Dec 25, 2012 News
A number of advertisements on how to make big money have been appearing in the classified ads section of Kaieteur News in recent weeks. They offered the possibility to earn “US$10,000 per month from home.
The ads included:
-”US$10,000 per month from home. We will teach you how. Join a successful company.”
– “Sales Leaders: Can you recruit and train? It’s your turn to make big money. US$$$.”
-”Start your own business and be your own boss. No selling involved. Anyone can participate.”
-”International company seeks independent business associates for expansion in Guyana. High income, low startup.”
All the ads listed the telephone numbers as 613-1616 / 675-8402. It did not list a landline.
For many, US$10,000 ($2M) is money that takes years to earn while for others it would be an impossible amount to accumulate in savings. But the ads even offered the chance to earn this amount without having to invest any money.
Kaieteur News’s call to one of the numbers was answered by a person with a foreign accent who agreed to set up a meeting for the next day, last week.
No fancy office
The “office” was in the bottom flat of a two-storey dwelling home at 106 Third Street, Alberttown, Georgetown. There was a complete lack of any formal office arrangement for this company that was offering persons to make millions of dollars.
The reporters were greeted by a Caucasian man who was shirtless, but wearing jeans with a cleaning bucket in hand. Upon meeting our reporters, he yelled out for “Michael”.
The “office” was an apartment with a kitchen in the corner, a bedroom on the side, a sofa and a small kitchen table.
A slim, fair-skinned male, around his 30s, smilingly asked the two potential clients to sit. He introduced himself as Maikel Bergland, from Curacao, Netherlands Antilles.
He queried the visitors’ interested in making US$10,000 a month and offered to show a video that will show how.
The video was displayed on a laptop that was placed on a small table. It was several minutes long showing a lady hosting a taped programme of persons giving testimonies of how their lives have changed dramatically using Talk Fusion, which, among other things, allows persons to send a video message in an email.
Talk Fusion, headquartered in Brandon, Florida, USA, has other “cutting-edge” video communication products like video newsletters, video conferencing, live broadcasting and video share.
While the clients were watching the video, Maikel went to the kitchen table and was busy attending to some paperwork.
In the meantime, his other companion was pacing the apartment. He remained shirtless even in the presence of his guests, one of them a female. He was said to be from Germany.
The conclusion seemed to be too easy: Making the money is simple. Maikel is in Guyana to recruit people who would introduce Talk Fusion products to others.
Under the multi-level marketing (MLM) scheme, also known as pyramid selling, persons recruited will have to buy packages of the programs or apps as they are known. It could go up to US$750 for a premium package…the more money means more products.
The recruited persons then would recruit others…families, friends, etc…and try to persuade them to the same products. For each product sold, each person along the line is making US$25 in commission. Each recruiter is responsible for the persons under them. And each is suppose to make money selling the video programmes.
Every month, each recruited member is charged a small fee by Talk Fusion for being part of the programme.
The reporters were told that recently in Suriname, a recruited person selling Talk Fusion products earned US$300,000 in commissions.
The reporters were also told that payments for the products can only be done via credit cards. There is no cash, and all payments must be done online.
If you don’t have a credit card, then there is Republic Bank, the reporters were told.
There was not much information on how many persons have been recruited across Guyana. And it is their plan to go to Berbice soon.
Maikel was at pains to point out that the work is hard and the profits will not be immediate.
The Curacao man is set to hold a number of presentations to persons who have called and who are highly interested in earning US$10,000 monthly.
MLM, according to the online Wikepedia, is a marketing strategy in which the sales force is compensated not only for sales they personally generate, but also for the sales of the other salespeople that they recruit. This recruited sales force is referred to as the participant’s “downline”, and can provide multiple levels of compensation. Other terms for MLM include pyramid selling, network marketing, and referral marketing.
MLM companies have been a frequent subject of criticism as well as the target of lawsuits. Criticism has focused on their similarity to illegal pyramid schemes, price fixing of products, high initial start-up costs, emphasis on recruitment of lower-tiered salespeople over actual sales, encouraging if not requiring salespeople to purchase and use the company’s products, potential exploitation of personal relationships which are used as new sales and recruiting targets, complex and sometimes exaggerated compensation schemes, and cult-like techniques which some groups use to enhance their members’ enthusiasm and devotion.
A background search of Talk Fusion found comments, both critical and flattering.
In his Facebook account, under the name “The MasterMaikel Productions”, Bergland, as recent as July, seems to have been involved in another “promotion” called “Bannersbroker”.
He said in the Facebook posting that Bannersbroker is “the only online place of real business where you can see your money growing real time! Profit-sharing on the online marketing space is the real deal in the New Digital Economy of 2012! Email me, if you got questions and if you want to know more about this: [email protected]”.
An additional point to note is that both cell phone numbers are not listed under the name Maikel Bergland with one of the addresses given as De Kinderen, West Coast Demerara.
Guyanese have to be careful about schemes that offer to use their names and addresses as well as offers for future earnings. If the MLM scheme being sold is as good as being offered, then the Talk Fusion system would have been one of the most popular systems in North America and elsewhere.
Why Guyana where a majority of the population is without computers or internet access? Schemes are possible if people are gullible.
Jun 13, 2021Kaieteur News – With the intention to be up to date with the progress of construction works at facilities being constructed by the Government of Guyana with a view of enhancing the ability of...
Kaieteur News- I was sent a clip from Mark Benschop’s Facebook interview with Khemraj Ramjattan last week. Benschop asked... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]