have their own affiliate program on their website, however the company does not publicly disclose how much it costs to join (at least as far as I could see).
The Surge365 Compensation Plan
The Surge365 compensation plan sees affiliates pay a fee to join the company, and then get paid to recruit new affiliates who do the same.
Surge365 affiliates are paid $30 to recruit new affiliates into the opportunity.
This commission is increased by qualifying as Team Builder.
Team Builder qualification can be achieved either by recruiting and maintaining three paid affiliates within 30 days of joining the company, or recruiting and maintaining seven affiliates over time.
Qualifying as a Team Builder increases an affiliate’s personal recruitment commissions to $50 per affiliate recruited.
Residual recruitment commissions are paid via 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 go on to 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.
Commissions are paid out on residual affiliate recruitment activity with a Surge365 affiliate’s unilevel team, paying out $20 per new affiliate recruited anywhere within the team.
Team Builder qualified affiliates also earn $1000 per seven affiliates recruited anywhere within their unilevel team.
Once a Surge365 affiliate and their downline have recruited a total of 30 affiliates, they are promoted to Regional Team Builder status.
A Regional Team Builder affiliate earns $70 per affiliate they personally recruit. Residual recruitment commissions are also increased to $40 per affiliate recruited.
Once a Surge365 affiliate and their downline have recruited a total of 100 affiliates, they are promoted to National Team Builder.
A National Team Builder affiliate earns $80 per affiliate they personally recruit and $50 per each indirectly recruited affiliate (residual).
For every 100 affiliates a Surge365 and their downline recruit, a $10,000 bonus commission is also paid out.
Surge365 affiliates are paid a 100% matching bonus on the earnings of their personally recruited affiliates.
The bonus recruitment commissions of $1000 and $10,000 are also matched, with how much of a match paid out determined by a Surge365 affiliate’s rank:
- Regional Team Builder – $1000 payout match of $100 and $10,000 payout match of $200
- National Team Builder or higher – $1000 payout match of $2000 and $10,000 payout match of $4000
Monthly Fee Commissions
Every Surge365 affiliate must pay $59.95 a month to remain commission qualified.
This $59.95 is paid out as commissions, through six generations of recruitment.
These commissions are paid out via generations, using the same unilevel team structure as used to track recruitment commissions.
A generation in Surge365 is defined when an affiliate in any given unilevel recruitment leg qualifies as a Team Builder. At that point any affiliates between the affiliate at the of the team and the affiliate who first qualified, form the first generation of that particular leg.
The second affiliate in that leg to qualify (must be deeper down the leg than the first), forms the second generation (the affiliates between the first qualified affiliate and the second).
This process to form generations continues down a maximum of six generations per individual unilevel leg, with commissions paid out of the monthly fees all affiliates in the generations pay each month.
How much a Surge365 affiliate is paid of these monthly fees depends on their affiliate rank:
- Team Builder – $2 per affiliate
- Regional Team Builder – $4 per affiliate
- National Team Builder or higher – $6 per affiliate
National Marketing Director Bonuses
If a Surge365 affiliate and their downline recruit 500 affiliates, the affiliate qualifies as a National Marketing Director.
National Marketing Director affiliates receive a “new Dodge Charger or Challenger” car (the actual car), and a $2000 a month bonus commission.
Note that National Marketing Director Level 2 and above qualifications are not provided in the Surge365 compensation plan material.
Bonuses for this rank are provided though, with qualifying affiliates receiving a Jaguar XF, BMW 428i or Mercedes CLA45 AMG car, and a $4000 a month bonus commission.
At this point the only thing that changes with the higher Surge365 affiliate ranks is the monthly bonus commission paid out:
- National Marketing Director Level 3 qualified affiliates are paid $8000 a month
- National Marketing Director Level 4 qualified affiliates are paid $12,000 a month
- National Marketing Director Level 5 qualified affiliates are paid a one-time bonus of $1,000,000
Whether National Marketing Director Level 5 affiliates continue to receive the $12,000 a month Level 4 bonus is unclear.
Also unclear is why the qualification criteria for these levels has been omitted from the official Surge365 compensation plan material.
I wasn’t able to ascertain the initial cost of Surge365 affiliate membership.
An official marketing video from the company however states that ‘Surge365 membership costs less than four hundred dollars’.
This suggests that Surge365 affiliate membership is probably between $350 to $400. One possibility is that it’s $365, which would tie into the company’s name.
In addition to an upfront fee, all Surge365 affiliates must also pay a $59.95 a month fee to remain commission qualified.
Surge365 offer yet another travel-themed MLM business opportunity that has nothing to do with travel.
The travel portal offered by Surge365 is neither here nor there, merely offering access to third-party discounts that have nothing to do with the Surge365 MLM opportunity.
Surge365’s opportunity instead simply revolves around affiliates paying a fee and then recruiting affiliates who do the same.
Affiliates are paid both directly and indirectly to recruit, along with several bonuses paid out once they reach specific recruitment milestones.
Apart from the initial hundreds of dollars affiliates pay to join Surge365 being shared out to those who recruit, as long as everyone continues to pay their $59.95 fees residual commissions are also paid out each month.
That’s pretty much there is to it, with the business model likely to be identified as a straight-up pyramid scheme by regulators should any investigate the company.
Absolutely nothing is marketed or sold to retail customers through the Surge365 MLM business opportunity, with retail non-existent in the company’s compensation plan.
No doubt Pro Travel Network do actually pay commissions on travel booked through their portal, with Surge365 sharing all or part of these commissions with their affiliates.
Again, this is external to the MLM business opportunity (it’s not even mentioned in the company’s compensation plan), with MLM commissions paid only on the recruitment of Surge365 affiliates.
As with all recruitment-driven pyramid schemes, once affiliate recruitment dries up so too will the commissions paid out by Surge365.
This will first manifest itself when affiliates at the bottom of the scheme find themselves unable to recruit any new affiliates.
Eventually they will give up and stop paying their $59.95 a month fee, which in turn means that those above them stop getting paid. They too stop paying their $59.95 a month fee and as this effect trickles up along Surge365’s affiliate genealogy, eventually a company-wide collapse is triggered.
At that point anybody who didn’t manage to recruit enough affiliates to recoup the cost of their own affiliate fees (including the monthly fees paid), loses out.