Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) is a kind of pyramid scheme where you earn money not only on your sales, but on the sales of the people you recruit under you, and the people they recruit who are essentially under you. Many of the products sold under these schemes are common items like soap and detergent. These products have already reached market saturation.
Multi-level marketing operates based on recruiting unsalaried salespeople who hope to make extra income on the side.
In order to be successful in these schemes, you really need to recruit many people under you, and those people need to sell a lot of goods. In reality, such schemes aren’t successful because profit is generated only if a lot of products are sold.
During the initial meeting with a recruiter, you are told that if you just recruit 5 people under you per month, and they do the same, you will make a large amount of money. However, in doing the math, if you recruit 5 people, and each of those people recruit 5 people, this equals 25 people. If those 25 people recruit 5 people, that is 125, etc. If this continues, the population of the entire world will be under you in around one year. Therefore, it is very impractical.
Quixtar is a multi-level marketing company founded in 1999 by the owners of Amway. Quixtar is owned by Alticor, which also owns Amway. Therefore, both Amway and Quixtar fall under Alticor. These companies are based in the U.S. and they have now reached other countries like India, Australia, the UK, and other European countries.
Many people, especially newcomers to the U.S., have enrolled in this business. It may make you wonder why, if so many people are into it, why it’s really not a good opportunity to participate.
Please note that it is not legal to work for these companies while are you are on a non-immigrant visa such as H1, H4, B1, B2, L1, F1, F2, etc. Even though H1 and L1 are work visas, they allow you to work only for the sponsoring company. In order to work for such marketing scheme companies, you must have a valid work authorization such as U.S. citizenship, permanent resident (green card holder), or have an EAD (work permit).
H4 spouses are especially vulnerable to the temptation to participate in these schemes, as they are not allowed to work in the U.S., mostly sitting at home and looking for something to do, especially if it makes money. (H4 visa holders can get a work permit under some circumstances, but that is besides the point.) It is not legal for H4 spouses to join Amway/Quixtar and work for them.
Amway/Quixtar salespeople are called an IBO (Independent Business Owner).
Mode of Operation and Warning Signs
If an unknown person approaches you in a common place like a mall, Wal-Mart, etc., and is over friendly with you and starts a conversation like:
“Hey, that’s a nice shirt.”
“Want to make some extra money?”
“We are looking for bright students like you.”
“This is a great business opportunity.”
“I guarantee you financial freedom.”
“You can make millions.”
“How about earning a few thousand dollars without getting distracted from your current full-time job?”
“I am currently expanding in Chicago. We have teams all over the U.S. and abroad.”
You should enter the conversation with suspicion in such cases. (Even though every person that does this may not be involved with Amway/Quixtar.)
They use these phrases to break the ice, eventually hoping to get your telephone number. They will call you after few days and try to set up a meeting to discuss his business plan. He will never mention Quixtar/Amway in his initial conversation, and he will drive you to an Amway/Quixtar open meeting. In this meeting, there will be lots of people who will howl and clap crazily. Once the meeting starts, a speaker will explain how people lose their money in conventional chains of production company to retail sellers. Then he will start to show the BIG DREAMS to the audience. The meeting audience will mostly consist of IBOs. There are only a few people who meet IBOs in malls and other places. Therefore, apparently, the speaker targets only the new people sitting in the front row.
Towards the end, you will hear the company name QUIXTAR in his speech. He will try to explain in cult language that your job will not give you financial freedom; therefore, the only way to financial freedom is joining Quixtar!
Once the meeting is over, your IBO will drive you home and try to sign you up. Signing is not free. It will cost you $50. This is a yearly fee.
Here is the moment of BIG THINKING. You are totally skeptical. In some cases, your best friend is trying to recruit you. Most people join this business because they trust their friends or relatives. They don’t see Quixtar for what it is. If they are new to the country, it is a very confusing and challenging experience.
Here are a few tips to those who find themselves in any of the above situations:
- Don’t take into account that it’s your friend or relative who’s trying to recruit you. Only consider that it’s Quixtar, the business they are talking about. In most cases, your friend/relative doesn’t know much about it and is just trying to get you on board.
- Do some research on the internet and study these companies. Study blogs related to Quixtar and experiences shared by former IBOs who have ended their life in this business.
Here are a few blogs about Quixtar in which the author has described his work and experiences when he was active in this business. Read it thoroughly.
- You can also ask people who are not in this business. It is even better to ask people who have lived in the U.S. for a long time.
Prepare some questions to ask the friend or relative who is trying to recruit you. You probably won’t get direct answers. You will get lots of questions and other non-related stuff, which should make you more skeptical.
- In such a short article, it is difficult to explain all the inner workings of such schemes and how people lose their money.
Disclaimer: This article is written purely for information and awareness purposes. It is also based on personal experiences. immihelp®.com does not endorse these businesses. immihelp®.com does not question the legitimacy of these businesses, either. This is NOT an advertisement for any such business. Please use your own judgment.
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