Viva Life Science Review: No retail focus since 1989?
Viva Life Science operated as Viva America Marketing, until it was bought by David Fan in 1989.
Fan also owns Westar Nutrition, which he purchased six months after joining “a large network marketing company” in 1984.
Both companies are based out of California in the US.
Viva America Marketing was one of Westar Nutrition’s customers. Today Fan operates both companies; Viva Life Science is the MLM opportunity through which Westar Nutrition products are sold.
I did try to ascertain which MLM company it was that Fan joined in 1989 but came up blank.
Fan (right) has a history in the finance industry and prior to getting involved in MLM, was an investment banker (1970s).
For over twenty years, VIVA Life Science has built a platform of nutritional science that is setting the standard for the industry both in the US and abroad.
In 2015 Viva Life Science was issued a warning letter by the FDA over its manufacturing practices.
Following a series of inspections in November 2014, the FDA noted
serious violations of FDA’s regulations for Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) in Manufacturing, Packaging, Labeling, or Holding Operations for Dietary Supplements.
These violations cause the dietary supplement products Viva Kids Plus, Viva Ez Kids, B-Easy, LipoGuard, and SelGuard to be adulterated … in that they have been prepared, packed, or held under conditions that do not meet CGMP requirements for dietary supplements.
The FDA also reported labeling violations related to product expiry.
In a followup letter dated June 13th, 2018, the FDA advised Viva Life Science had satisfactorily “addressed the violations” flagged in 2015.
Read on for a full review of the Viva Life Science MLM opportunity.
Viva Life Science Products
Viva Life Science markets a range of nutritional supplements and personal care products manufactured by Welstar Nutrition.
Nutritional and product categories featured on the Viva Life Science website include (note descriptions are quoted verbatim):
- foundation – multinutrient support for all body systems
- nervous system – brain, spinal cord, nerves, ears
- respiratory – lungs, air sacs, nose, throat
- kids foundation – balanced nutrition for children
- immune system – spleen, lymph nodes, tonsils, adenoids, skin, special blood cells
- endocrine – thyroid, pituitary, thymus, pancreas, adrenals, ovaries, testes
- musculoskeletal – bones, joints, nails, teeth, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, muscles
- metabolic – fat cells, blood cells, glands
- anti aging – rejuvenating nutrition
- cardiovascular – heart, arteries, capillaries, veins, blood vessels
- digestive – mouth, esophagus, stomach, intestines, liver, kidneys, gallbladder, pancreas
- personal care – effective skin and dental care
Viva Life Science has too many products to list here individually. If you want specific information about any of their products however, a full catalog with pricing is provided on the Viva Life Science website.
The Viva Life Science Compensation Plan
Viva Life Science’s compensation plan forces affiliates to purchase at least 100 PV of product a month to qualify for commissions.
Commissions are paid when recruited affiliates also purchase at least 100 PV of product a month.
Viva Life Science Ranks
There are nine affiliate ranks within the Viva Life Science compensation plan.
Along with their respective qualification criteria they are as follows:
- Associate – sign up as a Viva Life Science affiliate, generate and maintain at least 100 PV a month and up to 500 GV over a rolling four-month period
- Supervisor – maintain 100 PV a month and 501 to 2500 GV over a rolling four-month period
- Manager – maintain 100 PV a month and 2501 to 5000 GV over a rolling four-month period
- Director – maintain 100 PV a month and 5001 or more GV over a rolling four-month period (must be at least 1000 GV in current month)
- Bronze Executive – have two unilevel team legs generating at least 2000 GV a month each
- Silver Executive – have three unilevel team legs generating at least 3000 GV a month each
- Gold Executive – have four unilevel team legs generating at least 2500 GV a month each
- Silver Presidential – have five unilevel team legs generating at least 3000 GV a month each
- Gold Presidential – have two unilevel team legs generating at least 3000 GV a month each, another two generating at least 4000 GV a month each and another two generating at least 5000 GV a month each
PV stands for “Personal Volume” and is sales volume generated via a Viva Life Science affiliate’s product purchases.
GV stands for “Group Volume” and is PV generated by a Viva Life Science affiliate and their downline.
Note that for rank qualification, at the Bronze Executive and higher ranks Viva Life Science count individual unilevel leg GV only.
Commissions on purchases by personally recruited affiliates
Up until the Director rank, Viva Life Health affiliates only earn commissions on purchases by personally recruited affiliates.
- Supervisors earn 5% on purchases by personally recruited Associates
- Managers earn 10% on purchases by personally recruited Associates and 5% on purchases by Supervisors
- Directors and higher earn 20% on purchases by personally recruited Associates, 15% on purchases by Supervisors and 10% on purchases by Managers
Director and higher ranked Viva Life Science affiliates earn 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.
Viva Life Science caps payable unilevel team levels at six.
Residual commissions are paid out on sales volume generated across these six levels as follows:
- Bronze Executives earn 5% on levels 1 and 2
- Silver Executives earn 5% on levels 1 to 3
- Gold Executives earn 5% on levels 1 to 4
- Silver Presidentials earn 5% on levels 1 to 5
- Gold Presidentials earn 5% on levels 1 to 6
Note that level 1 residual commissions can be increased to 10% if a Viva Life Science affiliate generates and maintains 150 PV and 1500 GV a month.
Required PV for the 10% residual commission rate is only counted on domestic sales volume.
Joining Viva Life Science
Viva Life Science affiliate membership is tied to a minimum 100 PV product order.
Viva Life Science is a robust product range let down by an almost hilariously non-compliant compensation plan.
To qualify for MLM commissions, Viva Life Science affiliates are forced to purchase at least 100 PV of product a month.
Active Distributor: a distributor is considered active in any calendar month in which he or she has at least 100 domestic Personal Volume (PV).
Personal Volume (PV): the volume accumulated from products that a distributor has personally purchased from the Company in a volume month.
Retail pricing on Viva Life Science products is provided, but as far as I can tell is only to emphasize wholesale savings for affiliates.
The only reference to retail sales I came across was in Viva Life Science’s affiliate application.
The application requires affiliates to “certify” they will ‘sell at least 70% of my product orders prior to reordering‘.
What an affiliate of an MLM company does with products purchased is neither here nor there.
From an accounting perspective the sale is recorded as an affiliate purchase, which is internal revenue.
If an MLM company is generating the majority of its revenue from affiliates (internal revenue), it’s operating as a pyramid scheme (ref: Vemma and Herbalife).
To address its glaring regulatory non-compliance Viva Life Science would have to
- scrap mandatory affiliate purchases; and
- implement retail volume qualifiers equal to or higher than affiliate purchase PV.
Until those two issues are addressed, Viva Life Science is basically an autoship recruitment scheme.
You sign up, commit to purchasing 100 PV a month or more worth of product and are then paid on recruitment of other Viva Life Science affiliates who do the same.
Without retail sales this is obviously an unsustainable business model.
Personally I’m at a loss how this has been going on since 1989. The only reason I could come up with is that Viva Life Science notably has business operations outside of the US.
If Alexa is anything to go by, Viva Life Science is pretty dead in the US.
There’s not much going on with Viva Life Science’s Asian region websites either, but if I had to guess I’d say they’ve been getting by on autoship recruitment there.
Regulation of autoship recruitment focused MLM companies is practically non-existent in Asia, so that could explain how Viva Life Science has remained in business for this long.
Regardless, MLM pyramid schemes ultimately result in the majority of participants losing money.
At an individual level this will see you spending money each month on Viva Life Science products. You’ll earn through the MLM opportunity only if you rope new recruits in.
Like I said, not sustainable and, quite frankly, not something anyone looking to build a legitimate MLM business should be pursuing.
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