Rich and Jay set up shop in Rich’s basement selling Liquid Organic Cleaner, or L.O.C., Amway’s first original product. With their trust in each other and the support of their loving wives, they’re able to weather all bumps on their ride to the top, including the first federal investigation of Amway, by the Federal Trade Commission in 1975. In a chapter of his memoir titled ‘The Critics Weigh In’ (in Part Two, called ‘Selling America’), Rich says of the suit, ‘[We] considered the suit another government misunderstanding of business principles and an attack on free enterprise.’
By the 30th level, the entire population of the earth will be in the system and the last 3 billion people who just entered the system into the 30th level have nobody else to refer. If each member is allowed to refer 6 friends, then the entire world population will be covered by the time it reaches 13th level itself (as illustrated in the chart below). Everybody they try to approach is already a member. The forerunners would have made huge amount of money by now and would go absconding, leading into a fraud.
Amway conducted a four-month evaluation of different IoT platforms, ultimately choosing AWS IoT. AWS’s scalability, global presence, maturity in the IoT space, security, and outstanding professional services were the deciding factors for Amway. “We do business in more than 100 countries and territories, and we had no idea how much data-center capacity we would need from an IoT perspective,” says Mike Gartner, senior IoT platform architect at Amway.

Amway is based out of Ada, MI, and has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, with only 11 closed complaints over the past three years. It appears that Amway has a generally negative reputation among IBOs, and the most common complaints we encountered during our research cited difficulty making money, high prices, and dishonest recruiting tactics.
Disappointments like this got Sherri down, and keeping her outlook positive was beginning to strain even World Wide Dreambuilders, LLC. At one First Look, Dave Duncan (Greg and Brad’s father, a straight-talkin’ Montanan who had given up a successful construction business to build dreams with Amway) reassured her with a timeline he drew on the eraser-board showing that you could make millions within ten years. Afterwards, however, during the mingling—while Dave warned a young couple that, sure, some brain surgeons did well, but only the ones at the top—Sherri started eyeing the evening’s hosts with despair. They were crosslines, Direct Distributors who had broken 7,500 PV with an all-out one-summer campaign. Sherri, almost beside herself, insisted that Josh, Jean, and I have a meeting to “figure out what we’re going to do. Because we’ve got to do something!”

Pyramid scheme or not, Amway is creepy and functions as a cult. These crazies nearly sucked me in. What made me really question them though was when after they explained to me their “business plan”, I told them that i’d take a few days to think about it, to talk with family about it. They immediately tell me not to tell my family about them, that my family would be skeptical about the opportunities amway would bring me, that my family would discourage me from doing it. What kind of shady business doesn’t want you to tell your family about them???
Everyone was dressed to impress, I mean, I'm talking fancy suits. Besides a couple of old farts in there that I'm sure were running the show, everyone else was in their early 20s. I mean, makes sense, I was targeted, haha, get it? Because it was at "Target." Sorry, lame joke. Anyway, he introduced me to some of these guys and asked questions to them, like "what has been your biggest take away from this?" and "what do you think about it?" Stuff like that so I could see that hey, maybe this is a thing for me (it wasn't, in case you're wondering). They were all brain-washed, I mean, just from the speech I heard that night all that was said was a bunch of BS. And all I could see around the room was all these young kids just eating this up like free candy. The guy did no real math up there, just threw up some really good sounding money number and that we should build trust. Honestly, that was my takeaway from that whole one-hour speech he gave. I'll admit that the guy was an excellent speaker. He had the crowd. I just wasn't buying it.
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Methodology: Source Euromonitor International Limited. Claim verification based on Euromonitor research and methodology for Amway Corporation conducted from May through June 2018. Euromonitor determined reviewed all competitors and eliminated those whose total sales for 2017 were less than half of Amway's stated 2015 bonuses paid out. The bonuses of the remaining companies were compared to Amway's 2017 bonuses paid out and no companies remained after this stage. To the extent permissible, Euromonitor does not accept or assume responsibility to any third party in respect of this claim. 
The Coaches Poll has come under criticism for being inaccurate, with some of the charges being that coaches are biased towards their own teams and conferences, that coaches don't actually complete their own ballots, and that coaches are unfamiliar with even the basics, such as whether a team is undefeated or not, about teams they are voting on.[5][6] In 2012, USC Trojans coach Lane Kiffin resigned as a voter after just one vote amidst controversy over his preseason selection of his school as No. 1. Kiffin told reporters, "I would not vote USC No. 1, I can tell you that much." However, USA Today, citing the need to "protect the poll's integrity", revealed that Kiffin had voted his team for the top spot. Kiffin apologized and explained that his comments were from the perspective of an opposing coach voting for USC.[7]
In 2007, Amway's operations were halted in the United Kingdom and Ireland following a yearlong investigation by the UK Department of Trade and Industry, which moved to have Amway banned on the basis that the company had employed deceptive marketing, presented inflated earnings estimates, and lured distributors into buying bogus "motivation and training" tools.[148][149] In 2008, a UK judge dismissed government claims against Amway's operations, saying major reforms in the prior year (which included banning non-Amway approved motivational events and materials) had fixed company faults that favored selling training materials over products and misrepresented earnings. However, the judge also expressed his belief that Amway allowed "misrepresentations" of its business by independent sellers in years past and failed to act decisively against the misrepresentations.[150]
For many people, family and friends are the first place they start to recruit in network marketing. Even if you don't want to sell them anything you can practice your pitch in their presence. Just be sure that you're asking for honest critique and no false pats on the back. Trying out your sales approach will help you grow. If you give them proper information about the company, the odds are they will not suspect any sort of Amway Pyramid Scheme.
There are two ways you can quickly judge Amway. The first is by taking a community college Economics 101 class. MLM relies on obtaining wealth directly from those below you. You’ll hear a lot of Amway people making faulty comparisons to how other companies work – but the fact of the matter is that the growth of employees of, say, McDonalds is due to the outside demand of the wider public while the growth of “Members” of Amway is due to the internal need of Amway to become self-sustaining. There’s a reason why Amway focuses all its energy on its “networks” rather than the products it actually sells. It should be noted, however, that most of what Amway does is COMPLETELY LEGAL. It’s the equivalent of asking your friends to give you a quarter for every dollar they spend and then encourage them to make the same deal with their friends (with you taking an uptop percentage.) This is why Amway does indeed “partner” with large businesses…such large businesses realize the simplicity of Amway and are more than happy to take a portion of that profit! The issue, however, is whether there is an actual career in Amway – and the simple answer is not unless you either got in early or have lots and lots of family, friends, and poor souls you can get to agree to be below you in your “network.”
Others Receiving Votes: Kentucky 98; Duke 55; South Florida 45; Colorado 41; South Carolina 40; Iowa 36; Washington State 35; Brigham Young 30; Missouri 21; NC State 19; Appalachian State 13; Syracuse 11; California 11; Utah 10; Cincinnati 10; Texas 9; North Texas 5; Troy 4; Minnesota 3; San Diego State 3; Florida 3; Arizona State 3; Houston 2; Tennessee 2; Arkansas State 2; Vanderbilt 2; Fresno State 1.
In his online book "Merchants of Deception", former Quixtar IBO Eric Scheibeler stated that he and his family received death threats from his uplines during a business meeting and from an anonymous phone call. In 2006, a Swedish newspaper published statements attributed to Scheibeler which implied that Amway/Quixtar employees were responsible for these threats. Amway and Quixtar sued Scheibeler on February 27, 2007 for defamation.[40] In July 2007, Scheibeler wrote a letter to an attorney for Amway and Quixtar clarifying among other things that, to his knowledge, Doug DeVos or Amway/Quixtar employees never made any death threats to him.[41]

The DeVos family’s charitable giving and political activism sprawls across three generations. It’s not just Dick and Betsy, but Richard and Helen’s other children, too. There’s Daniel DeVos, who chairs the Orlando Magic, an NBA franchise the family owns, and his wife, Pamella. There’s Doug DeVos, Amway’s current president and the chair of the executive committee of the National Constitution Center, and his wife, Maria. There’s Cheri DeVos, who sits on the board at Alticor, Amway’s parent company. And there’s their children, a generation of young adults ready to carry the baton.

When I got started with Amway Global back in 2006, like you, I too though at first it was a scam or pyramid scheme. But than I decided just to take the dive because it was working for others. I was told by my upline to build or make a list of all my friends, family members, etc and contact them to sell products and present to them the business opportunity. And if possible, schedule a home event or get them to a local hotel meeting, on a 3 way call, or attend a live webinar presentation.
The Dream is “sort of about pyramid schemes,” as host Jane Marie says at the beginning of the new podcast series, but it takes a moment to figure out just what that means. In the beginning of the first episode, which you can listen to exclusively here, Marie dives into a classic pyramid scheme of the 70s and 80s, the “airplane game,” a trend that became so prevalent among a certain subset in New York and South Florida that The New York Times caught on, calling it “a high-stakes chain letter.”
The next evening (Sunday because that's URA's phone session night) I received a call from the girl. I missed the call but immediately called her back thinking she was wanting to make dinner plans or something along those lines. She began talking about this cool business opportunity she has and felt like we would be perfect for it! The way she explained it made it sound legit. She said it was a company who endorses major brand products online, etc., etc. I was intrigued at first. They had us in the palm of their hands. When I hung up the phone, my husband immediately said "They're using us. This is some MLM scam." I believed him, but I had liked the couple so much I didn't want to lose their friendship, so we decided to just try it out. See if it's for us.
Amway is not a scam. The reason why people fail to be successful is because it is hard work just like any other business and not because it is a scam. Good people skills is a must for this kind of business and definitely, you need to be intelligent and clever in marketing your products just like in any other business. A lot of people fail in this business because they have little idea about money making skills or business skills. I have worked in corporate and I know the common thing among all the companies in the world is that they exaggerate about products, the lifestyle you will get and the money you will make. ALL companies do that. The only difference is that in Amway you are not sitting in a company building for your work. Rest depends on your selling skills. 

When Dick and Betsy DeVos are asked why they’ve chosen to mount a personal crusade for education reform, they often cite their family’s charitable giving, which puts them into contact with scholarship applicants. For years, the DeVoses read reams of personal essays filled with wrenching stories of dire finances and an abiding hope in the transformative impact of education. Those stories, the DeVoses have said, made it clear that something had to change.
The Club Level at the Amway Center -- between the Terrace and the Promenade -- splits into several types of premium seating. There are suites, including the Founders Suite which can accommodate 16 and the larger Presidents Suite, each providing a plush and roomy space from which to enjoy the game. Loge seats are among the most popular though, combining great additions like all-inclusive food and drink with a close-to-the-action feel.
But it turns out to be so much more complicated. In 1979, the F.T.C., after investigating Amway, a multilevel marketing company with a vast product line, decided that the company’s business model passed muster — even though recruitment was at the heart of it — because it claimed to take certain steps that (among other things) supposedly showed that its recruits were selling the company’s products to real customers, not just to other recruits. Very quickly, other multilevel marketing companies adopted the “Amway rules” to stay on the right side of the F.T.C.
William Keep, dean of the College of New Jersey’s School of Business, and a pyramid scheme critic, told Bloomberg earlier this year that “in terms of sending clear signals to the industry, the F.T.C. has done worse than nothing since 1979. It sends confusing signals that have in no way helped us understand how to identify a multilevel marketing company that may be a pyramid scheme.”

Amway combines direct selling with a multi-level marketing strategy. Amway distributors, referred to as "independent business owners" (IBOs), may market products directly to potential customers and may also sponsor and mentor other people to become IBOs. IBOs may earn income both from the retail markup on any products they sell personally, plus a performance bonus based on the sales volume they and their downline (IBOs they have sponsored) have generated.[3] People may also register as IBOs to buy products at discounted prices. Harvard Business School, which described Amway as "one of the most profitable direct selling companies in the world", noted that Amway founders Van Andel and DeVos "accomplished their success through the use of an elaborate pyramid-like distribution system in which independent distributors of Amway products received a percentage of the merchandise they sold and also a percentage of the merchandise sold by recruited distributors".[68]
Methodology: Source Euromonitor International Limited. Claim verification based on Euromonitor research and methodology for Amway Corporation conducted from August to September 2012. Euromonitor studied nine leading direct selling companies in Colombia, as provided by Amway, and through interviews with company distributors and company employees Euromonitor tried to determine if any of the companies had implemented an internal Facebook page exclusive to distributors that provides tools for customization, retailing and content management. None of the nine leading direct selling companies had this capability at the time of the research. To the extent permissible, Euromonitor does not accept or assume responsibility to any third party in respect of this claim. Further information is available upon request.
William Keep, dean of the College of New Jersey’s School of Business, and a pyramid scheme critic, told Bloomberg earlier this year that “in terms of sending clear signals to the industry, the F.T.C. has done worse than nothing since 1979. It sends confusing signals that have in no way helped us understand how to identify a multilevel marketing company that may be a pyramid scheme.”
My wife started to sell this stuff. After a few months, everything in our house was Amway crap, bought with my money at ridiculous prices. My family could not talk with her without her mentioning Amway in every breath. In an attempt to discover what was going on, I went with her to an Amway seminar. Around a thousand people all screaming and shouting “fired up” and cheering the pompus rich asses paraded on stage as Diamond distributos. After the show I went around back and see that these “Diamonds” drove old beat-up cars. I saw how easy it is to brainwash people at cult meetings.

[12]Amway gives some idea of real chances for success in its “Amway Business Review” pamphlet, which the FTC requires it provide to all prospects. The “Business Review” is an ingenious mixture of mandated honesty and obfuscatory spin: The average monthly gross income for “active” distributors, for instance, is revealed to be a meager $65 a month; but the “Review” leaves out the median income and the net profit, both of which would probably be negative. Likewise, it states that “2 percent of all ‘active’ distributors who sponsor others and approximately 1 percent of all ‘active’ distributors met Direct Distributor qualification requirements during the survey period.” From this, it derives the optimistic conclusion that “once again, the survey demonstrates a substantial increase in achievement for those who share the business with others.” Increase implies that there are some non-sharing distributors who succeed; an alternate reading of the statistics would be that all distributors try to share, none succeed without sharing, but only half are able to share. It’s also a measure of Amway’s PR savvy that every article I’ve seen (even the critical ones) that mentions the number of Directs uses the 2 percent, rather than the more accurate 1 percent, figure.


The compensation plan is called a “stairstep breakaway,” which requires the business rep to effectively rebuild a leg once it has reached what’s called Platinum status (7500 points). Basically, legs break off once they qualify and the commissions turn into 4% royalties instead of commissioned payouts of ~30%. I asked a former Amway emerald once what it was like having his first leg break-off and his reply was: “it’s awful, you really know how to ask painful questions don’t you.” He went on to explain his commissions dropped by at least 80% when they turned into “royalties.” It should be noted that the royalties technically disappear if the volume in the leg drops below 7500 points, so it’s not really a “permanent” royalty unless you maintain your volume. It is in essence a “punishing” compensation plan that forces you to rebuild a leg once it reaches this trigger volume, effectively causing you to “not” want others to pass you up.
What this simple example tells us is that it is difficult to keep appointing more and more distributors. This is similar to a Ponzi scheme, where for the scheme to keep going more and more newer investors need to keep coming in, so that the older investors whose money is falling due can be paid off. The trouble of course is that that the number of people is not infinite, as the above example shows us.

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The prospect is alarming enough that Charles Paul Conn, in Promises to Keep, works hard to prove it’ll never happen. “The reality,” he tells us, “is entirely different from what might be predicted by a statistician with a slide rule.” He points to the millions of likely untapped prospects—youths, retirees, downsized professionals, foreigners—although he fails to acknowledge that recruiting them would only make the Business hungrier. More plausibly, he adds that Amway is a small part of the population and will stay that way. The Business’s high dropout rate, he explains, though “often cited as a negative factor, actually serves to keep the pool of potential distributors large.” In other words, Amway’s salvation is its high rate of failure.
Dick DeVos, on stage with his wife, echoed her sentiments with a lament of his own. “The church—which ought to be, in our view, far more central to the life of the community—has been displaced by the public school,” Dick DeVos said. “We just can think of no better way to rebuild our families and our communities than to have that circle of church and school and family much more tightly focused and built on a consistent worldview.”
It was hard enough to get people to sign up for Amway. My parents, in describing their experience, said that most people had heard of the company and believed it was a pyramid scheme. In fact, part of my parents’ strategy for ‘showing The Plan’ was that they didn’t even tell people it was Amway until the very end of their presentation – then they signed them up on the spot. If they couldn’t sign them up right then, they invited them to a meeting. Most of the time, even though they told them not to talk to anybody about Amway before the meeting, the prospect would go to their brother-in-law, who would tell them it was crap. ‘And if they make it to the meeting, this guy’ – the creepy guy in the upline – ‘stands up there and is a complete ass,’ says my dad. ‘And the people that you encouraged and cajoled, they take a look at you and say, ‘What?’ And then they don’t return your phone call.’
Rolling Stone's Bob Moser reported that former Amway CEO and co-founder Richard DeVos is connected with the Dominionist political movement in the United States. Moser states that DeVos was a supporter of the late D. James Kennedy, giving more than $5 million to Kennedy's Coral Ridge Ministries.[91][92][93] DeVos was also a founding member and two-time president of the Council for National Policy, a right-wing Christian organization.[94]
My uplines’ despair made me reluctant to add to their failure. But I had stayed in too long already. Having run out of other things to buy, I had resorted to subjecting my cat to Amway pet food. And I began to sense that when Josh and Sherri looked at me, they—in their last-ditch hopes—saw Diamonds. Before I disappeared from their lives, however, I accompanied them to one last Rally.
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