Reader Larry posted a disturbing account of how and why buyers of the Red Bull vending “franchise” were allegedly scammed by one of the world’s richest men.
Are you familiar with Red Bull, CCA and/or their vending business opportunity? Please share your insight with a comment below.
Based on evidence we have gathered from all over the country, it is our belief that when we the machines owners, began receiving the machines we purchased, Red Bull’s distribution network, which is made up entirely of independent distributors, revolted.
Red Bull distributors had signed agreements for exclusive territories with Red Bull, long before we were sold our machines. They considered that when Red Bull sold those same territories to us for the placement of machines, it was a violation of those exclusive territory agreements they already had in place with Red Bull. I would suspect that their claims may have had merit.
Red Bull was clearly aware that they were far more dependent on their distributors then they would ever be on us, because they didn’t have a network of their own, and that they also had a potential legal problem if they were seen to have breached a portion of their agreement with the distributors that spelled out the exclusive territories.
Red Bull then made the corporate decision to pull the plug on CCA, to stop the sales of the machines, and to try the shift the blame of the duplicate territories onto CCA. Red Bull then adopted the most devious and downright criminal portion of their plan to extricate themselves from this matter, by actively siding with the distributors to keep us out of the market, or drive us out if we were already there. Red Bull and the distributors at this time were pretending that they were trying to help us place the machines, when in actuality, they were treacherously working to get rid of us.
Red Bull during that time told us, in writing, that they were working with the distributors to help us place the machines. But let me ask does it make sense that this Multi-Billion Dollar Company, with all the assets at their disposal, they didn’t succeed in helping anyone place any of our machines?
After CCA folded, we weren’t aware that our local distributor resented the idea that we might place a machine in “their” territory, and that they worked with Red Bull to make sure that didn’t happen.
As far as we know, Red Bull did not succeed in helping any of us place even one machine. But instead of Red Bull just taking the financial hit and buying the machines back from us when they realized the problem created with their distributors, this greedy foreign company chose to allow us to be financially destroyed, rather than just pay us back for this mistake.
They waited until the financial strain of not generating any profit from our investment grew so oppressive, that they then “offered” to buy back the machines at 25-40% of the value we paid. Many of us had no other option but to sell them back at a loss.
But funnily enough, right after the machines were sold back to Red Bull, those machines that Red Bull said they couldn’t help us place, were placed almost immediately by the distributors. We have plenty of documented evidence to this effect.
So ask yourself, should we feel as if Red Bull did us a favor when they bought back those machines back from us at 25% of what we paid for them? Or do you believe, as we believe, that Red Bull sold us a franchise, and then worked to make sure we couldn’t establish our franchise?
You may not know what law this violates, but your gut tells you they broke some sort of law, doesn’t it? Well that is why we are staying in this fight. We’re doing it for our families, as a warning for others and for society’s need to punish huge corporations who willfully violate the law.
And one last thought to keep in mind: According to Forbes Magazine, the 49% owner of Red Bull, Dietrich Mateschitz, has increased his net worth from 2.4 Billion to 4.0 Billion since the sale of the machines began in 2005!
That is a gain of $1.6 BILLION dollars to his net worth since his company scammed our families out of their savings.
According to Forbes, in 2006 Mr. Mateschitz was the 317th richest person in the world; this year he is listed as the 260th richest person in the world.
When asked for his help in this matter, Mr. Mateschitz, after some hesitation, finally told us he was not interested in our problems. I think he probably needed to spend his time counting his ever growing pile of Euros, all the while laughing at how easy it was to scam hundreds of hard working Americans out of their money, and in their own country, right under the noses of their own government.
Companies like Red Bull need to hear the message that in American business, you need to play by the rules or you will be held accountable. Help us spread the word, to send a message to this company, and to pressure our government to act. Thank you for your help. – LARRY
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