I would like to put in a formal complaint about Thrive Learning Institute. In July of 2008 I decided to go forth with Thrive on a new business website for an investment of $5.703.00. My initial investment was supposed to pay for all the learning materials, advisors, website & SEO Package. I was told that if I did not make my initial investment back within 1 year that I would be eligible for a refund - a “100% money back refund”.
I also signed a contract stating that Thrive Learning Institute believed in their program so highly that after my initial 12 week consulting period with the advisors, if I made no profit, that I would continue to have access to the advisors via email, and chat as well as access to all the online information.
I have made $0.00, and I had made $0.00 after my initial 12 weeks. After 4 months my login no longer worked for their site and they no longer replied to my emails. I could not chat either as I could not log into the thriveli.com website. After repeated emails and speaking to Person A in tech support and Person B, C and D I was told my login would be re-instated and it never was.
I called August 17th of last year and spoke to M at 866-512-6740 x ** requesting my refund and I was told a manager would get back to me. I have called several times and no one gets back to me. I called 866-334-3672, I gave up on the 866-512-6740 number as no one answers the phone now, this morning and I was told that there was no record of me in their computer system and a manager would have to get back to me. Three hours later I heard no response from the “manager” so I called back and let them know I had opened a BBB complaint, FTC complaint and IC3 complaint. Suddenly I got a call right back from a Jerk.
Mr. Jerk said I was not eligible for a refund and their company does not give out refunds even though I was promised one. He was snotty and rude and only offered me more consulting. He also said he has no record of me contacting Thrive past July 27, 2008. I have emails proving such. People who I corresponded with along the way, I wrote down their names and Mr. Jerk informed me that no such people exist. When I questioned him about the number I was told to call when I started the program, 866-512-6740 x **, I was told that number is not valid for Thrive and they do not work with that company anymore.
I am blogging to prevent anyone else from falling for this scam. I have also contacted every government agency I can for a refund. If anyone calls you with something that sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Take it from me. I can think of so many wonderful things I could have done with my $5,703.00 dollars, only If I was smart & hung up the phone!!
LINDON, UTAH -- The sales floor (Momentum Marketing/The Summit Group) completely misrepresented themselves and told me I would make my investment back in 30 to 90 days with only 8-10 hours of work per week (not even close). They did not give a realistic estimate of how much additional cost and time would be involved with the opportunity they offered. I thought I was signing up with Online Data Institute. This is not true. When I went to my e-mail to electronically sign the contract, the contract was by Momentum Marketing.
After signing the contract, I was sent a duplicate copy of the contract, with one change. The contract heading was now THE SUMMIT GROUP. Another E-mail from the summit group mentioned Thrive Learning Institute and that was the first time the school name was mentioned. I received this email on the third day of their cancellation policy after the contract was signed (I had no way to investigate the school I was about to attend and no time to cancel. I didn't even know what I was getting myself into). Then, my monthly statements come from a company called DUVERA FINANCIAL. Who is this? I did not even know what company I was dealing with anymore. Seems they use layer upon layer of fictitious business names to cover their asses.
I have no marketing experience and poor at best computer skills and had known idea what I was in for. Still I was approved for this opportunity package that had to do with my credit rating and not my ability or skills to see this business through. After beginning this program, I felt overwhelmed at the additional cost and hours and hours of work (not just 8-10 hours a week and the package price, that I was pitched). I feel the coaches keep running you in circles until you just want to quit. They are unfriendly, unorganized and don't seem to care if you are successful or not. They don't recognize when you are lost and frustrated.
When you ask those questions that are too technical they tell you they will get back to you. When you ask them for their honesty and about their own e-business(s), they are uncomfortable, evasive and don't seem to be honest with you. They don't contact you when they say, and leave you waiting for them to respond to your e-mails. This feeling I had to quit was worse than any job, school or other venture I've ever been involved with. I don't believe they are coaches after all. They are not motivating, inspiring and they sure don't take you by the hand and force you to be successful.
Just people following what they are trained to say (Found out later they are students right out of high school who are hired and trained what to say). The commitment letter I wrote, as requested (sounded so legitimate at the start this course), was never mentioned again by anyone and I now feel it was just part of the deception.
After the initial 90 days I was under undue stress to try to complete my coaching sessions and start making money to pay back my investment. I felt hopelessly trapped. The 12-week training sounded fine, to me a beginner, but what I did not understand is you only have 12 weeks to figure all this information out before your 12 weeks are up.
After this time, you are only allowed to contact them through e-mails and live chat. This is not what I signed up for. As a beginner you don't know all this till you have already put in loads of time and money. I have spent over 180 hours of my time with this system watching their videos, research, marketing assignments and business building (visits and phone calls to my tax professional, newspaper, and city hall). I still was not close even working on my website.
After doing some research I found out that the information for all this material is out there very cheap or free on the internet. There is even low-cost software to help you build a website. Of course I feel taken and fed up. I was charged several months for web hosting on my personal website.
Again, I have not even begun to build my personal website. I've spent the last 8 months trying to recover financially. I've spent the last 3 months worrying about the money I borrowed to pay off these crooks, during these tough economic times. I trusted them as mentors to guide me in the right direction, keep me motivated and teach me what I needed to learn to be successful.
I learned, I was misled into thinking I would be dealing 1 on 1 with a personnel Internet Guru mentor, not a bunch of so-called "coaches", who wasted as much of my valuable time as possible in a diabolical scheme to deplete me of time, money and/or quit out of sheer frustration. I learned Thrive has approximately a 1 in 10,000 success rate (if that). I learned that there are reputable companies out there that will build (not teach) and market (they are professionals / not me) your website for the kind of money I paid. I also learned, a bit about how scammers operate and hide in the state of Utah.