TEAM vs Quixtar: Arbitration enforced?

There’s some hints on the TEAM forum run by TEAM’s PR firm, Ashton Partners, that the judge in the TEAM vs Quixtar "class-action" lawsuit in California has enforced Quixtar’s Arbitration claims. Some quotes -

As the court case is in arbitration, and it is in Quixtar’s best interest to drag it out as long as possible, you may find that a decision from arbitration could take longer than the six months that it would take to resign and follow the existing non-compete.

and later from the same poster -

I too have received my, "The purpose of this letter is to confirm that your independent business has been deleted from our files." statement from Quixtar; unfortunately, I will not be free as soon as you unless Chris and Orrin are successful before March 1th. I will be truly free about two weeks later! I waited until after the California case was sent to arbitration.

There’s been no official comments on the case for quite some time, though various TEAM blogs keep appearing and keep highlighting various affidavit’s from the case. Curiously the affidavit’s often seem to make TEAM’s case worse, but the bloggers ignore this. I’ve tried querying them in their comments, but they’ve turned on "moderation" and none of my questions are appearing.

Anyone know the story, let us know!
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UPDATE: I also found the following on the TEAM forums -

As the court case is in arbitration, and it is in Quixtar’s best interest to drag it out as long as possible, you may find that a decision from arbitration could take longer than the six months that it would take to resign and follow the existing non-compete.

All are by the same blogger. Put simply, it looks like the Team vs Quixtar case is dead, though there’s still a question as to whether this is Quixtar’s arbitration system or a separate one ordered by the judge. Quite obviously the "illegal pyramid" claims didn’t wash with the judge – I doubt he’d refer to arbitration if they did. What I think can virtually be guaranteed is that arbitration will take a lot longer than the 4 months that would have been remaining if TEAM IBOs had simply resigned when this started, rather than (supposedly) wanting the no-compete clause ignored. I say supposedly because I wonder how much of this was all about PR rather than a real legal dispute. Indeed, if the judge thought the case should go to arbitration, there’s almost no chance at all that TEAM will get any significant wins out of this. Even if they get the no-compete annulled (unlikely), it makes little significant difference.

As far as I’m concerned, the case is over. It’s just a matter of waiting to see what TEAM’s leaders choose to do and how successful they are.

UPDATE 2: The same poster as above now says -

I had heard that the California case was going to be arbitrated, but after browsing through the many court documents I have saved, I am not able to find the details of this. I did find the one in Texas where Judge Bush send a case to arbitration, but I am unable to locate documentation on the California case in this regard.

Judge Feess has nothing on his posted calendar at the moment.
Lets all hope that the arbitration was an error and that Judge Feess rules to let us be free!

Another poster adds -

I have seen no offical word that the California case is going to Arbitration. However, I have heard that is the most likely scenerio. If this is the case then Don and Randy by not pulling out would be forced into Arbitration.

So still unconfirmed, but still in my opinion the most likely outcome of the case. Perhaps this poster let the cat out of the bag and then realized he made a mistake?

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International Connection merges with Network 21

Over on AmwayWiki some interesting news was just posted about International Connection, the Amway/Quixtar organization run by Triple Diamonds Brian and Marg Hays.

Apparently on September 21, 2007 International Connection official merged with Network TwentyOne, lead by Founders Crown Ambassadors, Jim & Nancy Dornan.

Years ago I came across some posts on one of the original “critics” websites that revealed a little of the history of Amway/Quixtar “systems”, and in particular International Connection. In the post, the author chides the “critic” for the same type of thing I’ve been talking about for years – considering all “systems” as somehow the same and “cookie-cutter clones”. Here’s the post, from 1995 (yes, the internet did exist then!) –

Historically, for years probably the two biggest Amway los were the Yaeger/Britt and WDA (World Wide Diamond) organizations. WDA was the downline of Crown Ambassadors Dan and Bunny Williams. Both of these organizations are downline from Crown Ambassadors Charlie and Elsie Marsh. Yaeger may be personally sponsored by the Marshs and the Williams’ are sponsored by Triple Diamonds BIll and Jan Campbell who are sposored by the Marshs.

About 5 years ago, as I understand, the Williams decided to semi-retire and cease being the titular head of the line. They decided to plug into Jody Victor whose folks Joe and ? are upline from the Marshs. Jody plugs into Dexter. Some of the WDA Diamonds followed Dan, and some chose not to.

Those who did not, formed International Connection, with a system, a code of ethics, etc.

There are about 6 Diamonds in the US affliated with IC, with several los represented. And they are an eclectic group, certainly not cookie cutter clones.

Some of the Diamonds you may be familiar with who were WDA pins are Kelly and Jan Brown, Mel and Bea Benke, Jim and Juanice Ward, Triples Brian and Marg Hayes (Brian is President of IC), Doubles Lew and Darlene Riggan, Pam and Dorsey Deaton, Pat and John Vaughn, and Executive Diamonds Pat and Beatty Kaufman. Some of the non WDA pins who chose to affiliate with IC are Diamonds John and Barb Villani and Johnny and Jo Edwin, Doubles Tom and Joy Trozera, Crowns Dennis and Kay Beecher and Crown Ambassadors John and Pat Hendrickson

Interestingly, some of thses folks begat some enormous organizations which aren’t part of IC. For example, 5% of Amway Japan is down one of the Edwin’s legs; a slew of Crowns from California including Jim and Nancy Dornan (Network 21) is another of the Edwin’s legs; and the INA organization is one of the Kaufman’s legs.

The difference in operations:

Having begun the business in Atlanta, I have definite awareness of how some lines pursue their business (i.e. your info).

Most of the Amway systems are similar in their emphasis on tapes, books and functions being important tools for those distributors who desire to build networks. As a Regional Sales Manager for a Fortune 1 company, I am aware of the necessity for the appropriate information to be deseminated. Part of the conundrum in Amway is the those who do not use the tools and patterns don’t grow organizations to direct and beyond. In IC things are kept in perspective. There are no demands with regard to these tools. Use or attendence is voluntary. People who choose not to participate are not ostracized. The tools are reasonably priced (I don’t see the pins getting rich from the flow). There is a cheerfully administered refund policy. We’ve never been chastised for not attending a function.

Here in California we have 2 or 3 Moving Up Seminars per year. The investment is usually $75 per person for seminar fees and the banquet. Accomodations and meals are additional. The organizers arrange special rates at these first class hotels (Hyatt, Red Lion, etc.) usually $69 per night. On three day weekends, we pay for 2 nights and get the 3rd free. Also, if for some reason someone cannot attend the weekend, the registration fee is rolled over to the next.

Another thing that I appreciate about IC is that the reglious fevor that seems to grip some other lines does not exist. Although many folks are christians of varying denominations, there is a sesitivity to those of other faiths. My wife and I are Jewish folks from NYC and we’re real comfortable with the environment. Heck, our sponsor and Emerald was head of AV for the Baptist Home Mission Board and they’ve become among our closest friends.

On another site, in 1997 a poster wrote the following about International Connection –

What an interesting piece of research blended with imaginative speculation. Do you know of any research about the sub-group variations in the organization? I am speaking of major associations of high-level achievers who espouse very different philosophical approaches? These sub-cultures come in a variety of flavors ranging from evangelical Christian (small c is my deliberate connotation) fundamentalist to peaceful intellectuals who promote treating this business as a business rather than a pedagogical thunderbolt.

There is one such group, International Connection (IC), headed by a former Motorola Exec named Brian Hays. Hays developed a training concept called the”8-Step Pattern” that has been picked up broadly across the Amway landscape.

The IC group stands out in several ways. It distributes training materials and seminars at cost. It promotes the distinction between categories of participation: i.e. retail consumer, small business/wholesale consumption, and the network builder and encourages distributors to respect the individual’s level of interest and commitment.

IC functions are kept small enough that contact with high-achieving leaders known as “Diamond Directs” is possible. It teaches the facts, including that only 2% of distributors seek and attain significant income levels. There is no evident deception. In fact, there is a dedication to the respect for diversity and honesty.

These experiences of the IC “philosophy” sound remarkably similar to what I have experienced with Network TwentyOne. I’m sure this new “merger” will be a successful one.

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TEAM vs Quixtar: Haugen and Wilson withdraw from lawsuit

The Alticor Media Blog is reporting that former Quixtar Double Diamond Randy Haugen and former Quixtar Diamond Don Wilson have withdrawn from the Team lawsuit against Quixtar in California. Including the initial withdrawal of Fred Harteis, that’s now three "major players" who have withdrawn from the suit. The remaining plaintiffs are -

Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, Billy Florence, Chuck Goetschel, Tim Marks, Kirk Birtles, James Martin, Aron Radosa, David Brandy, Benjamin Dickie, Bruce Gilbank, Michael Martenson, and Chuck Cullen

I’ve so far only found one response on the various Team blogs and forums. That response was on the Ashton Partners run forum at forums.freetheibo.com -

I wouldn’t worry about it too much

Hmmm …. well, no one can accuse Team of failing to imbue their IBOs with positive thinking!

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Network 21: Best Practices #2 – Earnings Claims

Recently I posted a letter from Founders’ Crown Ambassador Jim Dornan about the Quixtar Accreditation process that his organization, Network TwentyOne, is undergoing in North America. Dornan followed this up with a series of Best Practices letters. The first one covered diversity. The next in the series, below, is on Earnings Claims

Jim Dornan, Network 21Hi Folks,

This is Jim Dornan with a message about the reason we’re all in business. Let’s cut to the chase – the bottom line is that we’re all here to make money.

Now, I know that’s probably not the only reason you’re building your business. For instance, many folks choose this business because building it involves helping other people – reaching out to others and connecting with them. And it’s a business you can do together – with your spouse or other family members or friends.

These are all reasons why people choose a business powered by Quixtar, in addition to wanting to make some money. And then, different folks have different reasons for making money with their business. To pay for the kids’ summer camp, or to earn enough for you or your spouse to quit a job, or to just have some extra spending money every month. But the bottom line is that, well, the bottom line is very important.

So, what do you say to prospects when you’re talking about the bottom line? There is such great income potential in this business that it’s easy to get overly excited when you’re explaining it to someone. However, even implying that you personally earn more than you actually do is unacceptable. And telling someone, for example, that they can earn $25, a year, within a year, working just a few hours a week is also unacceptable.

Truth and accuracy are absolutely essential whenever we talk to others about the income potential of this business. Prospects are protected by law from false earnings claims, and our Rules of Conduct also ensure that the law is followed and that prospects are not oversold. When talking about earnings with prospects, you can talk about your own earnings or use authorized earnings representations.

We all know the time and effort required to build a successful and profitable business. That’s why a successful business is an achievement to be very proud of – it’s not something that can be done in a flash with a minimum of work. A successful business is a challenge and a true achievement, and it should always be represented as such. To portray it as something that doesn’t require much effort does a disservice to prospective IBOs, not to mention to those who have built strong businesses.

And don’t forget that you can always share with prospects the annual numbers for the overall business such as sales and what IBOs earned in bonuses and incentives.

Thanks for listening, and thanks for all you do.

Jim Dornan

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Nutrilite – the World’s leading brand of Vitamin, Mineral, and Dietary Supplement

As Amway and Quixtar Business Owner’s know, Euromonitor International has certified that the supplement brand marketed exclusively by Amway and Quixtar, Nutrilite (marketed as Nutriway in Scandinavia and Australia/New Zealand), is the world’s best selling nutritional brand. Unfortunately “proof” of this claim has previously remained buried either in confidential reports or alternatively in Euromonitor reports that costs hundreds of dollars. Skeptics and critics of Amway and Quixtar have understandably queried the claim.

Well, earlier this year, Alticor asked Euromonitor to publicly verify the claim. Here it is.

Amway UK & ROI – Transitional ABO info pack and contract

This weekend interested Amway Business Owners (ABOs) in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland will be attending Business Expos hosted by Amway. Amway is reportedly so keen to get ABOs there that they’re even offering travel expenses.

Amway UK & ROI ContractAt the expos, the ABOs will be finding out more about the proposed changes to the Amway Business Model in that market, apparently in response to an ongoing investigation by UK goverment regulators.

As part of the transition to the new business model, Amway Business Owner’s are required to sign a new contract. I haven’t had a chance to go through the document completely yet, but I thought I’d offer it up for others to review and discuss. Click on the image left for a PDF version.

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