John Oliver Exposes the Scam of Multi-Level Marketing

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver devoted this week’s episode to multi-level marketing. Although he uses quite a bit of humor in his presentation, his analysis of MLM is spot on. Multi-level marketing companies are pyramid schemes, plain and simple. MLM is not a business. It doesn’t matter what product …

Is Usana Running an Illegal Pyramid Scheme?

All good multi-level marketing companies have one thing in common: They fail to disclose enough information to allow consumers and regulators to determine if they are in the business of recruiting or selling products. They disclose just enough facts and figures to make it appear that they are being transparent. …

Multi-Level Marketing Income Disclosures

Some multi-level marketing (MLM) companies release income disclosures or earnings disclosures. These documents theoretically provide insight into how much distributors earn in commissions or overrides. However, the disclosures are generally worthless. What is more important than the information in these documents? The information that is not disclosed in the documents. …

Multi-Level Marketing Companies and Pyramid Schemes

For decades, muti-level marketing companies like Amway, Mary Kay, Herbalife, Avon, and Usana have fought against being labeled as pyramid schemes. They say that pyramid schemes are illegal, and that their MLM business format is perfectly legal. My definition of MLMs is a little nuanced. I tend to call them …

Interesting Develoments in Case of Mary Kay Cosmetics Trying to Stop Liquidators From Buying and Selling Their Products

In the world of Mary Kay Cosmetics, recruiting new victims into the multi-level marketing (MLM) system and frontloading them with large inventory packages is critical to the survival of the company. The company and the upper levels of the pyramid rely on repeated ordering of products by beauty consultants, and …

Irresponsible reporting about Usana by The Associated Press

In an article today about the Usana Health Sciences (NASDAQ:USNA) buyout offer by Myron Wentz (Gull Holdings), the following inaccurate statement was made: The Securities and Exchange Commission concluded during the first quarter USANA’s marketing model is not a pyramid scheme, but the stock has a short interest about 34 …