Why is QNET so often referred to as a scam, a pyramid scheme, and/or a fraudulent business aimed at cheating people?
To answer this question, it is important to first understand the difference between a legitimate direct selling company and a pyramid scheme. The key difference is that, in an illegal pyramid scheme, one gets commission for recruiting more people under them; whereas in a genuine direct selling company, commissions are paid only based on the sale of products. Even if a person has a large network of people under them, but they have neither retailed nor purchased any product, they don’t earn any commissions.
Pyramid schemes are illegal and the vast majority of their participants lose money. They rely on recruiting new representatives instead of product sales to profit, charge members large upfront fees, and convince them to buy large amounts of inventory that is not returnable. Their products generally have little or no actual value.
Lack of understanding is usually to blame for people mistaking legitimate direct selling companies for scams. Often, when people complain about a direct selling company, it is either due to them not realising how much work is actually involved in building a successful business or because someone else misled them. As a result, companies like QNET are often victims of endless media accusations, speculations, and baseless complaints.
QNET operates in countries with the most sophisticated and stringent laws and regulations governing this industry, such as Singapore, Hong Kong, and Germany, where our operations are completely legal and compliant with local laws.
We know that some people in network marketing may engage in unethical practices, making the industry an easy target for slurs like this. QNET has always complied with local regulations in any country it has operated in, paid taxes, contributed to numerous philanthropic activities, and reinvested in the country. We also instil a strict code of professional conduct in our distributors and penalise those who violate our Policies and Procedures.
To help combat this issue, it is important for various emerging economies to recognise that direct selling is a thriving industry creating microentrepreneurs who contribute to their communities, and institute the necessary legislation to govern the industry, to clearly distinguish the scams from genuine direct selling companies.
Has QNET been banned in any countries? Do these countries include Saudi Arabia?
Due to the nature of the direct selling business model, almost every single company in this industry has faced challenges in new and emerging markets. Direct selling is not very well understood in many countries, and a lack of regulation creates confusion and misunderstanding. However, QNET is not banned in any country.
In 2009, Rwanda’s Ministry of Finance issued a notice banning QNET because our operations were not localised at the time. We opened a dialogue with the government and addressed their concerns, and in 2012, we set up a local company in Rwanda, following which the Ministry of Finance revoked the ban. This company now serves as our East African hub.
In Saudi Arabia, the government issued a ban on direct selling and the entire network marketing industry. QNET was not singled out. However, we were one of the fastest-growing direct selling companies in Saudi at one point and had gained significant prominence; this is why media reports had often mentioned QNET when they covered the country’s overall ban on the industry.
Why has the company changed its name so many times?
Companies change their names frequently for reasons such as branding, variations in lines of business, and marketing. In our case, this was done for strategic business purposes. When QNET was founded in 1998 it offered only one product: commemorative gold coins. As the company added more products to its portfolio and the e-commerce platform evolved, the name GoldQuest was no longer suitable and it was changed to QuestNet, and then shortened to QNET. Hundreds of companies all over the world have done the same sort of thing.
Disparaging information about QNET must be accurate because it’s in the Wikipedia entry.
We strongly dispute the credibility of the Wikipedia entry on QNET. But we can’t do much about it as Wikipedia’s policy does not allow a company representative, a PR agency, or anyone with a stake in the matter to edit entries. We have lodged a complaint with Wikipedia administrators about the heavy bias of the entry and a debate has been opened on their ‘Neutral Point of View’ noticeboard.
Please also note that Wikipedia is not considered an authentic source of information. Wikipedia is a public forum where anyone, even you, can edit an entry. Unfortunately, this has led to numerous quality problems for the portal, which its founder Jimmy Wales admits himself. This has been acknowledged by leading media including the New York Times. You can read these two articles on the subject.
Wikipedia founder admits to serious quality problems
Shared in the Web of a Wikipedia Liar
Why does one find consumer complaints filed against QNET and its products on the internet?
Given the vast number of customer orders we receive and ship, seamlessly and successfully, the number of complaints are relatively few. Upon scrutiny, we have discovered many of these complaints are not even from real IRs or customers of the company. If a customer or an IR files a complaint with QNET’s customer service department, these are logged into the system and tracked diligently until the matter is resolved.
The challenge we face with online complaints are:
- People who claim to have faced issues with QNET but have never filed a formal complaint with QNET.
- People who claim they are customers or IRs of QNET but have no record in our database based on the names or email addresses they have used on the online forums.
- People making unreasonable claims for refund years after they have purchased a product.
- Disgruntled IRs who realised that the direct selling business was not for them and found the hard work of an entrepreneur difficult to undertake. Many of them use online platforms and social media to vent their anger and frustration.
Fair or not, social media allows people to say anything without fear of consequence, and in many cases, under the cloak of anonymity. In any event, complaints filed with our Global Support Centre (GSC) are taken seriously, and are responded to in a timely manner.
How many individuals should a new IR recruit (assuming lowest priced package) to recover their initial investment?
There is no “recovering” as there is no investment. Individuals buy products they want to use, for the money they pay the company. If they choose to take advantage of the business opportunity, they can earn commissions from the purchases of people they refer to QNET. How much one earns therefore depends on how hard the person works towards building a sales business. Commissions are paid according to QNET’s Compensation Plan. Naturally, the more products you sell, the more you earn in commissions.