Over the past years, you might have encountered some of the scenarios:
- Random strangers adding you on Facebook and Linkedin, telling you that they have a good business proposal which they would love to offer you.
- Relatives and friends attempting to sell you a certain healthcare product and wished to invite you down to their office for a talk.
In fact, messages like the one below are very common these days on social media.
Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) is NOT LEGAL in Singapore.
Contrary to popular belief, most Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) companies are NOT LEGAL in Singapore. Despite the law that is in place by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, efforts to clamp down on these schemes could have been better.
Three types of companies that are exempted from the Act are:
- Insurance companies
- Master franchises
- Direct selling companies
What is Multi-Level Marketing (MLM)?
- requires participants to pay an upfront charge, or purchase a certain number of the company’s product.
- participants are then promised financial rewards for each additional participant recruited, as well as all new members who are in turn brought in by their recruits – hence the pyramid-like structure.
- As more salespersons are recruited, members are expected to recover their upfront charges and earn sizeable profits.
- MLM scheme eventually fails when they run out of new recruits. The latest recruited salespersons will hence, lose all their upfront charges.
Common traits of illegal MLM
Such companies come in many forms, and many times on products that are really hard to verify or trace.
(eg. Medication that is not found in clinics or hospitals, property investment in Dubai, motivational workshops that encourages recruitment of more friends)
- They promote and hype about how easy it is to get very rich in a very short time
- The so-called product that you are supposed to sell is not something you would normally buy at its price
- To be a member, one is required to invest a sum of money into their scheme of buying an inventory of their products.
Who are the likely victims to illegal MLM?
There are a certain demographics of people who are more likely to fall into the trap of illegal MLMs.
- Students in their polytechnics/JC/University days with little knowledge of entrepreneurship
- Retirees who are not very well-versed on getting information online
Hence, do keep a close watch loved ones to prevent unnecessary monetary losses.
Compilation of MLM Companies in Singapore from forums
- Here’s a list of the more prominent companies that are operating in Singapore that Singaporeans should pay extra attention to.
*Slight possibility that some of the companies might be legal. Always do your own research.
- If you have any bad encounter with any company that is not on the list, do reach out to Seedly!
- One can check if the company is a member of the Direct Selling Association of Singapore here.
|Name of company||Product|
|300 Percent Positive Energy||A workshop-oriented MLM that encourages positive attitudes|
|AmWay||Health, beauty, and home care products.|
|Appco/Cobra group||The Cobra Group is a controversial door-to-door selling and marketing company.|
|BioGlobe||Home water treatment|
|Coslab||Lifestyle package with monthly returns on investment|
|ElusyfGlobal||Supplement called mitos activa and phyto mask|
|Forever Living Products International Inc.||Aloe vera-based drinks and bee-derived cosmetics, nutritional supplements, and personal care products.|
|FrozenAge||Facial cleansers, moisturisers, "deer velvet sprays"|
|GToken||Generic digital token that allows holders to enjoy benefit through in-games/apps purchases.|
|Herbalife||Nutrition supplements, weight management, sports nutrition and personal-care products|
|International Entrepreneurs Program/ ICS Rewards||Closely tied to 300 Percent Positive Energy, Eurocuffz, Cuffz holdings, Kinkang|
|IVAI Wines||Wine investing|
|Nefful (Japan based)||Clothing that produces anion (said to help people with cancer)|
|Neways -> now Modere|
|Riway||Deer placenta health supplement (claim to cure a lot of diseases, even cancer)|
|TupperWare International||TupperWare of course.|
|Ven Vici||Uses Gtoken|
|Young Living||Essential Oils|
*Disclaimer: The above list are MLM companies operating in Singapore. Companies such as Amway and Tupperware are legal and approved by the DSA of Singapore. Consumers should always do their research before coming to a conclusion to join a legal MLM company should he feels the benefit to. One should stay away from illegal MLM companies.