Skip to comments.Herbalife Hires Antonio Villaraigosa, Preps For Battle With Latino Lawmakers Over Pyramid Scheme
Posted on 09/08/2013 3:05:17 PM PDT by nickcarraway
In his retirement, former L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has decided to enter the exciting world of multi-level marketing, taking on a new role as adviser to Herbalife, the Amway of nutritional supplements.
The move comes as Herbalife hires lobbyists and gears up for a battle on Capitol Hill over its business model. Congresswoman Linda Sanchez has asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate whether the company is actually operating as a pyramid scheme.
villaraigosaherbalife2.jpg Wikipedia Another silly photoshop image Herbalife looks to be signing up Democrats who might have some sway with the Obama administration. Today, the New York Post reported that Herbalife has hired the Podesta Group, the high-powered D.C. lobbying firm with close ties to Democrats.
Sanchez (D-Lakewood) has raised concerns about whether Herbalife exploits its distributors, who are disproportionately Latino. It makes sense that Herbalife would want to recruit some high-profile help from the Latino political world.
"Antonio knows our company well," Herbalife CEO Michael Johnson said in a news release. "He understands our nutrition products as well as the way our business model works and the value it can bring to communities."
But if it makes sense for Herbalife, it's hard to see how it makes sense for Villaraigosa. He's not going to be a lobbyist, at least not officially. (According to the release, he will "provide counsel on strategic business development and global community outreach.")
But inevitably, he will be advocating for a company that has an aura of controversy around it. He has talked in the past about running for governor, but this might make that more complicated. (Picture a negative ad that uses the words "lobbyist" and "pyramid scheme.")
Herbalife has been engaged for the last several months in a public battle with Bill Ackman, a hedge fund manager who claims the firm is a pyramid scheme. Ackman has made a $1 billion bet that Herbalife's stock price will drop, and has encouraged the FTC to shut the company down.
Despite the negative press attention that has resulted from that fight, Herbalife has continued to expand around the world, especially in Latin America.
of course it is a pyramid scheme
the question is whether it is an illegal pyramid scheme
It seems like Herbalife has been at the fringes of legitimacy for what... 30 years?
Yes, it is a pyramid scheme and Villaraigosa is the perfect person, its all he knows - schemes.
The more important question is ... who is paying Sanchez to go after Herballife?
I’d be more concerned to know whether its products are safe and reliable.
If it were a true pyramid scheme, it would have collapsed long ago.
This is nothing more than a hedge fund taking a short position. I hope the hedge fund gets killed.
A pyramid scheme is when new money is used to pay promises on earlier money.
Here the new money goes into tangible products, with commissions up the chain of sales positions.
On-Line Poker is a bigger risk to your wealth. So is the latest tip from Jim Cramer.
It irks that Ackman can get the government involved in his favor.
If the ingredients come from China or India, beware.
I thought Tony Villar would go back to being a union thug.
The Landmark Amway Case
By Jeffrey A. Babener, esquire
Commentary on Various Topics covered by the Amway vs FTC ruling of 1979
"Lose weight now. Ask me how."
The man had to have weighed at least 300 pounds.
Apparently the whores never really retire .. they just switch corners and/or neighborhoods.
Best response at #7
I’d say the story identified one pretty good suspect.
Why not investigate Social Security to see if it is a pyramid scheme?
Of course she won't, she's a MARXIST just like all the rest of them!
Retired radio host Bruce Williams asked the simple question of anyone contemplating such a business - “Can you make a buck selling the product?” If you could do so even though the big money is in recruiting and establishing an empire he was fine with it.
Decades ago in high school I sold Fuller Brush products for a time. I recruited several others but never made anything off of them. It was quite decent money when I put in the time and effort.
Now my youngest brother was involved for a time during the 70s or 80s in a business that had nothing I could discern other than the recruiting component. Pyramids were exceedingly popular back then and took many names and forms. Bruce took calls from people contemplating these and the gullibility shined right through in their voices.
What's your definition of "scheme" and why isn't it a legitimate business venture?
All parties entering into the business know exactly what is required of them...
Would you also consider a person acquiring a McDonald's franchise a victim of a "scheme"?
I don’t know anyone who was selling the product. They are always selling the distributorship.
What an odd comparison.
HL sellers make money only if they get people under them to sell.
There are people who join up just to buy the stuff from themselves, other than getting people to sell for you, you wont make money.
That’s a pyramid.
Vilaraigosa is a schemer.
Pyramid schemes: a scheme in which the people recruit people to pay money to those above them in a hierarchy on the expectation that they will get payments from those below.