Turbo Review: Forex trading bot securities fraud
Turbo, also marketed as “We Are Turbo”, fails to provide company ownership information on its website.
Turbo’s website domain (“weareturbo.io”), was first registered in 2020. The private registration was last updated on December 8th, 2021.
Turbo’s website defaults to Spanish. The company’s marketing material is also all in Spanish.
Further research reveals Turbo marketing material citing David Merino as founder and CEO of the company.
Why this information isn’t provided on Turbo’s website is unclear.
Prior to Turbo David Merino headed up Frequency as CEO:
Frequency was a trading bot MLM scheme. It appears to have collapsed on or around January 2021. This coincides with Turbo’s initial domain registration on December 8th, 2020.
Read on for a full review of Turbo’s MLM opportunity.
Turbo has no retailable products or services.
Affiliates are only able to market Turbo affiliate membership itself.
Turbo’s Compensation Plan
Turbo affiliates invest on the promise of a 5% to 17% monthly return.
Turbo claims to generate returns through trading bots, which it sells subscriptions to:
- SA1 – 5% to 7% monthly ROI, costs $119 and then $99 a month
- SA2 – 7% to 10% monthly ROI, costs $399 and then $149 a month
- SA3 – 10% to 17% monthly ROI, costs $999 and then $199 a month
- Premium SA1 – 5% to 7% monthly ROI, costs $1000 every 6 months
- Premium SA2 – 7% to 10% monthly ROI, costs $2500 every 6 months
- Premium SA3 – 10% to 17% monthly ROI, costs $3500 every 6 months
The non-Premium plans are significantly cheaper. The advertised returns are the same so I’m not sure what the difference between the two types of subscriptions is.
Note that regardless of which subscription is chosen, Turbo charges a 15% fee on generated returns.
The MLM side of Turbo pays on subscription fees paid by recruited affiliates.
Turbo pays a 20% commission on subscription fees paid by personally recruited affiliates.
- earn $150 on the sale of a Premium SA1 subscription
- earn $375 on the sale of a Premium SA2 subscription
- earn $525 on the sale of a Premium SA3 subscription
Turbo pays residual commissions 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 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.
Turbo pays a 5% residual commission on returns paid across ten unilevel team levels.
Note that recruitment is required to qualify for residual commissions:
- recruit 1 affiliate and earn residual commissions on two unilevel team levels
- recruit 2 affiliates and earn residual commissions on four unilevel team levels
- recruit 3 affiliates and earn residual commission on six unilevel team levels
- recruit four affiliates and earn residual commissions on eight unilevel team levels
- recruit five affiliates and earn residual commissions on ten unilevel team levels
Recruited affiliates must have an active subscription to count towards residual commission qualification criteria.
HolderX commissions appear to be a bonus paid on
the operations of the subscribers of your organization up to the 3rd level!
What this means is unclear. It sounds like it’s a straight up addition to residual commissions, but without the recruitment requirements.
In any event, commissions paid out on up to three unilevel team levels via HolderX are as follows:
- level 1 – 5%
- level 2 – 3%
- level 3 – 2%
ShareX Bonus Pools
Turbo takes 15% of monthly subscription fee revenue and places it into two rank-based bonus pools.
- 25K Entrepreneurs who have recruited one affiliate that month receive a share in a 5% ShareX bonus pool
- 50K Entrepreneurs who have recruited two affiliates that month receive a share in a 10% ShareX bonus pool
Note that Turbo do not provide rank qualification criteria.
Joining Turbo requires payment of either monthly or bi-annual subscription fees.
- SA1 – $119 and then $99 a month
- SA2 – $399 and then $149 a month
- SA3 – $999 and then $199 a month
- Premium SA1 – $1000 every 6 months
- Premium SA2 – $2500 every 6 months
- Premium SA3 – $3500 every 6 months
Note all payments within Turbo are made in bitcoin.
Turbo’s MLM opportunity presents a few immediate red flags.
The first is no information about the company’s trading bots is disclosed.
Turbo is essentially a continuation of Frequency under a different name. Same people are running the show and it’s the same trading bot opportunity.
This begs the question why did Frequency collapse?
Also having operated for a few years under two company names, where are the audited trading results?
I suspect Frequency was abandoned after recruitment collapsed.
This would suggest Turbo’s trading bot is secondary to recruiting and earning off subscription fees. This would functionally make Turbo a pyramid scheme.
The second immediate concern is Turbo clearly offering a passive investment opportunity.
It appears to be the “lulz can’t touch our money!” model. That is affiliates pay for access to a bot, which is then connected to their trading account.
MLM companies offering passive returns need to register with financial regulators. Turbo provides no evidence it has registered with financial regulators.
David Merino appears to be based out of Spain. Securities in Spain are regulated by the Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores (CNMV).
Not registering with the CNMV or any other financial regulator means that, at a minimum, Turbo is committing securities fraud and operating illegally.
The third red flag is Turbo only accepting subscription fees in bitcoin.
Turbo represents its bots engage in forex trading:
Bitcoin being the only payment option comes off as an attempt to dodge regulation. When Turbo collapses like Frequency, it will also make it close to impossible for victim recovery.
The fourth red flag is Turbo touting a 10% to 17% monthly ROI. If that was consistently possible, David Merino would have been running these bots since Frequency.
With even a minimum capital amount, surely after 2+ years compounding monthly he’d be set?
“Lulz can’t touch our money” scams typically collapse when the admin(s) rig trades in their favor. This results in affiliates waking up one day to drained accounts.
“Our bot malfunctioned!” or “we got hacked!” are common cover excuses.
Either way the end result is the same: the majority of participants in trading schemes like Turbo lose money.
Update 13th June 2023 – Turbo has collapsed.