MONAT is a relatively new player in the multi-level marketing (MLM) game, having just opened for business in 2014. They offer products in the health and beauty space, more specifically anti-aging products for the hair and skin. Even though it has only been in business a few years, MONAT has received its fair share of complaints. MONAT has actively fought the allegations against its products, and the company continues to recruit new distributors into the organization.
MONAT Company Overview
History of MONAT
MONAT was founded in October 2014 by Mr. Luis Urdaneta and his family. Mr. Urdaneta is the Chairman of the Board of the ALCORA group which is the parent company of MONAT. The ALCORA group also owns other direct selling companies such as L’EUDINE Global which specializes in premium beauty and wellness products.
MONAT was started with the intention of taking advantage of the multi-billion dollar hair care industry as well as leveraging the ever-growing direct marketing sales force. Urdaneta sees the company as a way to provide an amazing business opportunity to a wide audience and allow them to achieve financial success. True to the direct selling business model, Urdaneta is quoted as saying about the company, “To be truly successful, you need to invest in the success of those around you.”
For a company as young as MONAT, it has been subject to a litany of complaints and lawsuits. Surprisingly, nearly every complaint and lawsuit are related to MONAT’s physical products. There seem to be no allegations of illegal pyramid scheme behavior. If there are any such claims, they are greatly overshadowed by the product complaints.
The main consensus of the complaints is that the shampoo and other hair care products cause scalp damage and hair loss. There are multiple 7 figure lawsuits pending which make this claim, and many of them are attempting to achieve class-action status. In addition, there are over 500 complaints against the company with the Better Business Bureau resulting in a D- rating overall.
A quick internet search yields hundreds of photos from people who claim to have used the product and now have terrible sores or other issues on their scalp. There is even a Facebook group with over 12,000 members for people to share their horror stories from using the company’s products. Interestingly enough, MONAT is not taking the bad press lying down.
The company has instead gone on the offensive and filed their own lawsuit against one of the creators of the Facebook group mentioned above. They are suing Vickie Harrington in Federal court for $225,000 on claims that she spread information about the company that she knew to be false. How all these lawsuits play out is yet to be seen, but one has to think that where there is smoke, there is fire.
Current Company Structure
MONAT Global is a privately held company headquartered in Miami, FL. Many of the top executives within the company are part of the Urdaneta family, including current CEO Ray Urdaneta, who is the son of the founder and Chairman. MONAT has experienced tremendous growth in the last few years.
Since 2016, the company has seen revenues increase over 750% to a current annual revenue of over $360 million. This was good enough to earn the company the #2 spot on the list of South Florida’s Fastest Growing Companies over $25 Million. Fueling this growth is a team of around 440 full-time employees and a whole host of distributors, or Market Partners, as they are called.
MONAT Product Lines
The company essentially focuses on one specific niche which is naturally based, anti-aging products. Most of their products focus on hair care, and they tout the fact that their products are natural. So much so that the company name is derived from a combination of the term “modern nature.”
Product lines include a variety of shampoos, rejuvenating oils, and other hair treatments. MONAT states that the products all undergo extensive clinical testing and are made with only the highest quality products. However, like most MLM products, there is no requirement of FDA testing or approvals.
Customers may choose from a multitude of hair care products for both men and women, and the company even has a few hair products for children. In addition, many anti-aging skin care products are also offered. Finally, you can even find products for your furry friends! MONAT now offers products for your pet such as shampoo and conditioner.
Company Marketing Practices
Most newer MLM’s market primarily through social media and internet marketing. However, given the amount of publicly available scrutiny of MONAT’s products on social media platforms, the company often turns to more traditional marketing tactics. Word of mouth and traditional networking are two of the biggest ways the company markets their products today.
As previously mentioned, the company is also fighting back against the negative information on the internet. The company continues to release statements about the safety of their products and the rigorous clinical testing that they go through. This does help with the ability to market via the internet, but it takes time to overcome negative feedback.
Making Money with MONAT
According to the company website, MONAT offers one of the most lucrative compensation models available in the direct-selling industry in America. But, just how much can a Market Partner expect to earn by selling the company’s products? In short, don’t quit your day job just yet.
While the compensation model itself may be generous, the data doesn’t lie. The average base Market Partner averages about $85 per month in income. While the income does increase as you move up the leadership tiers, the number of people achieving those levels decreases. On the high end, Senior Executive Directors are making over $100k per month. Factoring in all levels, the average active distributor earns around $2,000 per year. Although this does not include any business expenses incurred.
How to Enroll
Enrollment with the company as a Market Partner is simple. Navigate over to the website and sign up with the click of a few buttons. You can choose to sign up under a specific Market Partner if you know one or you can choose to have one selected for you. The signup fee is a minimum of $99 and up to $500+ depending on which starter kit you select.
Your starter kit does include sample products and quite a few resources to help with the business side of things. You’ll also get a website where people can purchase products from you. In order to remain active, you’ll need to pay an annual fee of $49 going forward.
Upon enrollment as a Market Partner, you can begin earning a commission on the products you sell. You earn a 30% commission on all your retail sales and a 15% commission on all VIP customer sales. In addition, there are opportunities for numerous bonuses based on sales volume produce by you and your downline.
In addition to regular sales, there are many ways to earn by recruiting new Market Partners. You can earn nearly a 50% commission on new Market Partners who sign up and purchase the larger starter kits. You can also earn commissions and bonuses up to five levels deep in your downline. As far as MLM’s are concerned, MONAT’s compensation plan is very generous. Sadly, in reality, most people do not end up earning much at all.
Sales and Marketing Techniques
Traditionally, social media is one of the largest marketing techniques used by modern MLM’s. However, MONAT is a little different due to all the negativity about the company on the internet. Market Partners seem to have the most success through traditional networking and word of mouth techniques. Partners also see success by hosting parties and demonstrating products while they educate potential customers on the products.
MONAT also has specific rules about how their products can be sold by Market Partners. Some internet marketing, such as pay per click (PPC) campaigns are allowed. However, listing items on auction sites such as eBay is prohibited.
How Does Monat Compare to Other MLMs?
When comparing compensation plans, MONAT looks very attractive on paper. Their compensation plan is very competitive, and their products serve a huge market in the hair care industry. However, the company has received a ton of negative feedback, and the cost to become and remain a distributor is quite high. Overall, the average earnings for distributors is average to slightly above average compared to other MLM programs. With only about 200,000 Market Partners in the company, the market for MONAT is less saturated than some other popular MLM’s today.
MONAT is a legitimate company that has experienced tremendous growth over the past few years. Enrolling as a distributor, or Market Partner, is simple but expensive. There are many ways to earn commissions and bonuses with their attractive compensation plan, but most distributors don’t end up making much money. The company sells an assortment of anti-aging products, but their product reviews are not good. MONAT has a very negative reputation online, but their sales and revenues continue to grow.