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Wednesday, 18 April 2018

LYONESS: Loyalty Card Accepted at Woking Council and ARGOS - Scheme or Scam?




Woking Borough Council in the UK, launched a Loyalty Card Scheme in April 2017.






The Loyalty scheme is run by a company called 'LYONESS'.




LYONESS/LYCONET describe themselves on their corporate page as:

'Lyoness Europe AG has been authorised by Cashback World to expand a part of the global network of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), which belongs to the myWorld group of companies, with the help of independent sales partners. To this end, Lyoness markets the Cashback Solutions’ customer loyalty programmes, that grant SMEs innovative opportunities to retain loyal customers and acquire new ones. Lyoness Europe AG has been authorised by Cashback World to expand a part of the global network of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), which belongs to the myWorld group of companies, with the help of independent sales partners. To this end, Lyoness markets the Cashback Solutions’ customer loyalty programmes, that grant SMEs innovative opportunities to retain loyal customers and acquire new ones. Simultaneously, Lyoness promotes a part of the international Shopping Community Cashback World, that allows its Members to save money on their daily purchases.'
Together with its partners, Lyoness is active in 43 countries across the globe and currently supports 8 million shoppers and 80,000 Loyalty Merchants in diverse sectors.. Simultaneously, Lyoness promotes a part of the international Shopping Community Cashback World, that allows its Members to save money on their daily purchases.'


The local paper were very enthusiastic, and wrote this article on their front page:





Lets Shop and Save.
Exclusive by Stuart Flitton


WOKING could become a pioneer in hosting a groundbreaking international loyalty card scheme that combines financial benefits to shoppers, businesses and charities.
The proposed scheme would involve shoppers signing up for the Woking Loyalty Card Programme with shops and other businesses in the town centre. 

The card, run by International company Lyoness Management, is available in Britain but Woking Borough Council would be the first local authority in the country to team up with Lyoness.
The scheme is free to shoppers, who could get cashback up to 5% that would go into their bank accounts and also gain loyalty points. Businesses would get 0.5% on all transactions using the cards they issue, not only in Woking but in any of the 47 countries around the world where the card is accepted.
Woking Borough Council would also receive 0.5% of all transactions, which will benefit good causes through the Woking Community Foundation.
The proposed plan is to be put forward tonight (23rd March 2017) to the council executive, which will be asked to recommend that the full council appoints Lyoness to run the programme at it's next meeting on 6th April (2017).
Participating businesses will have to buy an electronic devise to process card transactions and pay a small monthly fee, but will benefit, not only directly from the money back on transactions, but by increased custom and marketing generated by the card.
It is believed that other loyalty schemes in neighbouring boroughs have been considered but dismissed on cost grounds, whereas the Lyoness version, which will be known as the Woking Loyalty Card Programme if it receives the backing of the full council, is seen as costing the authority very little, whie offering widespread benefits.
It be managed by the Councils Business Liason team as part of it's business engagement duties.
The draft plan involves the scheme being intoduced initially to the town centre, and then to other parts of the borough, with the hope that surrounding local authorities will see the advantages and join in.
It is believed that some local authorities in London are watching the planned Woking scheme closely.
Business Liason portfolio holder Cllr Saj Hussain said: 'This would be great - it will help put Woking on the map as the card will be available globally - as far apart as Australia, Dubai and elsewhere. With the benefits to businesses, shoppers and good causes, it is a win-win situation. I hope the executive and council agrees and look forward to this coming to the town.' 



But 'LYONESS' have been in the spotlight for many years, in many countries, with accusations being made that it's simply a pyramid scam.
Lyoness were the subject of a court case by the Consumer Watchdog ACCC in Australia in 2014:






'THE consumer watchdog is taking a popular loyalty card company to court for allegedly operating a pyramid selling scheme.
Lyoness, an Austrian company founded in 2003, operates a ‘cashback’ scheme which provides rebates to members who shop through a Lyoness portal, use its vouchers or present their Lyoness card at participating retailers.
A number of large brands participate in the Lyoness Loyalty Program, including Vintage Cellars, Overland, Oakley, Microsoft, First Choice Liquor, Liquorland, DealsDirect, Tyrepower and Barbeques Galore.
According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, although Lyoness has been investigated by regulators in other countries, this is the first court action taken against the company alleging that the Lyoness Loyalty Program constitutes a pyramid scheme.
The ACCC also claims the conduct by Lyoness breached laws against ‘referral selling’, where a consumer is induced to buy goods or services by the promise of a commission or rebate contingent on a later event.'

'...ACCC chairman Rod Sims told news.com.au: “The old days of simple pyramid selling don’t exist anymore, understandably. They’re complex schemes. The judgement we make at a high level is whether your money essentially comes from signing up other people rather than selling something of substance.”
'...the ACCC alleges that the Lyoness scheme also offers commissions to members who recruit new members who make a down payment on future shopping.
According to Mr Sims, Lyoness had around 50,000 members in Australia as of May this year. “Our concern was that this scheme is growing rapidly — by the nature of a pyramid it can,” he said.
The ‘premium’ membership, under which members can participate in what the ACCC claims is the pyramid recruitment side of the scheme, costs $3000.
“$3000 is a good number, but there are all sorts of inducements and a lot of pressure on members to spend more and more money in the scheme,” he said.


The court judgement however, went in Lyoness's favour:

“The manner in which pyramid selling schemes operate…is complex and elusive. The present Lyoness Loyalty Program is no exception,” said Justice Flick.

ACCC chairman, Rod Sims, said: “The judgment echoed some of the concerns the ACCC had with the scheme, in particular its complexity and the inducements that were held to prospective members”.

“The ACCC will continue to investigate schemes that encourage consumers to recruit new members. We will take action where appropriate to ensure consumers are not drawn into schemes where the financial benefits held out to induce potential members to join up rely substantially on the recruitment of further new members into the scheme,” Sims said.


LYONESS were also investigated by the Norwegian Gaming Board in 2013, and then again in 2018.  

'... the Lottery Authority has assessed whether Lyoness is an illegal pyramid-like sales system pursuant to section 16, second paragraph, of the Lottery Act.
In the assessment, we have assumed that revenues from Lyoness’s business in Norway are mainly from the acquisition of participants, and not from sales or consumption of goods, services or other benefits.'

'Notification of resolution means that all repatriation of participants and loyalty companies to CashBack World and Lyconet, and all sales and use of benefit cards, discount coupons, customer shares, gift cards, promotional materials, seminars and other products in the workplace must be terminated.'

On January 11th 2018 , the Norwegion Lottery Authority concluded that  Lyoness  was indeed a pyramid scam and banned LyonessEurope AG and Lyoness Norway AS, from operating in Norway.
Seeming to disassociate themselves from these accusations, 'LYONESS UK LTD' have changed their name in the UK to: 'My World UK'.



I emailed Woking Borough Council to ask if the scheme was still up and running, or had it closed down, and this was their reply: 

Dear Tara,
Thank you for your email. Although Woking Borough Council supports the Woking Loyalty Scheme, we do not run it. The scheme is currently seeking businesses to offer the card and there is a plan to start distributing loyalty cards to the general public. So no, it has not closed down. 
Any further detail you may require can be obtained from Jonathan Lytle, cced in above. 

Kind regards 

Chris Norrington

Business Liaison Manager | Business Liaison |


Woking Borough Council, Civic Offices, Gloucester Square, Woking, Surrey, GU21 6YL
DDI: 01483 743 900 | Mobile: 07768 294 138 | Webwww.woking.gov.uk | Twitter: @wokingcouncil
For general enquiries: 01483 755855

So I contacted Jonathan, pretending to be a prospective Merchant of the 'Cashback World' card:

Hello Jonathan,
Could you please tell me how many people/businesses have signed up to this scheme? 
Has Woking made any money from it yet?
Thanks,
Tara.

And he kindly replied, very quickly:


Good evening Tara
I am very pleased to see you taking an interest in the programme, thank you for the contact.
May I ask if you are a resident in Woking or perhaps run a business ?  I will be very pleased to understand your particular interest and will be very happy to respond accordingly.
I look forward to hearing from you.
With thanks again, and
Kind regards

Jonathan

Jonathan Lytle
Woking Loyalty

D 01483 610610
T 020 3451 8515


'Hi Jonathan, 
... I believe businesses have to purchase a terminal to accept these loyalty cards? I would really like to know how many members of this scheme you currently have and the costs involved with it? Have you got some literature you could email me?'

From: Jonathan Lytle <jonathan@wokingloyalty.com>
Sent: 17 April 2018 16:07
To:
Subject: Re: The Woking Loyalty Card Programme

Hello Tara

That sounds exciting and of course I will be pleased to tell you more. Please send me best telephone number to reach you on for us to explore this together. I have will be pleased to find out more about your plans, how the loyalty programme might work for you, explaining the processes to turn this into an opportunity for you and your business. 

Many thanks
Jonathan

Hi Jonathan,
Thank you for your quick response.
I've been doing some research on the company and have a couple of questions for you.
  1. This scheme is paid for by merchants and it has three entry levels. Has Woking paid any money to join...?
  2. If I joined the scheme at the basic level of £400, how many cards would that give me to distribute, and when I ran out, how much does it cost to get some more? 
Many thanks,
Tara.

As yet, I have had no replies to any of my questions, which is a little odd since they were very keen to help me initially. Hopefully, he will reply to my initial questions very soon, because I have a lot more questions to ask him. Watch this space ...


The Scheme:
The Woking Loyalty Card scheme is free to Woking shoppers, and points can be earned without ever handing over a penny, which in theory, sounds great.

But it's the affiliate scheme associated with the points system that looks suspect to me.

'Lyconet' have a very complicated points system that's brilliantly deciphered here:
http://behindmlm.com/companies/lyoness/lyconet-review-unit-commissions-that-dont-add-up/

Put simply: The points you earn from shopping can be used to qualify for affiliate commissions. And if you bring in people under you, you receive commissions when they earn points. And they in turn, earn commissions when they bring in more people...and so on, and so on. So the scheme is the shape of a triangle, the base just keeps getting bigger and bigger with every new layer of referrals.

'Cashback World'
Cashback World sells three types of packages to Merchants, who then get varying degrees of benefits, including Point Of Sale materials, Loyalty Cards, Support Services etc. The Merchants can then give their cards away free to their customers, who can then use the card in other participating Merchant stores, earning cashback/points from any purchases. The Merchant also makes money every time their card is used at another Merchants store. 

There are the three levels of packages:


LIGHT - which has a one-off payment of £400.
BASIC- which costs either £31.90 a month OR  a one-off charge of £720.00, and
PROFESSIONAL - which costs either £71.90 a month or a whopping one-off fee of £1040.

But in order for Merchants to re-coup their investment, they have to have a lot of repeat customers into there store, on a regular basis. Because not only are they paying (monthly) for a terminal to process these loyalty cards, they're also obliged to give discounts on their stock, which reduces their already wafer-thin profit margins.

If every single shop/business in Woking used this Loyalty Card, they would all have to give a discount on every single item brought. How is that economically viable? Isn't this loyalty card more likely to drive prices up, than offer savings?
(If any Merchants from Woking are reading this, I'd love to hear your viewpoint and the reality of how this scheme works. Please leave your comments at the end of this post.)

The Merchants:

Cashback World claims to have over 80,000 merchants listed, and have logos from major retailers like Tesco, Morrisons and Marks & Spencer on their website.


So I did a little checking, and guess what?
Marks and Spencer (M&S) DON'T take them.




Neither do MORRISONS:



I haven't had a reply from Tesco's yet, but as Tesco has their own very successful loyalty card, 'CLUBCARD', I'm going to safely assume that the answer will be a 'no' also. 

So why are Lyoness displaying famous logos on their 'Cashback World' website, claiming that household names accept them, when they don't?

And interestingly, the ARGOS logo is not displayed on the cashback site, but Argos do accept the card:





p.s The 80,000 merchant post was snipped on Monday 16th April.
Today, Wednesday 18th April, they seem to have accumulated an extra 10,000 merchants from somewhere, as now they're claiming 90,000!






So is 'Lyoness/Cashback World' a scam or a legitimate company?
The greatest source of information on any company, is from it's consumers.
And these Lyoness consumers aren't very complimentary about them:

https://lyoness.pissedconsumer.com/real-scam-201802251197439.html



:

Lyoness on Television

Lyoness was pitched on the Canadian version of Dragons Den, and I think you
can probably guess how that turned out:



The Lyoness Website:
https://www.lyoness.com





The Cashback World website has a disclaimer at the bottom:


* The margin benefits are dependant on the products purchased and the Loyalty Merchant. All hereto information on this website is therefore without guarantee.



 The Lyoness website mentions the word 'investment' quite prominently.








WE HAVE SOME QUESTIONS FOR YOU:


  • Would you like to offer attractive added value without a large investment?
  • Would you like to cut your marketing costs but still run successful marketing campaigns?
  • Fed up of struggling against large multi-national businesses?
  • Keen to learn more about your customers as well as your market and its potential?
If CashWorld are selling their packages as an 'INVESTMENT' shouldn't they be registered as such? Maybe that's something the Financial Conduct Authority can look at?
https://www.fca.org.uk



In conclusion, if Woking Borough Council and a national retailer like ARGOS accept the Lyoness 'Cashback World' Loyalty Card, then we have to presume that their respective legal departments would have looked at the card and scrutinized the company issuing it? 

But I'm going to agree with the Norwegian Authorities and the Canadian Dragons and say:
 'Thanks, but I won't be investing'! 

20th April 2018 
I found this blog link today which is full of heartbreaking stories of people losing money from Lyoness. How can anybody in their right minds believe that Lyoness is anything other than a scam?
http://cc-lyoness.blogspot.co.uk/







Sunday, 11 March 2018

Frank Calabro Jr. Gets A Cease and Desist Order and SEARCH WARRANT EXECUTED

(updated 16th March 2018)




The State of North Carolina has served Frank Calabro Jr. with a Cease and Desist Order. 
It's lovely to see the Authorities going after individuals who make a living out of recruiting people into these Ponzi Scams. Let's hope many more follow.

https://www.sosnc.gov/vs2010/Soskb.Web.Content/media/1602/2018-03-08-temp-cd-frank-edward-calabro_redacted.pdf





These are just a few of the Ponzi Scams he's been promoting: 

My Advertising Pays:





Traffic Monsoon:



USI TECH:





 Four Corners Alliance:



Frank has a Three Step Formula to success. The Power Lead System. 





In this video he explains how he gets so many leads, and what techniques he uses to get people to give him their email addresses, so he can 'print money'.





13th March 2018
A search warrant was executed at Franks house on March 8th and numerous contents were seized including 
Gold and Silver bars and $50,000 in cash:




















16th March 2018
The Cease and Desist is an 'Administrative Law' ( like a Civil Law) from a regulatory authority. In North Carolina the Department of the Secretary of State has Special Agents with law enforcement authority who conduct the Criminal investigations. So ,there's an administrative investigation and a criminal investigation. They run "parallel" to each other but are, in fact, separate and apart.
All funds that are recovered in the Securities Fraud Investigation are usually returned to investors (if found that they suffered a loss) and are returned through a Receiver appointed by  a Judge. The Government will not profit from any assets seized.
So, if YOU'VE lost money through Frank, watch this space, you MAY be liable for a return of funds from any one of the scams he promoted.



This story is moving really quickly so watch this space
for further updates!


The State of North Carolina has also stopped another PONZI in it's tracks - 
'POWER MINING POOL'
and has issued a Cease and Desist Order order as well. 
Those guys have been REAL busy! Go, go North Carolina!

Friday, 2 February 2018

J.Ryan Conley Bravely Admits He Has Alzheimer's

The self proclaimed Leader of Futurenet in the USA, J. Ryan Conley, has bravely admitted to early onset Alzheimers and Frontal Temporal Lobe Dementia. 
I know that because he posted the admission on Facebook, so it must be true. 
It would be a really disgusting thing to lie about, wouldn't it?

Posted 11th January 2018:



'Here is me getting stem cell injections to my brain while wide awake in Dominican Republic to help heal my early onset Alzheimer's and frontal temporal lobe dementia. I am making this coin to help put an end to dementia and related neuro conditions.'


Ryan went to the Regen Centre in the Dominican Republic  in June 2017 
to have an injection of 200million stem cells. And luckily somebody was there to film a video of the procedure on the centres private computer.



Ryan has been suffering from depression and ADHD for years:



...and has tried many pills in the hope of a cure:

...which he's happy to recommend you buy. 

But his preferred treatment at the moment is Stem Cell Therapy, which is used for a variety of purposes.
This quote is from the Regen Centres website: 

'At Regen Center, adult repair stem cells are being used to heal and improve a variety of conditions such as autism, Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis, COPD, dementia, diabetes, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis (CCSVI), Parkinson’s, traumatic brain injury, stroke and others. They are also used for anti-aging and cosmetic purposes...' 


Because the stem cells come from your own body, a stem cell treatment won't do you any harm, but will it cure Alzheimers? No.

'Alzheimer’s disease is a type of irreversible, progressive brain disease that attacks and destroys the brain’s cells, which results in a loss of memory and other essential cognitive functions. Symptoms of the disease worsen over the years and are eventually terminal.'
'Alzheimer's disease is a progressive condition, which means the symptoms develop gradually and become more severe over the course of several years. It affects multiple brain functions.
The first sign of Alzheimer's disease is usually minor memory problems. 
As the condition develops, memory problems become more severe and further symptoms can develop, such as:


  • Difficulty concentrating and planning things
  • Memory loss and confusion
  • Short attention span
  • Lack of motivation
  • Depression
  • Personality, mood and behavioral changes
  • Delusions or hallucinations
  • Incontinence
  • Muscle weakness, stiffness, or paralysis
  • Slow and unsteady movements
  • Trembling in arms and legs
  • Sleeping difficulties
  • Aggression and frustration.
As well as Alzheimers, Ryan also has Frontotemporal Dementia which has the following symptoms:

'Frontotemporal dementia occurs when nerve cells in the frontal and/or temporal lobes of the brain die, and the pathways that connect the lobes change. Some of the chemical messengers that transmit signals between nerve cells are also lost. Over time, as more and more nerve cells die, the brain tissue in the frontal and temporal lobes shrinks.
When the frontal and/or temporal lobes are damaged in this way, this causes the symptoms of FTD. These include changes in personality and behaviour, and difficulties with language. These symptoms are different from the memory loss often associated with more common types of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease. As FTD is a less common form of dementia, many people (including some health professionals) may not have heard of it'.

All these debilitating symptoms at such a young age, must be truly terrifying for Ryan.
But somehow he's managing to overcome his ongoing memory loss, personality disorder and language problems, to become the No.1 FutureNet Leader in America. And Ryan is using FutureNet to promote his own coin - STEMCELL COIN.









The symptoms of Alzheimer's, particularly memory loss, make driving particularly hazardous. 
Which is why I'm puzzled that Ryan brought himself a Mercedes car? 









But then again, he brought the car a year before his diagnosis and stem cell therapy, so he probably didn't know how sick he was then. But he must be having severe memory loss problems by now,  which will affect his ability to drive:

Quote:
'...dementia is listed as a medical condition that the licensing agencies need to know about. As dementia progresses it has greater effects on all these abilities. As a result, everyone with dementia will eventually lose the ability to drive safely. The time at which this happens will be different for each person, but most drivers with Alzheimer's disease stop within about three years of the first symptoms. This is often in the moderate or middle stage of dementia but, with some types of dementia, common early symptoms mean it might be sooner. A person with these symptoms will not be able to drive safely.'

By my calculations, Ryan must have begun to experience symptoms in at least 2016, so his ability to drive must now be questionable. Thankfully, because of Ryans numerous income streams, he can comfortably afford a chauffeur as his disease progresses.

But to be diagnosed with Alzheimers  in the first place, he must have been showing symptoms of memory loss.  So for posterity, I thought I'd better list some of the great companies he's been involved with, so he can never forget his varied career:

Isagenix, Viewtrakr, Staged, Buzztrakr, Kannaway, Brain Abundance, Ingreso Cybernetico, Wake Up Now, YOBSN, Jeunesse, IQKonnect, TSU, Elevate Solar, Solavei, OneCoin, MMM Global, BitClub Network, FutureNet, DasCoin, Omnio Tech, USI Tech  and Trade Coin Club.


2014 

'Kannaway' is not a Scam!' says Ryan. Phew, that's a relief.... 





...because he has 19,100 people who'd be pretty upset if it was:



In 2015, Ryan was promoting Jeunesse:




...which faced allegations of being a Pyramid scam:




...which was recently dismissed 'without prejudice'.



(The inclusion of the term 'without prejudice' in a judgment of dismissal ordinarily indicates the absence of a decision on the merits and leaves the parties free to litigate the matter in a subsequent action...)


Trade Coin Club
Ryan adds 'Trade Coin Club'  to his multiple income stream in early 2017.
Here he is getting an office tour: 





But it doesn't seem to have ended well. 'Trade Coin' is also a Ponzi Scam. And Kelei Taylor has allegedly walked off with millions of dollars of Ryans money.
But how Ryan earned millions of dollars in Trade Coin from  just ONE sign-up is a real mystery? 




Thankfully though, Ryan is suing Kelie for the return of all that money.  And since he's already sued Microsoft FOUR times already, AND WON, I'm sure his crack legal team will make mincemeat out of her.
Let's hope Ryan is well enough to testify against her in court. 







USI TECH
Another symptom of Alzheimers is a lack of judgement. And poor Ryan has managed to mis-judge a Ponzi, AGAIN!
Here he is telling everybody how amazing USI TECH is...




But, oops! USI TECH has only been shut down in the USA!
It turns out it's ALSO a Ponzi Scam!





Ryans condition must be getting REAL bad to keep making this many mistakes!
And he's about to make his biggest mistake to date: FUTURENET!

FutureNet is a 100% guaranteed PONZI SCAM. I've been following it closely over the last few months and you can read all about it here:

Ryan has turned his rented Penthouse into a FutureNet recruiting hub and is attracting some well known people. 

People like Tai Lopez, soon to be a FutureNet member - according to Ryan:





And this well known DJ 'Dirty Harry' aka 'Harris J Francis', who says he's checked out FutureNet personally and done plenty of due diligence on them: 





No idea what due diligence he did? Read the sign maybe?

Ryan has also managed to sign up 'Rae Sremmurd', the American HipHop duo
with a No.1 hit called 'Black Beetles'





And former Seattle DJ, Mike Ricker:







And Ryan says 'Richard Sherman (Seattle Seahawks) just made $7,000 in #Bitcoin with us at #FutureNet!'



Ryan looks so well in these photos doesn't he? And he's certainly impressed with the
anti-aging properties of all those stem cells he keeps injecting: 

'I've been getting a ton of compliments lately on how much younger I look since I started injecting 20,000,000 #stemcells each month!
I am willing to bet I am the first person you have ever met that has shot this many stem cells on a regular basis. Yes, I am making myself a test subject for this science so I can change the future of health care for the world via #StemCellCoin.
Who do you know that has shot stem cells? Please tag them below. I would love to hear their story!'

I would have thought though, considering his condition is TERMINAL, he would be a bit more concerned with how these stem cells are relieving his symptoms, rather than
how much younger he's looking?


Ryan has recently shared this video of a genuine Dementia patient, seemingly oblivious to the fact that this cruel disease
has NO cure...



...no matter how many zillions of stem cells he injects.





February 5th 2018
Ryan said he was sponsoring the Superbowl for $45,000!
But unless printing 'FUTURENET' on two jackets and printing out a few leaflets constitutes
'sponsoring', he's lied again.



















...but thankfully people are waking up to him:









15th February 2018








Quote: 'I never once said that I sponsored, you dumb ass! Check yourself'.

Ok Ryan. I checked. Whose the 'dumb ass' now?'





More to follow. Watch this space...