In April 1997 Richard DeVos and his wife, Helen, gave $1 million to the Republican National Committee (RNC), which at the time was the second-largest soft-money donation ever, behind Amway's 1994 gift of $2.5 million to the RNC. In July 1997, Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott and House Speaker Newt Gingrich slipped a last-minute provision into a hotly contested compromise tax bill that granted Amway and four other companies a tax break on their Asian branches that totaled $19 million.
The forecast looked pretty grim, and I wasn’t the only one who thought so. My supervisor, Sherri, also seemed to have succumbed to E2020’s mood of millennial angst. As events coordinator for E2020, responsible for making each client’s time in Chicago—from the catered lunch to the after-hours excursion—exceed their expectations,” Sherri’s job was already very twenty-first century in its focus on pampering those with means. She was perfect for the role, a seamless blend of prim professional and girlish emotion-worker. Tall, blond, and angular, she had deep-set Nordic eyes that gave her an air of maturity—unless she was excited, when they would widen improbably, revealing the spirit of a child lost in wonder. One minute she was commanding a team of caterers, the next she was dissolving into giggles, waving her arms and squealing with excitement. On top of her sixty-plus hours a week at E2020, she was improving herself with MBA classes at night; she, too, was seeking some way off the wobbly treadmill of income-from-wages-salaries-and-tips. When Amway called, touting a future that combined business ownership with 100 Percent Empowered Consumerism, she was ready.
Brad spoke in parables: There was Brad’s father-in-law, who, upon being given a brand-new souped-up truck, sat down and wept. After a few years, the “newness wore off,” so Brad again bought him the latest model. And again his father-in-law sat down and wept. (Brad’s own fluid dynamics were more spectacular: When he first saw the jazzed-up truck, he admitted, “urine streamed down” his pant legs.)
The Amway approach supposedly avoids impersonal door-to-door sales, as each distributor need only sell directly to a small customer base of friends and family. Business “growth”—and an ascent to the flashier “bonus levels” (Ruby, Emerald, Diamond, Executive Diamond, Double Diamond, Crown Ambassador)—comes mostly through expanding one’s downline. In theory, this odd marketing system ensures that benefits accrue not to Madison Avenue slicksters, but to ordinary folk capitalizing on their close-knit community ties—a scheme that seemingly reflects the small-town, Protestant populism of Amway’s co-founders, Rich DeVos and Jay VanAndel.
The FTC’s ruling that Amway is not a pyramid scheme is based partly on the “70-10 Rule”: To qualify for Performance Bonuses based on downlines’ sales, an Amway distributor is required to sell, according to Amway’s Business Reference Manual, “at wholesale and for retail at least 70 percent of the total amount of products he bought during a given month”—this is supposed to prevent “inventory loading,” the forced purchase of unsalable merchandise. Amwayers are also required, for the Performance Bonus, to sell to at least ten retail customers in a given month, which ensures that real business is being conducted.
To test these claims I took my new Amway wholesale price list down to the local supermarket for a price comparison. As it turned out, Amway wholesale prices were only slightly better than supermarket retail prices, although a few Amway products, like freezer bags, were significantly cheaper. And this was giving The Business the benefit of many doubts: I factored in its claim that its detergents are more “concentrated” than other brands; I compared Amway with high-quality brand-name products, not store brands or generics; and I compared only regular prices, ignoring the fact that the supermarket, unlike Amway, always has items on sale (not to mention coupons). The same results obtained at the local drugstore in comparisons of vitamins and cosmetics. All in all, the 30 percent Basic Discount was nowhere to be found.
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.
Because of this, the vast majority of IBOs who join Amway end up making very little (if any) money. For example: Taking a look at page 11 of the company’s online brochure, they claim that only 46% of IBOs were active during 2010, and of those, the average monthly income was only $202. Furthermore, out of 300,000 active IBOs during the 2010 calendar year, only 0.25% achieved Platinum status, 0.08% achieved Founders Emerald, and 0.02% achieved Founders Diamond or higher.
Athletes who have promoted Quixtar or its products include Jamaican Olympic sprinter Asafa Powell, American pole vaulter Jennifer Stuczynski, American Olympic sprinter Sanya Richards, U.S. Olympian Shaun White, Cinematographer Wes Anderson,Chinese Olympic hurdler Liu Xiang; Brazilian soccer player Ronaldinho, heavyweight boxer Evander Holyfield, and Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne. Tim Foley, a member of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, is a Quixtar Founders Crown Ambassador.
Amway is unethical way of making money. Their representative lure you to this smartly designed plan. Amway’s representatives misguide and misinform like any other business or a product’s sale representatives. which is attractive to listen for the first time with the ‘Entrepreneur” motto. But it is another way of making money leaving you frustrated in the end. I advise every one not to join this unethical product promotion. Parent company is becoming richer,leaving you as ”partner” (as it’s trained representatives claim) in total despair in the end. It is your hard earned money,think smartly before lending it to someone’s hand.
Enter Jay Van Andel, Amway’s other cofounder. Jay had a 1929 Model A, which Rich had noticed both driving down his street and also parked outside his high school. ‘I thought a ride in this car would surely beat the bus, a streetcar, or walking,’ says Rich. The rest is as saccharine as you would expect: good American boys working hard to make their dreams come true – an adventure full of family values and sturdy bootstraps with which one can pull himself up. It begins with the heartwarming story of their first joint business venture, running a pilot school, then segues into a comedy-of-errors trip on a sailboat – a typical masculine coming-of-age experience rooted in good old-fashioned American values like cooperation, perseverance, and leadership.
‘As long as you’re a golf member, you’re open to playing all the tournaments and games,’ Dale says to me. ‘There’s something for the ladies, and then if couples play together, we have a couples’ golf on Sundays. We have a senior group, and then a young under-forty-year-old guy group.’ He shows me a schedule pinned to a corkboard near the door. ‘These are kind of the core golf groups. And then we have a formal Men’s Golf Association as well, one tournament per month. If they win that tournament, there are parking spots up for grabs, if you want a nice parking spot – or some trophies. You know, when you love a game and you watch it on TV, to be able to still play it and go out there with a large group of guys, and then win a tournament? These guys are having a blast. They feel like they’re on the PGA Tour. That’s what it’s all about.’
Nowadays, nearly all Amwayers identify with a “distributor group.” Dream Night, in fact, was arranged not by Amway, but by World Wide Dreambuilders LLC, which is constituted by the downlines of Crown Ambassador Bill Britt. These groups, which do the heavy lifting of building and inspiring downlines, have no legal connection to Amway (as indicated by the disclaimers on the back of tickets for Dream Night and every other World Wide function I attended: “This event is produced and offered independently of Amway Corporation and has not been reviewed or endorsed by Amway”). The corporation uses the legal independence of distributor groups to its advantage. In a class-action lawsuit brought by former Amwayers charging Amway Corporation, World Wide head Bill Britt, and Dexter Yager with fraud and price-fixing, Amway claimed that it was itself, in effect, a victim of Britt and Yager’s tactics—and thus not liable. (The case has since been settled out of court.)
We also were in business in Amway and we DID make money. We worked hard and earned it. BUT, as with any business, especially a direct marketing, we had uplines (the people above us) who were cheats and liars and only wanted money for themselves, not others. They in effect, stopped us at a certain level from making anymore money. We changed to a different group, but by then our dynamic was gone and we couldn't do much. As with any business, NOT just Amway, you have to deal with people. And THAT is the problem. My husband got tired of fighting and not getting anywhere and he quit. I am still in it because, let's face it, the products ARE the BEST. We started sometime around 1986. We met some fantastic people, we had the time of our lives, and it WAS our life. I missed it terribly, and I still miss alot of those people. But through it, we came away with MANY many good things learned, and still do have some very close friends from it. My upline now is my VERY best friend in the world, more like a sister. We are older now and have plenty of money for ourselves, so our interest is not in making money at this point, but simply living our wonderful lives now. If you are out to make money, you CAN do it in Amway. But the right way is the way to do it. Don't cheat, be good to your people, and really believe in what you have and what you can do.
From the beginning, designers focused on creating a sustainable site; providing water efficiency; optimizing energy and atmosphere protection; conserving materials and resources; monitoring indoor environmental quality and health; and selecting environmentally preferred operations and maintenance. These elements combine to create one of the most environmentally friendly, high-performing professional arenas in the country.
Amway's eSpring water filter was introduced in 2000. According to Amway, it was the first system to combine a carbon block filter and ultraviolet light with electronic-monitoring technology in the filter cartridge and it became the first home system to achieve certification for ANSI/NSF Standards 42, 53, and 55. According to Amway, eSpring was the first water treatment system to receive certification for all fifteen NSF/ANSI 401 contaminants which include pharmaceuticals, pesticides and herbicides. The company also claims that, in addition to these 15 contaminants, eSpring is certified for more than 145 potential contaminants, including lead and mercury.
Their first product was called Frisk, a concentrated organic cleaner developed by a scientist in Ohio. DeVos and Van Andel bought the rights to manufacture and distribute Frisk, and later changed the name to LOC (Liquid Organic Cleaner). They subsequently formed the Amway Sales Corporation to procure and inventory products and to handle sales and marketing plans, and the Amway Services Corporation to handle insurance and other benefits for distributors. In 1960, they purchased a 50% share in Atco Manufacturing Company in Detroit, the original manufacturers of LOC, and changed its name to Amway Manufacturing Corporation. In 1964, the Amway Sales Corporation, Amway Services Corporation, and Amway Manufacturing Corporation merged to form the Amway Corporation.
I was signed up, received no support from my upline, and yes although Amway has good quality products you need a substantial amount to sign up and all the marketing materials, rally's etc is expensive. Felt like I needed to be a slave of the company to get ahead. It feels also like you are pushing those above you up rather than them pulling you up. Feels like you are working for your upline's wealth rather than truly prospering yourself...
Some friends of mine are into Amway & are showing it to me. I am skeptical, but as I look into it things are looking good. There's some points in one of the first books you read that appear to contradict what the uppers are saying, but that's where that "Ask Questions" part comes in. Anyone can make a company look bad, either by accident or for lolz. Those that only buy their own product aren't necessarily doing it wrong, but they won't make as much as thewy would 'hiring' a 'team'. Essentially the distributor gets points for product sold, then paid on total point value (PV). Anyone can surpass their mentors, so not shaped like a pyramid :)
The centerpiece of any Rally is the life-story told by the guest of honor, emphasizing the depths of his pre-Amway rut and his resurrection through The Business. That evening’s featured guest, Executive Diamond Bill Hawkins, however, was too arrogant even to feign the requisite humility in his testimonial. He had been great all his life: a talented musician in one of Minneapolis’s best bands, a brilliant school teacher, a voracious reader, a charming companion with hundreds of loyal friends, and an unbelievably prodigious drinker of beer (about which he was now “ashamed”). When he saw The Plan and realized that he was much smarter than the guy showing it, he knew that his ship had finally come in: Here, at last, was something that would adequately reward his greatness.
Rich and Jay go into business together selling Nutrilite vitamins, an early multilevel marketing scheme for which Jay’s second cousin and his parents are already distributors. When Nutrilite goes kaput in 1948 after an FDA crackdown on their ‘excessive claims’ regarding the products’ nutritional values (about which Rich only says, ‘Until then, there had been no official government position on what type of claims could be made about dietary supplements’), he and Jay strike out on their own – the American way. They can do it! We know they can!
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.
THIS IS ALL CRAP, EVERYTHING THIS GUY/GIRL IS SAYING IS ALL FAKE ESPECIALLY BECAUSE I AM A CROWN IN THE BUSINESS AND BECAUSE HE IS SAYING THAT IT IS NOT A PYRAMID SCHEME. ESPECIALLY, BECAUSE I HAVE AN UPLINE THAT IS IN THE LEVEL EMERALD AND I AM IN CROWN, EVEN THOUGH HE INVITED ME I PASSED HIM, SO THIS IS ALL CRAP IF ANYONE ONE IS INTERESTED IN THIS WONDERFUL OPERTUNITY CONTACT ME.
Sales pitch though it was, E2020 subscribed to a worldview that’s now ubiquitous in the wider culture. Its central metaphor was overheatedly Darwinian—the global economy as nature run riot, lush for the dominant, unforgiving for the slow to adapt—but also strikingly theological. In the next millennium, a resurgent Market would act as the vengeful (invisible) hand of God, laying waste to the Second Wave’s many Towers of Babel—government planning, welfare states, unions, warehouses, consolidated factories, even mega-conglomerates. Thus, “progress” required that we bury our arrogant bids for security and clear the ground for a new order of pure Nietzschean struggle.
“We also have the Family Assembly …. When grandchildren turn 16, they are inducted … in a formal ceremony that everyone attends. An aunt or uncle makes a presentation of their achievements, reminds them of their responsibility as they go forward, and affirms them as a member of the Family Assembly. … They are able to vote in the meetings at age 25, after they have met additional qualifications for taking on this added responsibility.”
These businesses sell the hope of getting rich by recruiting recruiters to sell overpriced products that don't move in real markets. The products of any MLM have to be extremely cheap to manufacture and must retail at inflated, unrealistic prices because in effect, the products are simply used to move money into the pyramid scheme. Just remember that there are several hundred MLMs in existence in 2014 and all of them are scams.
About 20 of us showed up and this guy was basically reading the same “save money” script as the guy from 2-3 months earlier. The old guy was from WakeUp now while this new guy was promoting Amway. Unfortunately for this new guy, he found me a few months too late. We sat through the guy’s speech but I told everyone not to join because it was a pyramid scheme. Most listened, some did not. None of them were able to make any profits before they eventually quit!
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.”
After a year in The Business, Josh and Jean were scarcely able to devote eight hours a week to distributing goods and showing The Plan—activities that required a good supply of prospects, customers, and downlines. They were desperate for new leads, also a scarce resource, and regularly alarmed me with proposals that we all go to some public place and mingle. Of course, that would have required overcoming shyness and other gag responses, impediments that Josh, Jean, and Sherri never really overcame (most of their leads seemed either to be family or, like me, coworkers.) They would, on the other hand, devote entire weekends to “recharging their batteries” at First and Second Looks, Seminars, Rallies, and Major Functions (Dream Night, Leadership Weekend, Family Reunion, Free Enterprise Day); meetings that required only insecurity and neediness, which all three had in spades.
Amway allows me to buy health, beauty, and home care products in a fashion that no other site does. It provides multi level marketing which builds a relationship between buyer and seller. However, the thing I would change about this company is to make their service more user friendly. As of right now it is extremely difficult for me to navigate their site to search for items I want. My overall experience for using this company has been rather well thus far. In terms of product selection, there are a large catalog of products that I can choose from. The purchasing process is as streamlined as any other site and the customer service has been impeccable too.
Of the Amway distributors who testified in the case, Rich says, ‘I have nothing against someone who tries Amway and concludes the business is not for them. But I wish they would take responsibility for their own actions instead of trying to blame the business.’ Likewise naysayers and disgruntled former Amway distributors simply do not understand how business works and are at fault for their own failures because they lack faith in their ability to succeed, and thus the necessary determination.