Romania has been perpetuating for more than two years a dangerous and misleading situation created on the tourism and direct sales market by a US company activating through the so-called multilevel (MLM) under the name of World Ventures, a company that uses intermediaries to sell their so-called products and services here, but without being registered as a legal entity in that country and without legal and commercial collaboration with people through which it operates.
The company sells the Romanian membership to a private travel club, stating that it offers cheap luxury vacations to those affiliated with the club, as well as commissions to promote the registration of new ones. members.
World Ventures already has a network of more than 5,000 members in Romania, some of whom are service users, others service / concept / business sellers. The membership fees to the company consist of not only initial registration fees, but also monthly fees, since the parent company and its entities are not registered in the tax register and do not pay taxes to the company. Romanian state for these works. neither one nor the other does not exist.
Having no idea or prior experience of the misleading way things are going in this company, I joined as a member in October 2014, after having told me at a public presentation that in our country, World Ventures offered the opportunity to join the club as a natural person, but not yet as a company or legal entity. In addition, each registration was made using the same unique foreign address provided by the presenters / hosts / sponsors to each new member, indicating that some members of World Ventures have agreed to provide their own addresses for the temporary registration of people located in these countries. countries in which World Ventures is in the early stages of business and development. The address that the World Ventures hosts used to register and all the other people present at this meeting was a Hungarian address. I did not understand the procedure very well, but since we were talking about a company operating at that time in some 20 countries, I considered this to be a good and sure reason to register as a traveler and also as a sales representative by paying for 700 months approximately 700 dollars as a deposit for future vacations, as well as for the right to promote at one point the club as a marketing representative.
The problem appeared when I created a website about the availability of this concept for Romanians and about information about the mechanisms of this club, as well as about the possibilities of registration.
Just before starting the construction of the website, I asked those who showed me the trade – but also the official employees of it – whether it was possible to have a website that promoted this trade differently than when face-to-face meetings or presentation rooms (the old MLM methods that I do not personally agree with, due to the pressures and reluctance of the general public to the good intentions of those presenting the business concepts in this way). At first, I was told that there was no problem except to follow certain site construction rules. I took the answer for granted and created the website addressing Romanians around the world through a detailed online presentation of the concept. Once ready, I sent another email to the company for final approval. The response I received from Heather Vincent (Society Specialist for Member Relations on Policies and Practices) left me speechless:
The website should be deleted immediately. This website is a Romanian site. WorldVentures is not open to business in Romania. Therefore, we will need you to provide proof of your residence in Hungary. The requirements to become a WorldVentures representative state that you must reside in a country in which WorldVentures operates and accept new representatives. If you do not remove the website and we provide your Hungarian identity document within three (3) business days, you may suspend your representation agreement ID # 63088902.
Not only had I not run any World Ventures business until that date, but I never imagined that I could not do it otherwise than in hiding as long as society – through Romanian leaders – organized systematically public presentation meetings. In addition, the content presented by Romanian leaders – supervised from time to time by outside business leaders – was the same basic information that I posted. Therefore, I felt that banning written promotion on the Internet and encouraging spoken promotion disadvantaged and discriminated against me, while raising serious doubts about the legitimacy and legality of this trade.
Given all these facts, I told the staff that I was out of this scheme anyway, but that I wanted to get my money back (contributions earned at that time, value for which I did not receive any product or service, a basic condition for including a commercial act in the MLM category or direct selling and not in the enrichment pyramid). The ladies did not want to return, but only $ 60 out of the $ 730 spent by me for NOTHING, inviting me to challenge their decision within 14 days if I did not agree with it. Although I challenged it immediately, I received no response from the staff, and after a week of waiting, I wrote a second letter asking them if I should consider silence as an answer. What I received was an email that ignored any dialogue on this issue and in which I received a hollow reply from the first message, again asserting that I had violated the policy of the company regarding business development in unopened domestic markets, which is why the case is considered closed. .
We terminated your WorldVentures Membership ID #: 63088902 as you marketed WorldVentures products and services in a non-open country. Currently, we do not have a calendar for the opening of WorldVentures in Romania. We have strict criteria and a firm strategy in place to launch the business in any new country.
How should I call such treatment? Unfair? Misleading? Offensive? Imoral? Illegal? I would say all.
But the history of World Ventures in Romania is not isolated and does not talk about me. This is the story of a wealthy society that believes it can operate anywhere, anytime and in any case, by adopting policies and abusive practices without being disturbed. My wish is to expose the illegality, hypocrisy and absurdity of the organizational culture called World Ventures Marketing LLC, which chooses to adore profit and flagrantly despise l & # 39; human.
How things are going
World Ventures board members know what they are doing and are very good at trying to protect themselves from all the possible consequences of the misleading way in which they operate. The company owns several websites that manage the company: registration of new members in the company and virtual office of each independent collaborator (www.worldventures.biz), holiday bookings (www.dreamtrips.com), recruitment and presentation of staff (www.worldventures). .com). Payments for registration as an employee with the status of tourist or business partner are made exclusively online by credit card via www.worldventures.biz. The list of countries of residence of those who can join the club now has about 28 countries. Romania is not and is not even today (December 2016) among them because "it's in pre-launch", it's what they say in their presentations very well organized throughout the country .
So you understand that here the system works with some restrictions but that the company has already started to operate and expand widely. And as World Ventures is in this pre-publication phase for years, no one from Romania can register with a Romanian address and must therefore indicate an address belonging to one of the countries of the official list. Therefore, during presentations, you receive the specific address of a representative or an employee from Hungary or Cyprus under which new members of Romania sing for days in a row. As I have already mentioned, registrations can only be made by individuals. When I asked why it was not possible to register as a company, as a legal entity, the speakers talked about the state of "pre-release" and the legislation that restricts things to this Stadium.
When I communicated the Hungarian address, I saw the money taken from the card without any other identification filter. Although I have never made an electronic payment in which I communicated other people's addresses as billing address, the registration address is totally different from that of my personal card (or address of the card), the payment was considered valid, despite the country's delimitation criteria. When I saw that it worked perfectly, I imagined that the registration form in which my data was needed to register for World Ventures was no more than a mere formality, the same way you create, using the information of your choice, a Hotmail email account or an account. Yahoo Messenger account.
However, the following legal aspect that I noticed later was very curious: if this form was used to certify individuals as coming from a country where World Ventures operates, it is therefore legitimate to recruit new ones. members and collect money, why the address provided – at least in the section "Billing Address" – is not compared to the address of the card from which the payment is made, but also to the nationality of the holder, so that, if they do not match, both the payment and the registration to invalidate (hence the migration of money into World Ventures accounts)? As I know so far, any legitimate electronic payment processor requires you to mention VERIFYing credentials, which then take into account the validation or invalidation of the transaction. Normally, you should not be able to provide an address from Greece for the services payable by electronic payment operating only in Greece but take advantage of this service in Romania after making your payment using as a means of identification and payment a credit card. Romania (without any additional documents required as long as the payment processor allows it).
Those of World Ventures falsify the criteria of separation by country, guaranteeing them to be able to charge money from everywhere, while shouting that they only operate in about twenty countries, of which Romania does not belong, but from which they have earned millions. from dollars up to now, untaxed money.
In addition, if they really wish to use a country connection criterion, they may, as additional measures applicable at registration, require either the identity of the new member, a document of ownership or a service invoice. the constituent instrument of the personal society. . Since this is not part of the application form, the decisive criterion of the country is a simple story, without any legal or contractual value.
In addition, so that anyone can SELL on behalf of a company (the product in this case being the affiliation to a traveling club and not the actual holiday) must be legalized in terms of the contractual relationship between the legal person (person corporation). entity) World Ventures Marketing LLC and corporation (legal entity) George & Company. As long as George & Company provides marketing services for World Ventures and raises funds for these services from World Ventures, the two entities do not have a legal and commercialized collaboration agreement initialed for marketing and payment services. corresponding charges on the server. On the other hand, both sides have a big problem: they are illegal. This is exactly how World Ventures and its associates operate in our country.
And when we talk about World Ventures, we're talking about a global chart and magazine company, a company that in 2014 ranked 47th in the world's most profitable direct selling companies . A company that organizes presentations in front of tens of thousands of people. Would anyone think that this company is acting like a mafia structure wherever it gets the chance?
I'm attaching two photos showing how World Ventures works through one of his basic men.
1. Facebook page of Wes Melcher, official coach and speaker of World Ventures, as he presents himself (taken in mid-2015).
2 The poster of a local presentation announcing the arrival of Wes Melcher in Romania to train the Romanian team on the development of the company.