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Fortune Hi Tech Marketing Review- Is FHTM a Pyramid Scam?

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What is Fortune Hi Tech Marketing INC. About?

In this review article we try to find out if FHTM is a scam or a legit business.

It was created by a gentleman named Paul Orberson from Lexington, Kentucky.

Fortune High Tech Marketing (AKA) FHTM is a company connecting products and services to representatives who can help sell them. The website claims you can become FHTM business owners no matter what your background, helping you to earn a living for yourself with there innovative compensation plan.

The website looks professional but is hard to navigate to find the necessary information. A link with take you to the Fortune Hi Tech Marketing ‘University’ from which you can sign up as a representative of their products, though they do not state how much a membership is going to cost upfront. After a detailed look it appears that the cost is $249 to join Fortune Hi Tech Marketing.

Is Fortune Hi Tech Marketing A Scam?

The Fortune Hi Tech Marketing system is a multi level marketing plan, also known as MLM or network marketing. Many MLM schemes online have been criticized due to the fact that they effectively become pyramid schemes, where only those at the top make money leaving those at the bottom to provide them with their money, unable to make any money themselves.

These problems and complaints are not uncommon in any MLM type business.

However, not all MLM programs are pyramid schemes. Pyramid schemes are illegal in the US and the Federal Trade Commission emphasizes the fact that these programs are legal if the main aim is to sell products rather than recruit members.

Taking a look at the Fortune Hi Tech Marketing website there are a number of products available for you to promote. This means, in this case, that this MLM program is legal and could therefore have the potential of bringing your profits.

1,000 Leads Daily - 3 Day Risk Free Trial

Business Opportunity Leads!

However, through further investigations it is clear that many users have essentially experienced the bad effects of a ‘pyramid’ scheme. While they technically have products to sell, the real money from Fortune Hi Tech Marketing comes in recruiting members and earning money from what they sell. Therefore those at the bottom are not getting much out of their investment.

Can You Make Money From It?

Products range from magazines to services, to communications and health and beauty. This means that users have a great choice on what they want to sell, according to where their skills and interest lie.

However, based on reviews it appears that most of the money is made through referring members who pay the $249 fee, and it becomes a lot harder to make money unless you build up a large down line. The bottom line, this appears to be a program that will only help a few at the top make real money.

As with any program do your research and make an informed decision that is best for you and your family.

Until next time,

Charles & Susan

P.S. Do you want to see how we made $14,000.00 Dollars In One Month?
Click Here For All The Info!

About Charles & Susan Truett (141 Articles)
We are Charles & Susan Truett from East Tennessee in The Smoky Mountains. We have been online marketers for about ten years. We like connecting and helping folks so feel free to connect with us. Thank you for visiting.

47 Comments on Fortune Hi Tech Marketing Review- Is FHTM a Pyramid Scam?

  1. Hi,

    I just wanted to say, your assessment of FHTM is a little off. I have only been involved with the company for 2 years, but since my second month in the company have had Coma Checks, my first five figure check being less than 9 months into the company. I have earned a Lexus Car that is being paid for by the company. I have seen MANY lives changed in my downline organization. A company that puts the majority of its compensation plan at the first promotion alone hardly sounds like one that is focused on ALL those at the Top! I have done 4 different MLM companies and this is the only one that has actually paid worth a flip. Paul set a cap to where over 90% of the revenue goes to the Compensation plan.

    Like all opportunities, one must at least do a little work. No money is ever paid out on any rep until that rep sells at least 3 services themselves. Funny, people say its one of those business to where only the people at the top make the money. Well yeah, GET TO THE TOP! Is there a business where that is not that case. Last I checked, the Wal-Mart Managers make more than the greeters. The CEO makes more than the Managers. This is a business to where you do the work you promote yourself. I already make more than most of the people above me just because I have a little work ethic.

    Thanks

  2. Once I kept doing more research on the company FHTM and its owner Paul Orbason, I found out that Mr. Orboson is making a lot of money from this company (unlike what they say in the presentation about him not making money). The reason is that several of the companies that FHTM markets for are owned by Mr. Orboson himself or he has stocks or shares involved in those companies.

    I also know that 80% of all Reps quit. If *I* owned the company, I’d see that as a problem – and fix it. most of the people I know that have joined FHTM have worked their REARS off, and don’t just sit around and expect it to come to them. Again, they entice you – make it look easy, and then they say they don’t want to hear “whining”. Is this “helping people”??

    Also, the My parents are FHTM Reps, and they found out these brutal facts the hard way:
    Dish Network – charges FHTM Reps $103 per month; but if you’re a “regular Joe” off the street, you get that same package for $54, and there’s a sale on now for $30 for the 1st year.

    AT&T Internet – it costs $5 MORE per month, and FHTM won’t help you. If you go through AT&T directly, your service is 2x faster and AT&T will provide service. If you are an FHTM Rep, they say “Talk to your up-line”.

    Fon-Vantage – it’s $11 per month cheaper (yeaaah!), but there’s a $93 start-up charge. this charge is not charged with Cox or the competition.

    My point is – the income generated for the up-line is paid for by the down-line. This is helping the UP-LINE, not the starters. If this truly *was* about “helping people”, they would give everyone EQUAL. Also, the false advertising about the $125 for Managers (It’s $100) and the 60 Lexuses that have been given away (it’s less than 30 – the remaining 30+ have been bought by Reps – not by the company) – not to mention the hidden small-print that the Lexus lease WILL BE ON YOU if you do not DOUBLE from that point.

    So, let’s sum it up – you pay MORE … and in most cases, get LESS. HOW is that *helping* people?? Ad if this is the “financial vehicle” , then how CAN it be when most Reps quit? And 66% of EXECUTIVES quit??!!!!

    In closing, I know that Orboson worked at Excel. It as an AWEFUL company. HE worked there for 6 years, and it caused his divorce. How is THAT a God-like example? Integrity?? Does God suddenly condone divorce?? Or not having integrity??

    THINK, people!!

  3. Mrs Canada quit whining and get to the top this the greatest Company on the planet period. FHTM ROCKS you just don’t want it bad enough help others get to the top and everything will work its self out stop thinking just about you.

    RSM
    San Antonio, TX

  4. That’s what they *all* say – to quit whining. Here’s a web site where a San Antonio Rep has been taken by her FHTM up-line:
    http://www.topix.com/forum/city/west-plains-mo/TTOE5FK21KVU9EG25/p83#lastPost

    And you’re *right* – I don’t want it badly enough – I HAVE my Porsche and 2 other vehicles – and my home – paid in full – from my *other* business, not FHTM. I’ve lived in the large California home and driven it 200 on the highway. I now understand my Kung Fu instructor: People are too wrapped-up in “things”, and not meaning.

    I wish you the best… but another post:
    http://chrishoyt.com/general/fhtm-their-personal-web-page-or-pwp/

    Feel free to argue with them all – many have achieved Executive, and have worked it hard for 2+ years. Have fun! Me? I’ll go back to our partycentral.makesparties FREE web page, and I’ll keep making those nice cheques.
    ¡Adios!
    🙂

  5. Hi Everyone,

    Thanks for leaving your comments.
    Lots of opinions one way or the other on this program.

    All we can say if it is working for you and you
    feel good about it keep on doing what you are doing.

    It is just not for us.

    Thanks,
    Charles & Susan Truett

  6. Somebody please e-mail me at krbr1226@yahoo.com and tell me how to make good money in fhtm

  7. Kenny,

    Has anyone emailed you regarding FHTM? I didn’t want to email if you’d already been contacted…there is good money to be made…it’s all being made off bills, nothings made off the people that are joining…this post wasn’t placed to get an argument going, I was just curious if Kenny had received a response yet, that’s all! You can email me at tandjjohnson@yahoo.com for more information if you’d like.

  8. I would like to say thanks to the fraudulent activity by FHTM reps, the company has been ordered to stop doing business in North Dakota. A cease and desist order was issued by the Attorney General for an assortment of violations. For more information about FHTM C&D in N.D., Google Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing cease & desist and you can review the court order or click on my name.

    In addition to the troubles, has anyone reviewed direct selling news website? FHTM ranks number 60 out of 69 company’s listed in Sept of 09. Annual revenue shows FHTM at 100 million and they have 85 thousand reps. Now here is the problem. Most FHTM reps are asked to sign up on 3 services right when they enroll. Usually a replicated web template that cost $25 a month (1pt), and a replicated travel site (free with Travelocity) that cost $50 a month (2pts). This generates a quick pay-out up the pyramid. One rep pays $75 a month on replicated web templates. Everyone that enrolls has never used it before, why now. Basically they are useless. Annually, 85 thousand reps pay $76 million on replicated web templates. However the average FHTM rep spend about $150 a month on their own services and products. Get the picture how the revenue is generated. It’s what got YTB in trouble, NO END-CONSUMERS. Basically you become your own customer in order to profit in the FHTM pay plan.

  9. i was approached by FHTM today and lucky for me I’ve feel for the Amway scam way back and between that and the rainbow assholes I had my guard up. When the tag team partner showed up I knew what time it was and I refused to give in.

    300 sign-up then bring in 3 friends that will hate you later for 300.00 each to get your 300.00 back. 60.00 month for website that is a clone template. pushy amway tactics and meetings. lets get excited and make money together. I’ve heard that song and dance before. meetings that make trainers and reps money.

    I have a feeling I wont be seeing them again no time soon.

    If you make good money off it good for you but I’ll just work hard for my money and pass thank you. Good luck with your leased Lexus. Im smart enough to read enough reviews and ask people where it took them I suggest you do yourself a favor and do the same.

    heres some others that you might have seen on tv.

    1. carlton sheets(buy my cds)
    2. crazy govt money dude wit hall the ??? on his coat ( buy my book)
    3. monavie (drink expensive drinks in a fancy bottle with a great story video)
    4. don laprie ( place ads and make money lol, but oh ya buy my cds)
    5. amway (sell/buy no name soaps, etc, and come to meetings for 20-60.00)

  10. All MLM’s sound good at the meeting. Problem I have with this one, as has been said before, is that the real money is made when you sign people up, not so much on product volume. Not all MLM’s are pyramid schemes, but this really does appear to be so, since the money is made on recruiting.

    Eventually, the FTC will shut them down, but that’s probably going to be a while. In the meantime, if you’re making money, you’d better be banking a lot of it, because I’m betting 2-3 more years, tops.

  11. This is about right for Internet prattle – a mixture of some truth and some total bs.

    Someone says “i was approached by FHTM today and lucky for me I’ve feel for the Amway scam” Guess he did not “feel” for the English teacher though.

    I live near Orlando where the “Amway” center stands. The owners of the Amway “scam” also own the NBA team that has the third best record in the league. So that comment was moronic.

    I was interested to see the comments of others . I think it is probably legal and I am surprised I am just now hearing about it. Correct me if I am wrong (and I am so SURE you will), but this is just like many other things, for example Real Estate. Some folks make very good money, but most (salespeople) don’t make any money at it. Take classes, take the test, get the license, and then make zero sales. A very personable friend of mine was all excited about RE. He had sold windows and roofing supplies, so he knew about sales, but he was a complete flop at RE.

    Same with Network Marketing:

    Most companies fail – this one seems to have avoided that

    Most people who sign up quit … according to some of you here that remains the case here … I know of NO company where that is not the case.

    Sales is hard and mlm is hard. If your company is declared illegal, it is VERY hard. I don’t think that will happen here. There are products, but I don’t think the products have enough margin in them to pay seven levels of people more than pennies.

    So I was looking at this, but think I have quit looking.

    I have very mixed feeling about this. This could be a chance for people who need to make money to make some, but I hope no unemployed people are trying to scrape together 300 bucks unless they understand that this is not going to be a walk in the park.

  12. mommy ine need of advice // April 1, 2010 at 12:44 am // Reply

    good friends of the family are trying to recruit me and my husband and we cant figure out if it is worth it or just another scam. i have two kids and don’t have the money to blow on something that could turn out to be a very bad choice. i have read a lot of comments and other articles about the company and don’t know what to think yet. i need pros and cons for this company. please email me aurianwolf2007@yahoo.com

  13. Joseph Isaacs // April 2, 2010 at 7:59 am // Reply

    FHTM is worse than a PPS or Pyramid Scheme as they entice representatives to join by LYING about the affiliation they have with the products they market. FORTUNE HAS NO DIRECT RELATIONSHIPS WITH ANYONE except the vitamin company that Orberson owns. THEY ARE A SCAM!

    How to Identify a Product-Based Pyramid Scheme

    © 2003, Jon M. Taylor, PhD

    Multilevel companies that are based on profits from recruiting rather than retailing should be regarded as pyramid schemes or “recruiting MLMs.” This article describes five ways to distinguish them from “retail MLMs” in which the company pays generously for retailing products without recruiting a large downline. “Recruiting MLMs” typically display five features:
    1. Recruiting of participants is unlimited in an endless chain of recruiters recruiting recruiters.

    Ask whether unlimited recruiting is allowed. When a given market is saturated, and the program must move on to another location or introduce new products or divisions to continue, the opportunity for each new person to make money becomes less and less as the programs expands.

    2. Advancement in a hierarchy of multiple levels of “distributors” is achieved by recruitment, rather than by appointment.

    Ask whether participating “distributors” advance their position (and potential income) in a hierarchy of multiple levels of “distributors” by recruiting other “distributors” who in turn advance by recruiting distributors under them, etc.? If so, the result is self-appointment through recruitment to ascending payout levels in the distributor hierarchy. If the only way a person can profit significantly in the scheme is through recruiting to advance to higher payout levels (or to buy another’s downline), this strongly indicates a pyramid scheme.

    3.”Pay to play” requirements are satisfied by ongoing “incentivized purchases.” These are purchases of goods and services that are required to participate in commissions or to ascend in the distributor hierarchy. If they are required to participate in the “business opportunity,” then whether they are used, sold, given away, or stored is irrelevant. They should be considered a cost of doing business.

    Ask whether prospective “distributors” are encouraged to make sizable investments (“front loading”) in “incentivized purchases” in order to take advantage of the “business opportunity” and later to continue qualifying for advancement or higher payout in overrides (commissions and bonuses). This practice, can result in large losses if the products cannot be resold. Also be wary of plans that require minimum periodic purchases (“pay to play”) to qualify for commissions or advancement. Do not sign up for continuing product purchases on auto-ship through an automatic bank draft or credit card, rather than making occasional purchases as needed. Such purchase requirements may be disguised investments in a product-based pyramid scheme or a clever attempt to disguise pyramid investments as product purchases.

    4. The company offers commissions and/or bonuses to more than five levels of “distributors.”

    Ask whether the company pay overrides to distributors in a hierarchy of more levels than are functionally justifiable. Even in major corporations, the entire world marketplace can be covered in five levels of sales management ­- branch, district, regional, national, and international sales managers. Paying commissions and bonuses on more than five levels in an MLM program primarily enriches those at the top at the expense of those at the bottom. You would be wise to avoid any program that pays overrides on more than five levels. Breakaway compensation systems are particularly exploitive, as payments are on a hierarchy of “breakaway” organizations of whole groups of participants, not just individuals — creating an extraordinarily high loss rate, except for those at the top of a “mega-pyramid of pyramids.”

    5. Company payout per sale for each upline participant equals or exceeds that for the person selling the product, creating inadequate incentive to retail and excessive incentive to recruit — and an extreme concentration of income at the top.

    Ask whether a “distributor” purchasing products “for resale” would receive about the same total payout (in commissions, bonuses, etc.) from the MLM company as participants several levels above who had nothing to do with the sale. If so, the company’s payments to the person retailing the product would be pitifully small, while those at the top of the upline can compound the small commission per sale by the sales of hundreds or even thousands of downline distributors. This is great for the upline leaders but lousy for those attempting retail sales. Avoid any MLM company that pays less than half of all distributor payout to the person actually selling the products to outside customers.

    Never accept income projections of retail sales at full retail prices, especially for products that are overpriced and not competitive in the marketplace. Also be wary if you are asked to choose between two options or “tracks” — one for those who want to “retail” the products and another track for those who are serious about “building the business.” This sales pitch usually indicates that the incentives are heavily weighted towards recruiting

    Where valid data are available, recent research has demonstrated that when all five of these red flags are found in an MLM, the percentage of participants who lose money is 99.9% — even worse than the loss rates for typical no-product pyramid schemes and for games of chance in Las Vegas.

    ______________

    Dr. Taylor is president of the Consumer Awareness Institute and a director of Pyramid Scheme Alert. Additional information is available from Dr. Taylor and the Pyramid Scheme Alert Web site.

  14. This FHTM thing is the biggest scam ever. It really is. Trust me people watch dateline in about a year and you will see Chris Hanson interviewing the poor souls who lost there money to FHTM. This is such a joke. You people who are into this scam are either stupid or have no respect for ANYONE! Actually both. What a joke this is. FHTM!

  15. Looks like California just filed a permanent injunction against FHTM – Orberson, Mills and 5 of the top 7 reps in the Presidential Ambassador pool. If they have their way Fortune and Paul will be liable for 50Million in repayments and damages. WOW. What ya gonna do when they come after you as a rep. Glad I am out.

  16. Joseph Isaacs // April 3, 2010 at 7:24 pm // Reply

    How to Identify a Product-Based Pyramid Scheme (“Recruiting MLM”)
    © 2003, Jon M. Taylor, PhD

    Multilevel companies that are based on profits from recruiting rather than retailing should be regarded as pyramid schemes or “recruiting MLMs.” This article describes five ways to distinguish them from “retail MLMs” in which the company pays generously for retailing products without recruiting a large downline. “Recruiting MLMs” typically display five features:
    1. Recruiting of participants is unlimited in an endless chain of recruiters recruiting recruiters.

    Ask whether unlimited recruiting is allowed. When a given market is saturated, and the program must move on to another location or introduce new products or divisions to continue, the opportunity for each new person to make money becomes less and less as the programs expands.

    2. Advancement in a hierarchy of multiple levels of “distributors” is achieved by recruitment, rather than by appointment.

    Ask whether participating “distributors” advance their position (and potential income) in a hierarchy of multiple levels of “distributors” by recruiting other “distributors” who in turn advance by recruiting distributors under them, etc.? If so, the result is self-appointment through recruitment to ascending payout levels in the distributor hierarchy. If the only way a person can profit significantly in the scheme is through recruiting to advance to higher payout levels (or to buy another’s downline), this strongly indicates a pyramid scheme.

    3.”Pay to play” requirements are satisfied by ongoing “incentivized purchases.” These are purchases of goods and services that are required to participate in commissions or to ascend in the distributor hierarchy. If they are required to participate in the “business opportunity,” then whether they are used, sold, given away, or stored is irrelevant. They should be considered a cost of doing business.

    Ask whether prospective “distributors” are encouraged to make sizable investments (“front loading”) in “incentivized purchases” in order to take advantage of the “business opportunity” and later to continue qualifying for advancement or higher payout in overrides (commissions and bonuses). This practice, can result in large losses if the products cannot be resold. Also be wary of plans that require minimum periodic purchases (“pay to play”) to qualify for commissions or advancement. Do not sign up for continuing product purchases on auto-ship through an automatic bank draft or credit card, rather than making occasional purchases as needed. Such purchase requirements may be disguised investments in a product-based pyramid scheme or a clever attempt to disguise pyramid investments as product purchases.

    4. The company offers commissions and/or bonuses to more than five levels of “distributors.”

    Ask whether the company pay overrides to distributors in a hierarchy of more levels than are functionally justifiable. Even in major corporations, the entire world marketplace can be covered in five levels of sales management ­- branch, district, regional, national, and international sales managers. Paying commissions and bonuses on more than five levels in an MLM program primarily enriches those at the top at the expense of those at the bottom. You would be wise to avoid any program that pays overrides on more than five levels. Breakaway compensation systems are particularly exploitive, as payments are on a hierarchy of “breakaway” organizations of whole groups of participants, not just individuals — creating an extraordinarily high loss rate, except for those at the top of a “mega-pyramid of pyramids.”

    5. Company payout per sale for each upline participant equals or exceeds that for the person selling the product, creating inadequate incentive to retail and excessive incentive to recruit — and an extreme concentration of income at the top.

    Ask whether a “distributor” purchasing products “for resale” would receive about the same total payout (in commissions, bonuses, etc.) from the MLM company as participants several levels above who had nothing to do with the sale. If so, the company’s payments to the person retailing the product would be pitifully small, while those at the top of the upline can compound the small commission per sale by the sales of hundreds or even thousands of downline distributors. This is great for the upline leaders but lousy for those attempting retail sales. Avoid any MLM company that pays less than half of all distributor payout to the person actually selling the products to outside customers.

    Never accept income projections of retail sales at full retail prices, especially for products that are overpriced and not competitive in the marketplace. Also be wary if you are asked to choose between two options or “tracks” — one for those who want to “retail” the products and another track for those who are serious about “building the business.” This sales pitch usually indicates that the incentives are heavily weighted towards recruiting

    Where valid data are available, recent research has demonstrated that when all five of these red flags are found in an MLM, the percentage of participants who lose money is 99.9% — even worse than the loss rates for typical no-product pyramid schemes and for games of chance in Las Vegas.

    ______________

    Dr. Taylor is president of the Consumer Awareness Institute and a director of Pyramid Scheme Alert. Additional information is available from Dr. Taylor and the Pyramid Scheme Alert Web site.

  17. Not trying to knock FHTM- but what they don’t tell you after they sign you up. The additional cost that comes with it. 299.00 to sign up, then 90.00 to start a bundle pack which you have to buy and the cost is only good for 60 days then you pay full price of 139.00 a month, then you need to pay for the site 24.99 a month oh..and of course to stay connected you need to get the tel tag number for another 24.99 a month. So back in Debt I go! It works if you can afford to stay in the business and if you are motivated to make it work for you. But if you are a busy person that does not make enough to do this…then don’t sign up. Otherwise they will email you daily, call you, text you. I’m a single mom…F/t worker, F/T Mom and P/T student. I did not realize how much time you need to make this work for you. This is not for me! I can’t push people to come aboard without being honest on how it “really” works and the cost behind it. Something the Rep left out and I found out the hard way- lesson learn. Don’t get me wrong. I like the products they offer and I would use it, but all the other leg work- I don’t have the time for.

  18. Joseph Isaacs // April 26, 2010 at 8:02 am // Reply

    The assumtions that a company is legal because products are available to sell is not the same as they are being sold. FHTM is an ILLEGAL PYRAMID SCAM because (according to the FTC) – more than 50% of the revenues earned is from recruiting and NOT from product sales. Montana has demanded disclosure statements in that state and it will be interesting to see how they are manipulated by the FHTM geeks.

    The recent announcement on the FHTM corporate website was done to calm the waters but neglected to state all of the facts (as usual – if they did that nobody would join)

    Here are the facts directly from the Montana Securities Commissioner:

    Contact: Jackie Boyle, jboyle@mt.gov, 406-444-2040

    Helena- Kentucky-based Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing (FHTM) agreed today to pay nearly $1 million to settle an allegation by Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen that the company was operating a pyramid promotional scheme in Montana. On March 4, 2010, Lindeen ordered the company to stop operations in the state and filed an action against the company, arising from consumer complaints that her office received and investigated. “This agreement sends a clear message to businesses operating illegally in Montana that I am committed to protecting consumers,” Lindeen responded. “Montanans work hard to support their families and I will not tolerate the sale of false promises to them.”

    The Order and Proposed Action alleged that FHTM representatives were marketing the company as income potential to participants who agreed to recruit new participants. Those individuals were asked to pay $299 to join the program. FHTM representatives also lured new participants by claiming it offered huge income opportunities through partnerships with large companies such as Travelocity, General Electric, and The Home Depot, when such partnerships did not exist.

    Details of the Consent Agreement and Order with Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing (FHTM):

    • FHTM agrees to refund up to $840,000 to more than 3,400 Montana participants.

    • FHTM and the company’s founders, Thomas Mills and Paul Orberson, will pay a fine of $100,000 to the Montana’s general fund. Dianne Graber, a Montana FHTM representative, will pay a $5,000 fine to the general fund.

    • FHTM will contribute $50,000 to the Investor Protection Trust, a non-profit organization that provides investor education in Montana.

    • In addition, FHTM will be required to change its business practices in Montana:

    -New participants in FHTM will only be required to pay $75.00 to become a representative,

    -FHTM will conduct training seminars along with representatives of the Commissioner’s Office, in Billings, Bozeman, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell and Missoula, and will conduct web-based training that is mandatory for all current or prospective representatives,

    -FHTM will provide a disclosure brochure to each current and prospective representative outlining FHTM’s program, including the average amount of income achieved and the average amount of time in the program required to reach each level,

    -FHTM will reinforce with representatives that product sales are not primarily for self-consumption but for sale to non-participants, and

    -FHTM will require its representatives to maintain records of non-participant customers and submit those records on a monthly basis.

    Approximately two weeks from the settlement, Montana FHTM representatives entitled to refunds will be receiving letters from Commissioner Lindeen outlining the requirements to get their money. The refund amount is equal to the participants’ cost less any earnings they received from FHTM.

  19. Some of you are so ignorant.. FHTM is no different that other companies who sell products that you can use for yourself and sponsor others to do the same…THE DIFFERENCE WITH FHTM, is the payout is more lucrative…. In my first month with FHTM, Ive made more in one month than any other companies Ive promoted….

    AND YOU DONT GET PAID FOR RECRUITING…in other words, when someone signs up, you dont get paid…but when a product or service is sold, you get paid with advertising dollars from the big companies… Makes sense doesnt it..

    And for some of you to take your time posting pages upon pages of negativity…GET A LIFE… theres thousands of opportunities out there …if this doesnt fit you move on already….

  20. Joseph Isaacs // May 21, 2010 at 8:20 am // Reply

    Recently ABC news affiliates have been investigating FHTM along with multiple state and federal agencies for running a scam. Here are the links to some of this recent news. Dont be fooled by the “smoke and mirrors” that Orberson and Fortune NSM’s blow your way.

  21. Team Skeptical // May 22, 2010 at 9:46 pm // Reply

    I was approached by a former co-worker of mine who is trying to get people to enroll. I watched the video and saw a folder full of information that was given to him. I am VERY skeptical about this program and do not liked being scammed. He swears that this program changed he and his girlfriend’s life and he just wants to pass this on to other people he knows can benefits from this program. After reading the comments above, I’m not sure this is the right thing for me. Your comments either negative or positive towards this program have been very helpful in me making my decision to enroll in this program.

  22. Here is some information that I found about FHTM.

    The first website is info about FHTM getting banned in Montana and ordered to pay $1 million back to the residents of the state. According Montana state law, the courts found FHTM was guilty of running a pyramid scheme.

    http://www.ripoffreport.com/multi-level-marketing/fortune-hi-tech-mark/fortune-hi-tech-marketing-fhtm-be4b5.htm

    Second website is has the video of live news coverage on the courts ruling FHTM as nothing more than a pyramid scheme.

    http://mlmblog.net/2010/04/fortune-hi-tech-montana-pyramid-scheme-video.html

  23. You people who are talking bad about FHTM are hilarious! You say its so bad and that its a scam and in three years it will be shut down?? Ok lets make a bet in 2013 that FHTM will be shut down. if its not all you morons are gonna look so stupid and everyone who stuck in it well lets just say there will be more millionaires and you will still be just getting by.

  24. billy montchamp // July 31, 2010 at 8:01 am // Reply

    Whistleblower fights back after frivolous suit by FHTM for exposing their ILLEGAL Pyramid Scheme

    Lexington, Kentucky – June 16, 2010 – In light of all of the recent investments scams including the infamous Bernie Maddoff, whistleblowers and those with morals fear that the frauds they expose will result in unjust lawsuits filed against them by the companies they complain about. One such situation was that of the lawsuit filed by Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing against Fortune Social LLC and Joseph Isaacs in May 2010.

    Joseph Isaacs and Fortune Social, LLC (collectively “Isaacs”) deny each and every claim brought by Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing, Inc. (“FHTM”) in a filing made today with the American Arbitration Association, who is overseeing this case. In addition, Isaacs fights back and asserts his own counterclaim for relief against FHTM, Paul C. Orberson (individually and in his capacity as President of FHTM), Jeff Orberson (individually and in his capacity as Chief Operating Officer of FHTM), and Thomas A. Mills (individually and in his capacity as Vice-President and Chief Executive Officer of FHTM) (collectively “FHTM”). Isaacs counterclaim claim Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Breach of Contract, Common Law Fraud, Unfair & Deceptive Business Practices, Failure to Register Securities, Fraudulent Practices Regarding the Sale of Securities, Civil Racketeering Conspiracy (violation of the Federal RICO statutes) and Defamation.

    FHTM operates an unlawful product-based endless recruiting pyramid scheme that relies on untrue and misleading representations and unlawful, unfair, and fraudulent business practices. While FHTM purports to be in the business of selling name-brand services like wireless, satellite television, home security, vitamins, nutritional products and travel services, its true business is using consumers to generate fee income for representing non-existent partnerships, major sports figures, and prominent businessmen. To entice consumers to participate, FHTM makes untrue or misleading claims regarding its relationship with Fortune 100 companies like Verizon Wireless, GE Security, Dish Networks and Travelocity to create the illusion that consumers can become millionaires in three to five years.

    FHTM’s growth exploded when it began to lure consumers disenchanted with traditional jobs and the recession that began in 2007 to inspirational and high-pressure business opportunity seminars touting an innovative business model that promises huge financial rewards through multi-level network marketing. FHTM erring presenters claim to have proprietary tools, special relationships, and other support that allow consumers to grow their own business by partnering with FHTM’s “companies”.

    It would not be long before Isaacs (and the world) made several troubling discoveries about FHTM’s business plan and practices that doused his enthusiasm: (1) Paul Orberson had not made any special arrangements with the companies mentioned at the business opportunity/presentation seminar or in the company produced videos; (2) the only way to earn a significant income and be promoted up the ranks was to recruit additional IRs; (3) FHTM had not received regulatory approval for its pyramiding scheme in every state; (4) only a handful of IRs had earned anywhere near the residuals projected; (5) the prominent businessmen, politicians, former attorney generals and sports figures to whom FHTM constantly alluded were in fact IRs actively promoting their own FHTM business; and (6) a growing number of state attorneys general had already begun investigating FHTM in response to numerous complaints.

    It turns out that FHTM’s ‘innovative’ marketing plan is nothing more than a face lift to an age-old scheme. According to the FTC’s Consumer Protection Bureau:

    Pyramid schemes now come in so many forms that they may be difficult to recognize immediately. However, they all share one overriding characteristic. They promise consumers or investors large profits based primarily on recruiting others to join their program, not based on profits from any real investment or real sale of goods to the public. Some schemes may purport to sell a product, but they often simply use the product to hide their pyramid structure. There are two tell-tale signs that a product is simply being used to disguise a pyramid scheme: inventory loading and a lack of retail sales. Inventory loading occurs when a company’s incentive program forces recruits to buy more products than they could ever sell, often at inflated prices. If this occurs throughout the company’s distribution system, the people at the top of the pyramid reap substantial profits, even though little or no product moves to market. The people at the bottom make excessive payments for inventory that simply accumulates in their basements. A lack of retail sales is also a red flag that a pyramid exists. Many pyramid schemes will claim that their product is selling like hot cakes. However, on closer examination, the sales occur only between people inside the pyramid structure or to new recruits joining the structure, not to consumers out in the general public.

    Nonetheless, the truth is catching up with FHTM. On December 10, 2009, The North Dakota Attorney General’s Office filed a Cease and Desist Order for violation of the Consumer Fraud Law, the Transient Merchant Law, the Home Solicitation Sales Law, and the North Dakota Pyramid Schemes Act. On January 19, 2010, FHTM entered into a Assurance of Voluntary Compliance with the North Dakota Attorney General’s Office. On March 16, 2010, the Montana State Auditor’s Office filed a Temporary Cease and Desist Order against FHTM, Paul C. Orberson, Thomas A. Mills, and Dianne Graber (a Montana IR). According to the Montana State Auditor’s Office, FHTM has engaged in acts or practices constituting violations of the Securities Act of Montana, Montana Code ANN.30-10-101 et seq. On April 22, 2010, FHTM agreed to pay nearly $1 million and to change its business practices to resolve the charge that it is operating a pyramid promotional scheme.

    With each passing day, more states are jumping on FHTM’s bandwagon. The alarming rise in consumer complaints and governmental sanctions has prompted the Better Business Bureau of Central and Eastern Kentucky to downgrade FHTM’s rating from “B-” to “F”. At the same time, a proliferation of online bulletin boards and blogs, such as http://www.complaintsboard.com and http://www.scams.com criticize FHTM’s pyramid scheme confirms that Isaacs’ experience is not unique. Will those operations be the next target of Fortune’s high price legal team?

  25. I hate all of these stupid business plans that try to attract uneducated people with hopes of making money the easy way. The fact is all of these so called businesses require you to pay a premium to join and ask you to sign up your family and friends. They are all scams!!! Sure some people will make money but at the expense of others. Why pay 60% more for services to get 10% back???? If anyone is interested…….I will pay your bills for you, mark them up 50% and send you 20% back. How does that sound? I am charging you less and giving you more back. I guess I just beat their business plan. It’s kind of like why buy a five minute abs video when you can buy a three minute abs video? Just don’t get you people.

  26. 719_Kingston // August 23, 2010 at 1:17 pm // Reply

    FHTM is nothing but paying a few dollars to make a few dollars. The only real way to make money is the “pyramid scheme” sign up your friends and relatives and we will pay you hundreds of dollars. Well if you pay the monthly fee (for your selected products) which they trick you into and your enrollment fee then of course they can pay you because your friends and relatives are payting them. Suggestion- Just ask your friends and family for money. It will save all of you the headache of participating in this scam and being ripped off. Just ask them all for a little donation and save them a huge headache. On the other hand if you know a bunch of idiots that you don’t mind ripping off then go ahead and sign ’em up and make a few bucks. Don’t involve anyone you actually like. It is such a scam. By the way they won’t refund your money. BEFORE you sign up call the customer service number and wait on hold for 15 minutes to ask the rude “reps” questions. It will definitely change your mind. They are rated F by the bbb. You can see the report if you enter the zip code 40503 on the bbb website.

  27. Interesting viewpoints!
    Here’s some things to consider for those who are reading these comments with an open mind, actually searching for the truth.

    FHTM is a business, just like construction, retail outlets, restaurants, real estate or anything else you can think of. Therefore, if you are an employee with no desire to own a business, then you should absolutely not join Fortune, because you will fail, and end up here posting negative comments!

    It is interesting to note, that the average failure rate of traditional small business in corporate America ranges from 50-75% depending on the industry, yet when it comes to MLM, people are shocked and appalled that many don’t succeed and insist that they must have been scammed.

    However, if you understand what you are getting involved in, which is a business for $200 instead of maybe $200,000, and you have a strong work ethic and desire for success, then you will have a fair chance at making a good living with FHTM.

    Top income earners in FHTM or any opportunity did not get there via chance or positioning, but rather through dedication, belief and extremely hard work. They got knocked on their butt over and over just like everyone else, the difference is that instead of sitting there pouting and blaming everyone else, they got back up and tried again.

    Without some grit, you will not succeed in FHTM or any business! So, there are two solutions, improve yourself dramatically so that you do have some grit, or stick with your J.O.B. and steer well clear of the network marketing industry, because you will fail!

    Most people who join MLM are looking for a “magic pill” (news flash…there is no such thing), and have no real interest in working hard for something of value. If people really knew the ABC’s of building a successful MLM business, and who should not be sponsored, then the industry would have a much better reputation.

    Conclusion: If you are to be successful in FHTM you must be sure of the following.
    1) What you want to achieve financially in your lifetime.
    2) How many years you have left to get there.
    3) What is the best vehicle to get you there.

    IF you decide it is FHTM, then you need to:
    1) Write out your immediate and long term goals (these keep you going in the tough times)
    2) Understand that you will get knocked down repeatedly and decide if you have or are willing to acquire the fortitude to keep getting up.
    3) Find a knowledgeable, successful team/leader to join who can help you get where you want to go.
    4) Get started!

    Sincerely,
    Jesse

  28. What does everyone have to say about this guy’s website:
    Looks like he was right on the money!

  29. I am a professional salesman and I have sold many products in my life. I have one thing to say to people who are always looking for the down side of everything. You have never spent 60,000 miles a year on the road trying to make a living, and you have never had to work with your hands and get dirty to try carve out a living. Life is about chances and opportunities. How do you think Wal-Mart works? They are the middle man for every product they sell. They do not own the product until it is scanned at the counter. Everyone is looking for the golden egg, but everyone is not going to find it. The golden egg is for the people who are willing to work for something and never give up on there dreams. That is why 10% of the population controls 90% of the money in the world. I have used the services for FHTM, and it not only saved me money personally, but I am getting a small commission from buying from myself. so if that is illegal then every business in the world should be under investigation. From the federal government down to the guy who has a lawn service with day labors. Everbody makes money off of other people, it is how Free Enterprize works! No one makes you do anything! You do it on your own free will. I am tired of people always crying about what they got scammed on, and what they do not have. I have work hard all my life to get where I am today, because life is touch and it pushes back 365 days a year. That is what is wrong with the US today everbody wants something free or easy! We need to stop feeling sorry for ourselves and get to work. Multi levels are not for everyone, but if you are willing to do the work and educate yourself on what you are selling you can make money at anything. There products are competitve priced and also benifical to ones health. I know this because I am a competive shopper myself. I must apologize for the writing. It is not my strong attribute! Thanks for listening

  30. At the time this article was written FHTM has since been in trouble by two States were a cease and desist order was issued. In order to continue doing business in North Dakota and Montana FHTM had to pay a fine. Montana was essentially the kicker of the two states. FHTM had to pay close to a million dollars for operating as an alleged pyramid scheme to the State of Montana. A lot was exposed and learned from the Montana C&D. The most important thing that came from the cease and desist order in Montana is the required income disclosure statement from the result of too many sales reps making false income claims. It’s very helpful in knowing what the average reps are really making. If you draw the numbers out on a piece of paper, the shape can easily be defined as a true pyramid scheme where no one is making money at the bottom. Only those at the very top of the scheme (1/2 of 1%) are making all the money most people dream of and most of these reps are not new to the industry. Most of the sales reps at the top have been in the industry for over 15 years. A handful transferred over their already established downline of sales reps from another MLM company that went bankrupt. The first two levels of the business make up 95% of the sales reps in FHTM. One of the sales pitches in FHTM is “switch to stuff you’re already using.” Most the time I find people are just purchasing product they haven’t done before in order to qualify in the point system to earn the recruiting money. If you purchase product monthly, the average rep can spend about $150-250 a month. The 95% are now making nothing after monthly product purchase. The IDS also shows 30% of the sales reps did not earn on check for the year 2009. WOW!

    Recently FHTM was issued a class action lawsuit by former reps around the States. I’m not sure if trial has started yet or not, but it doesn’t look good for FHTM. Also, FHTM has been in the News in several States because of their suspicious activity. Several papers around the States have written about the FHTM pyramid. The most recent paper (Oct.) is the USA Today, which they did a thorough job on revealing things most people didn’t know about FHTM.

    So is FHTM a pyramid scam? With all the problems this past year, I’m surprised they are still around. From reviewing FHTM’s income disclosure statement, I wouldn’t waste my time or money.

  31. Luis Valesquez // November 28, 2010 at 7:28 am // Reply

    My family got sucked into joining this company with the promise that I would get a green card in 3 months. It was all BS. Two of my cousins were deported and I have IRS issues becasue of the bogus SS# the Fortune NSM told me to use.

    Stay clear of these guys. They will make promises and then ruin your life.

  32. Brittney Marie // February 10, 2011 at 7:13 am // Reply

    No they are all rumours…The actual fortune hi-tech marketing gives you all the business strategies for how to deal with the online business.

  33. shanemiller // March 3, 2011 at 2:08 am // Reply

    FHTM has helped hundreds of people to develop their lifestyle into a very lavish way.This business is very beneficial..Even i am working as an independent representative at Fortune Hi-Tech Marketing,Inc.You should also try it out guys.

  34. shanemiller // March 19, 2011 at 3:28 am // Reply

    No FHTM is not a pyramid scheme.They are just rumours about it.FHTM has got many benefits which everyone should get if they are putting that much efforts in the business..Just try and put your best and see the results.

  35. PERFECT SCAM….LIKE MADDOFF…

  36. My upline in Lightyear Wireless created a comparison site He’s been warning people for years not to fall victim to the lies and it looks like he was right on the money.

  37. Curtis Shepherd // July 16, 2011 at 9:11 pm // Reply

    It is strange to me that a majority of you think you and your experience or the lack there of entitles you to call FHTM, or any other company for that matter, a scam . You don’t own that right. Our legal system kind of keeps those rights for the good ole USofA. It seems to me that a large number of people can’t think for themselves, and make decisions before they do thier reserch. Let’s see, be an adult, admit you got into something that you could not handle, and tell all the people the truth. Always look before you leap, not all people are cut out for sales, and even fewer can manage success, man, couldn’t even tell a mlm rep with a good pitch the brutal truth, I CAN’T,DON’T HAVE THE GUMPTION, ABILITY, OR UNDERSTANDING TO make it in mlm.
    Risky? absolutly. Are there misleading reps out there? You bet cha, in more companies than just this, they’re called liars, and they’re everywhere. Try to look at it this way. Remember the kids when we were little that said “If you don’t play how I want to play, I’m going home.” well, this is them as adults.
    As for you reps out there, if your mlm co. is legal, and FHTM is,then try to tell it straight, and that you do have to work hard, and even at that, not eveyone makes it. And try not to prey on these other weak minded people.
    A response is not needed as I myself take great pride in doing things my way. Not always successful, but have fun trying. Life is to short not to try to do new things. Maybe mlm is not for you. If not maybe you can learn to do something, don’t know what, use your imagination, if you have one, Hey, maybe you can teach me to type and use proper punctuation and some spelling too.

    Have fun at something
    Curtis Shepherd

  38. My husband is currently a Rep and we do not have to have any customers. We are our only customer. We spend enough money to qualify as 10 pple per month. It is costing us alot of money to make it to the top. Our first check was for $19 after paying $615. I can not wait for him to sign pple up cus w/o the recruits we will not make any money. I am trying very hard to support my husband but I KNOW this is a SCAM!!!! So heart broken!!! We are not helping anyone to make money by being our own customers. Oh well, guess I have to stay at it cus he wants it so bad!!!!

  39. Chad, the difference between Walmart and FHTM is that Walmart is not trying to recruit people to sell their stuff. The consumer walks into Walmart, buys his or her toothbrush, motor oil and blue jeans, and leaves. There are no ‘levels’ at play that aren’t standard for retail, and certainly no incentives to insert *more* levels in between.

  40. let me give you my story.joined dec 2010.made regional manager manager jan 2011.my paycheck from fhtm 100.00. in sep 2011,with 120 people in my downline.my check was 58.00 for sept 2011.i did not “recruit”any one in the month of sept.that is when i exited fhtm.the real truth…..if you can and enjoy recruiting people 100 percent of the time (and not telling people that the money you will be saving on your monthly bills will be about 22 cents)and not selling any products,you can make money….but it will cost you about 165.00 a month for 10 points.thanks.

  41. You don’t make money from recruiting new members, you make money by bringing customers to their companies. Which in return is deducted from the company’s advertising budget as the old ways of media and advertisements are no longer effective. We are in the age of the internet and FHTM is creating a new effective platform for the future. This is the shift we’ve been waiting for.

    Imagine we live in a world where 5% of the population control 95% of the populations money where as the 95% of the population only control 5% of the populations money… So if the poor get poorer, how are the rich getting richer?? It’s time to even that scale and make everything proportionate. Let’s stimulate the economy give them the money so that people can buy houses again and do things for themselves. What is so wrong with that??

    FHTM is creating more opportunity then what the economy has out there for ‘jobs’… a place where I take a risk everyday knowing that one day i’ll retire with just enough pension to wipe my ass with. No thanks.

  42. After reading so many comments, wow.I was part of a FHTM meeting lastnight and a rep and his wife are reps for FHTM well that started by introducing thier lives and how joining FHTM made them very wealthy and how they can now afford a lot of thing being away a couple point from becoming executive…receiving weekly checks well it sounded very promising and out of 20 that were their a good fifteen signed up paying a bundle of five points or ten to get started averaging them 249-359.wow I was amazed on how easy these ppl fell for it.. in their minds the rep garanteed them 750 by the end of the month after they signed up a team of three. Didn’t make sense to me but well like some pf say if it works for do it.. and if your a risktaker risk it.. too much for me. They urged me and four others but I wanted to do my research first.. and having a family and f/t job don’t think it would work for me..I just don’t see how you would want to make your family and friends to cough up 300 dollars each promising them lies….

  43. FHTM SUCKS AND IS NOTHING BUT A SCAM!!!!

  44. FHTM allows broke individuals to spend their welfare money to get into the scam in hopes of making real wealth. Unfortunately that NEVER happens as these people are required to buy hundreds of dollars monthly of crap they never sell to anyone else or really need. The residual income is under $5.00 monthly.. What a joke. Recruit- recruit – recruit is all they care about. The products are a disguise to hid the fact that they are an ILLEGAL PYRAMID SCHEME and are defrauding tens of thousands of people each year.

  45. Status update By Darla DiGrandi

    For those of you that do not already know, I have left Fortune and moved to a new Network Marketing Company. Below are the reasons why.

    Nearly 5 years ago a local business owner introduced me to a Network Marketing company. I saw a way to save & make some extra money on things I was already doing and using. I had no idea at the time where it would lead me and it ended up saving my life at that time from the recession.

    It eventually retired me from the hair industry and taught me a new industry that I LOVE today! An industry that is based upon people helping people where your success is measured by how many people on your team are making money and achieving their goals!

    From there I went on to make over $1 million dollars in that company and promoted to the top position in less than 2 years.

    Facts & Numbers don’t lie, people do!

    > Our first year in the business we ranked #25 in the USA and made over $300,000 and had many people making over $5,000 a month with a team of less than 3000 people.

    > This past 2012 they combined the USA & Canada numbers together & we ranked #13 overall (#11 in USA), up 14 spots from our first year. But… listen closely when I tell you we made about $100,000 LESS than our first year! And ONLY one person on our team of over 25,000 people is currently making more than $5,000 a month.

    > We have been on the top 15 GLOBAL leader board 53 of the past 57 months. This proves we are producers in the company and not just lucky. We used to make $20-$40k a month and now its $8-$15k. And still on the top 15 GLOBAL leader board.

    > The norm for nationwide weekly presentation meetings used to be 100-300 people in attendance and monthly trainings with 500-1000, prompting Training Centers to open across the country to handle all the growth. Now weekly meetings are a dozen at best and there are not even meetings in some of those locations and Training Centers are being shut down.

    > My first full year there was approx 5,000 people at the annual convention for which I was the emcee. This past year I was also one of the emcees and there was approx 2,500 in attendance (half the size).

    > Many leaders are making their lowest pay in their careers and cant even make their FREE BMW payment. Having 70 Executives in my down line, I am able to see their numbers and it breaks my heart to see that NONE of those 70 ESMs are doubling their E code! These are good hard working people struggling with the “What am I doing wrong” syndrome.

    > Not to mention how many Pres Ambassadors, Platinum’s and Nationals are making less than $5,000 per month and having to go back to getting jobs to pay their bills. These are good people that know how to build a team. Once again it’s not them, it’s the “system”.

    After YEARS of CONSTANT compensation plan changes and product & service changes, this is not the same company I joined nearly 5 years ago. Leaving our company is not something we wanted to do. It was something that as a leader, we need to do. Leaders are responsible for taking people towards their WHY, not away from it. We did not take this decision lightly. It was a grueling decision. But we could no longer sit back and ignore “the writing on the walls”.

    This letter is being released to address the rumors and lies that are being spread by those at the VERY top of the corporate company and the PA and PSM at the top of the west coast. The company plans to “recode” my former team to this PA and PSM. Another Fix-A-Flat attempt. The objective from the tops is to make Scott & I look greedy and lazy and to make our new comp plan look bad.

    Take time to research and reflect back on the facts in your business. Don’t listen to hear say or rumors. Ask to see proof of current income from people at the top or that are trying to recode you. Call me if you have any questions 760-578-7183 and if you want me to keep it confidential, I will!

    Darla DiGrandi

  46. Derek on July 24th said: “You people who are talking bad about FHTM are hilarious! You say its so bad and that its a scam and in three years it will be shut down?? Ok lets make a bet in 2013 that FHTM will be shut down. if its not all you morons are gonna look so stupid and everyone who stuck in it well lets just say there will be more millionaires and you will still be just getting by.”

    NOW YOU ARE THE MORON AND THE IDIOT. THE COMPANY HAS BEEN SHUT DOWN THE FEDS AND THE ATTORNEY GENERAL!!

  47. The FTC shut down FHTM for its illegal activities on January 28, 2013. Some say that day should become a national holiday because millions have been scammed and now have a shot at redemption and restitution.

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