Lately, I have a long-lost friend calling me out for a drink. Without hesitation, I am more than happy to meet up with him, a successful businessman. Well, we started off with very casual conversation from politic to investment. Yes, investment is my all-time favorite topic and he knew it. Once my hot button was pressed, he share with me the Genneva Gold Investment Scheme.
Through Genneva's unique wealth sharing platform, you are not only the owner of the gold bullion in hand, you also will get 1.8-2.5% cash return (hibah) every month for 3 months under Genneva's Syariah principle-based product plan. (see picture below)
- The return is too good to be true. Minimum of 21.6% annualized return, some more it is Guaranteed!!! How Genneva going to guaranteed such attractive return?
- Can Genneva generate better return from other investment using the capital? (Better than Warren Buffett?) If not, the business model for sure will fail and it's a scam...
- Some said Genneva sell gold at a rate more than 20% above market price? Some claims that this is Genneva's admin and processing costs. If that's true, Genneva is making huge profit from us then giving us back the said hibah. Why invest then?
- Yes. You can get the physical gold bullion after 4 months. But, how are you going to store it? Investors should look at the cost of holding gold bullion too. That is investment expenses which will eat into the return.
- Who is going to certify that the gold bullion was genuine? UPDATED @ 03:57:54 PM 16-05-2013KUALA LUMPUR, May 16 — Four gold traders from Genneva Sdn Bhd walked free today after being acquitted of 224 counts of money laundering and illegal deposit-taking said to be worth over RM141 million.
Sessions Court judge Rozana Ali Yusof ruled that the accused — directors Datuk Ng Poh Weng, 63, Datuk Marcus Yee Yuen Seng, 61, Datuk Chin Wai Leong, 37, and former director Liew Chee Wah, 59 — had conducted a genuine gold trading business.
According to The Star Online, the judge said the buy-back concept was found to be nothing but a marketing strategy employed by the company to assure the buyer that the gold bars were genuine gold.
Ng was charged with 93 counts of money-laundering, while his colleagues Yee and Chin were slapped with 40 and 61 counts respectively.
They were also accused of taking deposits from the public in their capacity as directors without a valid licence, an offence under the Banking and Financial Institutions Act.
Liew, who has since left Genneva, had faced 30 charges.
All four were said to have committed the offences between July 2008 and June 2009.
Lawyers Mohamed Haniff and K. Selva Kumaran had acted for Ng, Yee and Chin while Keppy Wong represented Liew.
Deputy public prosecutors Alvin Ong and Mardziatun Nisa Ahamadul Kabir, acting for Bank Negara, applied for a stay of judgment and for the seized gold and money to remain frozen pending their appeal. The stay application is set to be heard tomorrow.
Genneva was among several companies that had been raided by the central bank last year over a dubious gold trading scheme, which also included the similarly named Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd and its affiliates.
Bank Negara had frozen Genneva Malaysia’s accounts, cheques and other assets worth RM99.8 million in cash besides seizing 126kg in gold bullion on suspicion the company violated various banking and financial laws which include taking deposits without giving gold in return, money laundering, evading taxes, appointing agents without licence, failing to file statutory documents, and misrepresenting itself as an investment firm and giving false descriptions on its business after several people lodged complaints with the police.
Singapore’s Commercial Affairs Department has also conducted a similar operation against Genneva Pte Ltd in Singapore.
An estimated 60,000 people nationwide lost their money after Genneva Malaysia’s gold bullions and accounts were frozen by Bank Negara last October on suspicion of violating several financial and banking laws including illegal deposit taking, money laundering and tax evasion.
Bank Negara previously said its investigation showed Genneva Malaysia’s debt was over 10 times the amount of its assets despite having sold the precious metal at up to 25 per cent higher than the market rate, signalling that the venture was unsustainable in the long run.
The central bank also said early checks showed that Genneva Malaysia had relied heavily on cash from new customers to keep it afloat.
It also said the records showed Genneva Malaysia has not paid out more than RM80 million to customers who had traded in their gold to the company for the guaranteed cash payments.
Genneva Malaysia has some 60,000 customers and a monthly turnover of RM2 billion, according to its traders interviewed by The Malaysian Insider in October 2012, but the company’s website stated 50,000 customers and a turnover of RM3 billion.
The gold trading business is unregulated in Malaysia.
Last December, nine investors sued Genneva Malaysia and four of its directors — named as Tengku Muhaini Sultan Ahmad Shah, Philip Lim Jit Meng, Ahmad Khairuddin Ilias and Tan Lian Keng — to get back over RM2 million in investments, claiming the firm had carried out fraud and misrepresented the scheme as compliant with syariah law.
Disgruntled investors are claiming that they are still in a limbo over the status of their investments with gold investment company Genneva (under Genneva Sdn Bhd and Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd).
Following the sessions court ruling on Tuesday that Bank Negara Malaysia has the right to freeze Genneva's assets, investors told theSun that this does not change anything, as they have never had assurance that they will be repaid.
"It does not matter whether Genneva's assets have been frozen as a lot of us believe Genneva will not give what is owed to us anyway," said James Lim, a businessman.
"The present directors have been unresponsive to all demands.
"We have never received any reimbursement or assurance in any way," he said, claiming that Genneva has only asked customers for more money.
Lim claims the Facebook page, Genneva Malaysia Supporters, is "a front staged by Genneva directors to alleviate blame from themselves and direct it towards Bank Negara."
"That Facebook page has been rallying customers to lodge police reports and pay for a judicial review.
"They appealed to elderly customers and those with special medical needs to make their plight known and lodge a report against Bank Negara," he said, adding that another link to their website, www.gms101.wordpress.com, led customers to an article guiding them what to say in the report.
"A special clause was added after the reports were lodged, stating that customers were not coerced to make reports and that the customers all had concrete evidence against Bank Negara before lodging reports," he said.
The Facebook page has also asked customers to churn out RM50 each to pay lawyers to file a judicial review with Bank Negara.
"As of now, the review has been cancelled as they could not meet the 90-day deadline to file it and customers have not been given any updates.
"They did not disclose how much money had been collected, where it has gone, and customers are not allowed to meet with the lawyers that their money hired," Lim said.
Fellow investor Michelle Kwan, a businesswoman, said she, too, has failed to contact the Genneva directors.
Echoing Lim's claims on customers being asked to file for a judicial review, Kwan claims that Genneva had threatened to abandon customers if they do not do as asked.
"They do it in very subtle ways but it's enough to convince some customers who are less educated," she opined.
"We have absolutely no idea where our money is and if we will ever get it back. We are in complete darkness," she said.
Many of us fall prey to financial scams which can result in huge losses. Operators of these scams normally entice potential victims with high returns and convince you to invest your hard earned money which you will eventually lose in the end. These operators are constantly reinventing old scams to avoid getting caught. Therefore, it is best to be very cautious and aware of any deal that sounds too good to be true.
Be aware of the following financial scams:
Foreign currency trading involves the activity of investing large sums of money in foreign currency with the objective of getting high returns depending on the movements of the exchange rates.If you are asked to invest in foreign currency by parties other than authorised dealers, it is most likely a scam! Illegal operators usually target job seekers and investors who are looking to make a quick buck for the investments. Here are some indications to look out for: Placement of attractive advertisements to lure others to listen to their convincing but bogus marketing plan Have their headquarters overseas with impressive offices and IT facilities
Conduct training to prospective employees on the principles of foreign exchange trading and hands on exercises using dummy or fake transactions under an environment controlled by the operator.
Hire employees based on commission without a proper employment letter or contract stipulating employment terms and conditions By impressing them with a marketing strategy that promises quick and high returns By portraying a professional and reputable image Allowing potential investors to operate their trading account via internet
Using elaborate tools of the trade such as a news screen showing movements in exchange rates to give that professional and legitimate business look.
The operator will ask you to enter into an official agreement which will be sent to their overseas based headquarters where it is usually left unsigned. Stay away from opportunities that sound too good to be true Avoid any company that predicts or guarantees large profits Be wary of remitting cash on the Internet or by mail Be sure to get the company’s performance track record Ask questions and do not commit immediately If you have been offered a job to look for potential investors or have been approached to invest in the foreign currency market from a company, you can lodge a report at the following address: FOREIGN EXCHANGE ADMINISTRATION
Bank Negara Malaysia
Jalan Dato’ Onn, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
For more information on foreign currency trading, download the booklet or visit our FAQs on Foreign Currency Trading.
By Liau Y-Sing - Oct 30, 2012 5:48 PM GMT+0800
“My mom would say, she got 3 percent per annum placing her money into a fixed-deposit facility with a bank,” said Tan, 38. Genneva also won her father as a customer with its offering of discretionary monthly “gifts” to purchasers of its product. That income source is at risk after Malaysian authorities raided Genneva and three other companies this month for suspected offences such as illegal deposit taking.
“More people are willing to invest in such schemes,” Sujatha Sekhar Naik, the Securities Commission’s head of investor affairs and complaints, said last month before Genneva was raided, referring to the increase in interest in unlicensed investments. “They are becoming more sophisticated. They are following the development of society, the markets and what they’re doing is upping the ante in terms of the types of schemes they offer.”
Malaysian RaidsThe Securities Commission doesn’t regulate gold investments. Genneva was raided by the Malaysian Police, the Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism, the Companies Commission and the central bank on Oct. 1, the authorities said in a statement, advising the public to be “cautious in investing their money to avoid becoming victims of activities that are illegal.” Four days later, raids were carried out on Pageantry Gold Bhd., Caesar Gold Sdn. and Worldwide Far East Bhd.
Genneva said in an Oct. 24 statement on its website that it would be “totally wrong” to say the company was engaged in illegal deposit taking. “Our legal advisers say for the time being we cannot have any comment on this,” Jamsen Lim, Genneva’s general manager, said when contacted by Bloomberg News.
Authorities will complete all investigations as quickly as possible, Bank Negara Malaysia Governor Zeti Akhtar Aziz told reporters in Kuala Lumpur today. “We know that there are many anxious depositors and investors, so will expedite as fast as we can so that there will be an early conclusion,” she said.
‘Negative Impact’Interest in unlicensed investments is on the rise because of low interest rates and the desire for higher returns as consumers seek to boost incomes, according to the Securities Commission’s Sujatha. The regulator warned against 25 unlicensed activities offered by individuals and companies last year, the second highest on record since 2003 and up from 13 questionable operations in 2010, according to data on its website.
The hunt for returns is suggested by investment and deposit movements. After the central bank cut its benchmark rate to a record-low 2 percent during the 2009 global recession, deposits growth slowed at the start of 2010 even as the expansion in nominal gross domestic product accelerated.
Net assets of Malaysian unit trusts have grown more than twice the pace of bank deposits in five of the last seven years, according to data from the central bank and Securities Commission.
“Lower interest rates will have a negative impact on deposit growth as investors search for higher-yielding assets,” said Ho Woei Chen, an economist at United Overseas Bank Limited Ltd. in Singapore. Still, the “current interest rate in Malaysia is not too low if you take into consideration inflation.” Higher property prices in Asia have also been caused by capital inflows and “stronger fundamentals” in the region, not solely low interest rates, she said.
Inflation RateMalaysia’s consumer prices rose 1.3 percent in September from a year earlier. The central bank’s benchmark rate is 3 percent. The average fixed deposit rate for a 12-month bank saving is 3.17 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Still, Choo Chin Thye, a 50-year-old printing business owner, said he’s turning to stem cells and oil palm to get better returns than he can garner from deposits.
Since 2008, Choo has put 50,000 ringgit ($16,332) in a plan by Plentiful Gold-Class Bhd. that directs funds from investors into oil palm plantations. The move has earned him yearly returns of more than 8 percent since 2008, he said. He’s also helped design a plan to invest in stem cell storage equipment, which he says will offer annual fixed returns of 8 percent for the first five years after it commences.
Subprime Lesson“I chose this because it has better yields,” said Choo, who lives in Kuala Lumpur. “With these schemes, the upside is technically unlimited.” He points to other ventures investors can turn to in Malaysia such as one involving rearing the swiftlets that produce birds’ nests, a popular Asian delicacy.
With lessons from the U.S. subprime crisis remaining in many policy makers’ minds, concern that keeping interest rates too low for too long will spur financial risks may have contributed to Zeti’s hesitation to join neighbors from China to South Korea in cutting borrowing costs this year even as the faltering world economy threatens growth.
“With the low interest rate environment, savers and investors are going to keep looking for other types of investments,” said Anthony Dass, chief economist at MIDF Amanah Investment Bank Bhd. “This will be one of the factors Bank Negara Malaysia will consider if it wants to cut interest rates.”
‘Normalizing’ RatesKeeping interest rates too low for too long may lead to the “mispricing of risks” by those who anticipate borrowing costs will stay low, as well as create asset bubbles, Zeti said in March 2010, citing signs that people are buying higher-yielding assets “that pose significant risks.”
She has kept the overnight policy rate at 3 percent since raising it to that level in May 2011, even as neighbors from Thailand to the Philippines eased monetary policy. Bank Negara’s final decision for this year is due Nov 8. The authorities will keep rates unchanged until the second quarter of 2013 when a tightening is forecast, according to the majority of 19 economists in a Bloomberg News survey.
“At this point, it is a rate that provides some decent rate of return on savings and at the same time, it is a rate that provides access to financing by businesses at relatively reasonable costs,” Zeti said in an interview this month. “If you have interest rates that are too low, it provides the incentive to seek better rates of return, and then in terms of mispricing of risk, they go into ventures that are of higher risk. Well, we haven’t seen that.”
Property CurbsMalaysia “normalized” interest rates in 2010 when the economy showed clear signs of recovery, becoming one of the first central banks to start raising rates to prevent the buildup of financial imbalances, Zeti said. Highlighting that rationale in its statements gave a signal for businesses and households that they should consider these risks, she said.
Concern consumers will take on excessive risk and spur asset bubbles prompted the central bank to tighten mortgage lending rules in 2010. Prime Minister Najib Razak raised the real property gains tax on short-term investments in his Sept. 28 budget speech this year.
The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index has climbed more than 9 percent this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Average condominium prices in the capital, Kuala Lumpur, have almost doubled since 2004 to 515,867 ringgit in the second quarter, according a government report.
There may be only so much policy makers can do to deter risky investments.
Genneva has more than 50,000 customers and a turnover of 3 billion ringgit, according to its website. The authorities said assets of the companies raided were seized and frozen to facilitate their investigation into the suspected offences and to protect the interest of the investors.
“It has brought about sleepless nights,” said Tan, who gave up her job with a phone company to become a consultant with Genneva after her father became a customer, saying she was attracted by the chance to learn about gold trading. The raid has “shaken our financial ability for the month,” she said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Liau Y-Sing in Kuala Lumpur at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Phang in Singapore at firstname.lastname@example.org
Status of Cases Investigated
SAYA adalah seorang daripada puluhan ribu pelanggan Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. yang diserbu oleh Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) baru-baru ini.
Saya terpanggil menulis untuk memberitahu sebab-sebab kenapa saya dan mungki
n ramai yang lain memilih untuk membeli emas daripada syarikat Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.
1. Saya beli emas, saya dapat emas, bukan dapat kertas.
2. Genneva memberi hadiah atau 'hibah' (berlandaskan syariah) atas nilai belian emas tadi mengikut tempoh akad yang dipersetujui bersama.
3. Tiada paksaan. Selepas tamat tempoh akad, saya boleh perbaharui akad atas kerelaan sendiri. Saya juga boleh menawarkan kepada Genneva untuk menjual semula emas itu kepadanya atas harga yang dipersetujui bersama, malah saya boleh menjual emas itu kepada sesiapa saja atau di mana saja yang saya suka kerana emas itu adalah milik saya.
4. Proses jual beli adalah telus, ada perjanjian jual beli (S&P) dan mengikut prinsip Al-Bai serta syariah.
Sebagai orang Islam, saya kagum dengan Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. kerana selain berusaha menerapkan nilai Islam dan prinsip syariah dalam urus niaganya, Genneva Malaysia telah membantu meningkatkan kualiti hidup kira-kira 70,000 keluarga di seluruh Malaysia! Bayangkan jika setiap keluarga ada lima ahli, ini bermakna jumlah isi rumah yang menikmati hidup berkualiti hasil daripada membeli emas dan memperolehi hibah daripada Genneva, adalah kira-kira 350,000 orang.
Sejak Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd., mula beroperasi, Genneva Malaysia tidak pernah gagal memberi hibah kepada pelanggan-pelanggannya, walhal pemberian hibah itu hanyalah atas budi bicara dan ihsan syarikat itu semata-mata.
Hakikatnya, hibah inilah yang telah membantu kira-kira 70.000 orang menyara keluarga, membiayai kos perubatan, membiayai persekolahan anak-anak termasuklah yang belajar di universiti di dalam mahupun di luar negara tanpa mengira bangsa, agama mahupun ideologi politik.
Ramai yang mampu melangsaikan hutang bank, kad kredit dan macam-macam lagi perbelanjaan yang disebabkan oleh peningkatan kos sara hidup saban tahun.
Malangnya, apabila Bank Negara dan beberapa agensi kerajaan menyerbu Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. dan merampas peralatan pejabat, rampas emas milik pembeli serta membekukan akaun bank Genneva pada 1 Oktober lalu, maka 70,000 pelanggannya yang menikmati hibah setiap bulan selama ini, menjadi bingung kerana hilang punca pendapatan menerusi hibah bulanan yang dinikmati selama ini.
Dalam kata lain, Bank Negara dan agensi-agensi berkaitan telah menyekat pemberian hibah oleh Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. kepada kira-kira 70,000 pelanggannya.
Akibatnya mereka kehilangan sumber pendapatan yang membantu menyara keluarga mereka selama ini.
Memang benar Bank Negara bertanggung jawab untuk menjaga kepentingan orang ramai. Tapi bagaimana 70,000 pelanggan Genneva Malaysia?
Bukankah mereka juga orang ramai dan rakyat Malaysia?
Jika benar bentuk perniagaan jual beli emas Genneva ini menyalahi undang-undang, kenapa pihak berkuasa mengambil masa begitu lama untuk bertindak, hingga pelanggannya di Malaysia saja sudah mencecah 70,000 orang, wujud cawangan di seluruh negara, malah model perniagaannya telah berkembang ke rantau Asia Tenggara.
Lebih menyedihkan, alasan tindakan Bank Negara dan agensi-agensi terbabit menyerbu Genneva Malaysia adalah sangat rapuh iaitu Genneva Malaysia hanya disyaki melanggar peraturan-peraturan di bawah kawal selia agensi-agensi berkaitan.
Jika hanya disyaki sahaja, memadailah membuat lawatan atau pemeriksaan mengejut dan jika ada asas, beri amaran keras dan beri tempoh kepada Genneva Malaysia untuk betulkan mana-mana bahagian yang tidak betul.
Setidak-tidaknya, kepentingan 70,000 pelanggan Genneva Malaysia tidak terjejas.
Memandangkan Genneva Malaysia telah beroperasi agak lama dengan jumlah pelanggan yang besar, ada baiknya Bank Negara dan agensi-agensi lain membantu para pelanggan Genneva daripada 'menghukum' mereka.
Benarkan Genneva kembali beroperasi dengan segera, pulangkan harta (emas) mereka (rakyat) yang dirampas, cairkan akaun bank Genneva Malaysia dengan kadar segera supaya syarikat itu boleh meneruskan ihsan pemberian hibah kepada para pelanggannya.
Kemudian regularize model perniagaan Genneva ini. Kenakan syarat tertentu dan rangka garis panduan supaya orang ramai lebih jelas. Ini lebih 'membantu' daripada mengambil tindakan 'menghukum' dan bersifat 'menganiaya', yang sebenarnya berpunca daripada kelemahan dan ketidakupayaan Bank Negara dan agensi-agensi terlibat untuk mengawal dan mengambil tindakan sejak awal.
SABRI MANSOR, Pelanggan Genneva Malaysia Sdn. Bhd.
Pelancaran Syariah Genneva yang melanggar etika Islam
Kenyataan itu menasihatkan umat Islam tidak melibatkan diri dalam aktiviti atau transaksi jual beli dan pelaburan emas oleh mana-mana pihak, sama ada syarikat di dalam negara atau luar negara yang bertentangan dengan prinsip jual beli emas seperti yang digariskan oleh syarak dan undang-undang negara.
Abdul Shukor berkata, transaksi jual beli mestilah memenuhi semua rukun jual beli yang digariskan hukum syarak, dan sesuatu transaksi dikira tidak sah sekiranya tidak memenuhi salah satu rukun jual beli. Beliau berkata transaksi juga hendaklah bebas daripada unsur-unsur riba, perjudian, gharar yang berlebihan dan kezaliman. – Bernama
Letter from Bank Negara
We note that you have raised issues with regard to the gold investment of Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd (Genneva). We would like to inform you that buying and selling gold or silver is not under the purview of Bank Negara Malaysia (the Bank), thus the Bank does not issue any license to any company who wish to conduct such activities.
However, if the gold/silver trading - investment scheme clearly offers investment opportunity by collecting deposits from the public and investors are promised investment returns/profits within a certain period of time, whereby the original investment will be refunded or in other words if a company appeared to be involving in illegal deposit taking by using gold/silver to camouflage its activities, it maybe contravene section 25(1) Banking And Financial Institutions Act 1989 (BAFIA).
We have investigated numerous instances involving companies having illegal deposit-taking and trading in gold as their underlying products that might contravene Section 25(1), BAFIA such as Genneva Sdn Bhd, Bestino Group Berhad, Gold Label Sdn Bhd.
For your information, we also monitor these activities very closely and we will not hesitate to conduct investigations should a company appears to be involved in illegal deposit-taking using gold to camouflage its activities.
With regard to the statement made by Genneva:
"The company has fulfilled all requirements and has been given approval by Central Bank as Scheduled Institution under Section 21(1) of the Banking and Financial Institution Act 1989. We are also a company being classified under First Schedule of Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Act 2001 as a "Reporting Institution".
For your information, a scheduled institution has to notify the Bank for its operation under Section 21(1) BAFIA. However, we do not regulate its activities. In this instance, Genneva has submitted its application for change of name as previous notification was made under the name of other company which was acquired by Genneva. The activities described in the application are to conduct the leasing and factoring businesses. Genneva does not require the Bank's approval to conduct the gold bar trading as gold trading is not under the Bank's purview as mentioned above.
Thus, again we would like to take the opportunity to inform members of public that gold trading is not under Bank Negara Malaysia's jurisdiction. Members of public are to be reminded to be more cautious and scrutinize the risk associated with the gold investment before joining any investment scheme which promise higher returns in short-term period.
Charles Ponzi was a genius, without realizing it himself. Born in Italy, he became famous in the early 1920s. He promised clients a 50% profit within 45 days, or 100% profit within 90 days, by buying discounted postal reply coupons in other countries and redeeming them at face value in the United States as a form of arbitrage. But in actual fact, Ponzi was paying early investors using the investments of later investors, plain and simple. Ponzi started his own company – Securities Exchange Company – to promote the scheme (which ultimately known as Ponzi scheme) and from Feb 1920 to July 1920, he made impressive millions of dollars. At one time, Ponzi was making a staggering $250,000 a day – that was back in the 1920s, mind you.
Financial analyst was asked to examine Ponzi’s scheme and it was found that based on Ponzi’s investments, there should be at least 160 million postal reply coupons in circulation. However, there were only about 27,000. It was later found that Ponzi scheme was merely a plan of robbing Piggie to pay Doggie. Charles Ponzi’s surrender to federal authorities brought down 5 banks together with him. His once loyal investors were wiped out, receiving less than 30 cents to a dollar. In total, his investors lost about $20 million in 1920 (about $225 million in 2011 dollars). Using the same scheme 88 years later, Bernie Madoff brought down about $13 billion in investors’ money.
So, was Genneva Malaysia, a company dealing in buying and selling gold products another Ponzi company waiting to collapse? Actually directors of Genneva – Marcus Yee Yuen Seng, Ng Poh Weng and Chin Wai Leong – can use MLM (Multi-level marketing) Pyramid system to do this business. While MLM is more profitable, it’s more cumbersome since the regulatory control is much tighter. Of course you still can get away by appointing UMNO-linked Datuk-Datuk as your company chairman to facilitate license renewal and to close many enforcers’ eyes when irregularities occur.
Genneva brilliantly plays in a grey unregulated area – gold trading. Interestingly, according to the gold exemption order 1986, any Tom, Dick and his pussy cat can hold, borrow, lend, buy, sell or export gold without contravening any laws. In short, it’s easier to move around gold than hold a rally in this country. Genneva was careful not to collect deposits from investors as this action can be seen as crossing into BAFIA’s (Banking and Financial Institutions Act) territory which requires a license from the Central Bank (Bank Negara). Without a need for a license (and renewal) means one less problem in doing business for Genneva.
How the Genneva Gold Investment Scheme works is quite simple. You purchase the physical gold which comes with a S&P (Sales ad Purchase Agreement), a Certificate of Ownership and a Letter of Hibah. The juice of the orgasm was in the form of “Hibah” (or monthly gift) – ranging from 1.8% (50g – 95g of gold purchase) to 2.5% (3kg and above of gold purchase) in cash return every month. That’s a whopping 21.6% – 30% annual return rate, mind you. Warren Buffett must be super idiot not to join Genneva, no? In addition, your initial capital is 100% protected because according to die-hard investors, you can sell back your gold to Genneva at the same price you bought initially.
Who could resist such a proposal – it’s like when you buy sofa sets from IKEA, not only you get the sofa but also 30 cups of Starbucks free latte vouchers every month. And if you don’t like the sofa thereafter, its money back guarantee, no question asked. Gosh, IKEA (in this case) must be really stupid. So far, everything seems to be too good to be true. However, according to Genneva website, the company “does not” gives any undertaking or guarantee the repurchase of the gold products sold to its purchaser. Now, what did mom said about there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. How could there be golden goose hopping around on the street?
First of all, this gold trading is a mega project. Genneva claims to have about 50,000 satisfied clients (or investors) in Malaysia alone. Let’s assume each investor poured in RM100,000 for this once-in-a-lifetime investment – that’s a mind-boggling RM5,000,000,000 (RM5 billion) hot money. Knowing how greedy Malaysians are, the RM100,000 of investment quoted here is a super conservative figure. And here comes the magic. Genneva actually sells its gold to customers at a staggering premium of 20-30 percent. For example, while UOB was selling gold at $74,500 per kilobar, Genneva sells $96,000 per kilobar, on the same date.
And why wouldn’t Genneva laugh all its way to the bank with RM1 billion to RM1.5 billion in profit (20-30%) from these so-called 50,000 “expert” gold investors (*tongue-in-cheek*). Now, do you understand why I call this scheme a mega project? It’s because everything was designed to be gigantic. If you want to fleece others’ money, do it big and systematically. As the Chinese saying – giant chicken does not eat small feeds (*grin*). Adding spices to instil artificial confidence would be to invite heavyweights such as mighty former premier Mahathir (on behalf of the King) for Genneva products’ launching and Prime Minister’s wife, Rosmah Mansor for its Consultants Appreciation Night 2012. Heck, Genneva even has Tengku Muhaini Sultan Ahmad Shah, the Sultan of Pahang’s daughter, as its chairman.
Do you really need to be a rocket scientist for a scheme that gives you 1.8% – 2.5% of cash when the banker already made 20% – 30% in profit upfront? If you think taking 30 bucks from your pocket and return 2 bucks and 50 cents to you every month is the best invention since sliced bread, then you deserve to be scammed. But there’re many great testimonies – not only they’re still keeping the physical gold, they’re also making 30% annual return rate. Of course they do otherwise this scheme won’t work, would they? You need some testimonies for this musical chair game to continue playing. And due to greed, some investors would sell every inch of cloth increasing their investment, which keep the money rolling.
How do you know the gold you’re hugging every night is as pure as it claims? How do you know it’s not tungsten-filled gold bars? Yes dude, jewelry stores on 47th Street and Fifth Avenue in Manhattan discovered a 10-ounce 999.9 gold bar costing nearly $18,000 turned out to be a counterfeit. The bar was filled with tungsten, which weighs nearly the same as gold but costs just over a dollar an ounce. Heck, the gold bar even had stamp of the reputable Swiss Produits Artistiques Métaux Précieux and a serial number. Apparently the victim, Ibrahim Fadl, a dealer himself bought the gold bars from a merchant who has sold him real gold before (watch video below). Previously such fake gold bars case happened in England but now had spread to New York.
If you challenge Genneva investors with questions, they may put a gun to your head. Besides, who cares as long as they continue receiving their Hibah. To the investors, Hibah was the main juice of orgasm but to Genneva, Hibah may be their biggest bait. Frankly, the whole system works as long as the gold price doesn’t crash, people continues to buy gold bars, Genneva continues to generate positive income from their billions of dollars of profit elsewhere, no power struggle within the company and whatnot. For every single Ringgit of your hard-earned money, Genneva can pay you the Hibah for 10-months and still make profit – with not a single cent coming out from the company’s own pocket. It’s your original money that they’re rolling and playing, as simple as that.
Genneva also knows all the 50,000 “happy” investors will not redeem their gold at the same time. If they do, the company will simply go bust simply because they don’t have RM5 billion (based on example above) to take back all the gold bullions (*grin*). With billions of dollars war chest, Genneva was like a mini bank. Perhaps it then uses the money trading Call / Put Option in equities, currency or even gold itself. Worst still, the ultimate objective could be to clean dirty money obtained by illicit means – money laundering. Now, that would be really interesting. What – just because Mahathir launched the company’s products, the company can’t possibly involve in money laundering?
If you do not already know, money laundering is an extreme lucrative business whereby the operator charges 60% or more – meaning for every dollar of your dirty money, you’ll get 40 cents of “clean money” in return. The operator takes the remaining 60 cents due to obvious reason – cost of dynamo detergent, washing machine, electricity and whatnot (*tongue-in-cheek*). When even Casino King, Stanley Ho, used his casinos for money laundering, who are you to say Genneva is not another money laundering vehicle, since the company is not regulated by anyone?
Back in Oct 2010, the directors of Genneva Sdn Bhd – Ng Poh Weng, 60, face 263 charges involving RM185mil while Marcus Yee Yuen Seng, 58, faces 234 charges amounting to RM153mil and Chin Wai Leong, 34, face 210 charges involving RM212mil. Earlier in July 2009, Bank Negara (Central Bank) had frozen their personal and company bank accounts and their asset of gold bars. Later, Genneva Pte Ltd, also a gold trading company in Singapore, with the same directors from Malaysia’s Genneva, lost a lawsuit from one of its investors claiming $190,000 with a second writ of summons for a total sum of $86,000 in the pipeline. If everyone was enjoying 21.6% – 30% annual return with option to sell back the gold bars to Genneva, why would investors sue the company?
Another burning question – if the company’s account and asset were seized and frozen since 2009, how can the directors and company allowed to operate until the latest raid early this month, more than 3-years later? Was Bank Negara sleeping on the job? Were there too many (greedy) hands in the cookie jar, hence the power struggle (or rather money struggle), considering the gigantic amount of money in the coffer (if there’s any left). Or was it purely SOP (standard operating procedure) by any ponzi scheme operator to call it the day by asking the authorities to raid the company itself so that they can stop paying investors, knowing very well nobody would go to jail?
There’re people who made good money from Genneva gold trading scheme but not everybody made it to the finish line. But now that the company is raided, what’s next? Maybe Mahathir can help by declaring Genneva is an honest company that is incapable of cheating the people, the same way he told the High Court that he believed Ling Liong Sik was not capable of cheating the government since Ling is an honest person. As usual, early bird catches the worm and as for the latecomers – remember to join the party early next time, will ya?
Status of Cases Investigated
As many as 35,000 investors and up to a whopping RM10 billion of investment were sucked into Genneva Malaysia Gold Scheme. The problem – Genneva Malaysia’s liabilities exceeded its assets. That was what Awang Adek Hussin, Malaysia Deputy Finance Minister, claimed couple of days ago. Considering PM Najib Razak is the Finance Minister himself, this statement from his deputy was perhaps the closest one can get from Bank Negara’s (Central Bank) investigation after their raid. However, one of Genneva Malaysia’s traders claimed the company has some 60,000 customers with monthly turnover of RM2 billion. On the other hand, Geneva Malaysia’s website boast 50,000 customers and a turnover of RM3 billion.
Whether these gold investors (or rather traders as what Genneva diehard fans would like to be known) actually poured merely RM30,000 or as high as RM285,000 each into the scheme is immaterial. The fact is most of these investors emptied their life savings believing Genneva scheme was a revolutionary and innovative business model – a blue ocean business strategy that could easily put McDonald and Apple Inc. business model to shame. Naturally, these street-smart Gennevarians cried foul and ran amok when their golden goose was slaughtered – by the authorities. They are crying for blood and refuse to wake up from their slumberland.
They are upset the Central Bank took away their cash cow. They are furious they cannot milk their golden cow anymore. They would curse and whack you till kingdom come for suggesting Genneva Gold scheme was actually a brilliant and sophisticated Ponzi scheme. They are crying because their children, parents, grandma, kitten, hamster, goldfish and whatnot are dying because they can’t afford the medicine after the Central Bank robbed their gold and monthly Hibah gift money. They are suggesting jealousy and cooking up tons of conspiracy theories as being the motive because Genneva was so successful that the company’s gold bullion could easily dwarf the Central Bank’s reserves (*woohoo*). In short, it’s everyone’s fault but theirs.
If the 14,000-plus Facebook Genneva Supporters Likes is any indicator, between 20% to 40% of Genneva gold traders (they don’t like to be called investors *tongue-in-cheek*) were painfully affected by the raid. This numbers can also means the high rollers or kings (of MLM and get-rich-scheme regulars) have long gone leaving these desperate leftovers running like headless chicken. While many greedy yet arrogant traders actually pawn everything including their undergarments and even took loans from financial institutions, a certain sector of illiterate yet ignorant rural folks bet their life savings on the scheme – all because of 1.8% to 2.5% monthly gift money.
You can also bet your money that a portion of these Facebook Genneva Supporters actually do not have the physical gold bullion in their possession – they left it with Genneva for safekeeping because renewal every 3-months required the gold bullion to be presented to Genneva – a successful trick by Genneva deliberately inconvenience the buyers. While the more fortunate buyers have at least their physical gold bullion as consolation prize, the “unfortunate” risk takers have only a piece of certificate of ownership as their trophy.
Latest update from the authorities revealed (from seized records) many investors who had paid had yet to receive any delivery of gold. The statement also said the total amount of gold seized during the raids from all the companies (Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd, Pageantry Gold Bhd, Caesar Gold Sdn Bhd and Worldwide Far East Bhd?) is approximately 142.7 kilogram, and monies in bank accounts and cash amounts to RM101.92 million – a puzzling figure considering Genneva alone is said to have monthly turnover of RM2 billion. So what happened to all the glittering gold bars and billions of ringgit allegedly robbed by Malaysian Central Bank?
At yesterday’s gold price of US$55.51 (RM169.39) per-gram or US$55,513.41 (RM169,359) per-kilogram of gold (the gold price has been trending down, mind you), there should be 11,809 kilograms of gold in Genneva’s vault, based on RM2 billion of turnover. Either there should be 11 tons of gold bars or RM2 billion in Genneva’s bank accounts (and cash). Now, let’s give the Gennevarians the benefits of doubt. Let’s assume there were indeed tons of gold bars and billions of cash prior to Central Bank’s raid. What can the Genneva buyers do to get back their hard-earned gold and money?
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(Please visit our gallery to see the other bars/ packaging and gold certs)
Customer Sell Price ( 916 ) :
Customer Sell Price( 999 ) :
Customer Buy Price :
100g PAMP SUISSE
50 g PAMP SUISSE
10g PAMP SUISSERM 1550.00
5g PAMP SUISSE
1kg PAMP SUISSERM 2820.00
CONTACT : email@example.com
US : 012-7656048We provide you with the best price in the market. We advise our clients to check the prevailing gold price( for 999 gold bars) in jewelery shops and compare with our price.The best way to invest in gold is to purchase 999 gold bar. Buying jewelery as investment is not advisable because of higher price (20%- 30%) and workmanship cost. Purity of jewelery gold is 916 (91.6%) compared to gold bar which is 999(99.9%).
Our gold bars is meant as an investment tool for investor to ride on the anticipated higher gold price in future.
16 May 2013 04:48pmKUALA LUMPUR: Genneva Malaysia was doing genuine gold trading and not illegal deposit taking, Sessions Court judge Rozali Yusof ruled today.
She acquitted three Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd directors and a former director who were charged with 224 counts of money-laundering and five counts of illegal deposit-taking involving more than RM141mil.
Star Online reported that Judge Rozana made the decision after the defence succeeded in establishing doubt in the case against Datuk Ng Poh Weng, Datuk Marcus Yee Yuen Seng, Datuk Chin Wai Leong and former director Liew Chee Wah.
She said the buy-back concept was a marketing strategy to assure the buyer that the gold bars were genuine.
“That was why Genneva was willing to buy back the gold,” she said when delivering her judgement.
Ng faced 93 charges of money-laundering, Yee and Chin faced 40 and 61 respectively and Liew faced 30 counts.
They were said to have committed the offences between July 2008 and June 2009 and were charged under Section 4 of the Anti-Money Laundering Act.
Ng, 63, Yee, 61, Chin, 37, and Liew, 59, were also each accused of accepting deposits from the public in their capacity as directors without a valid licence at Jalan Kuchai Lama here between November 2008 and July 2009.
The company was charged with accepting deposits from the public without a valid licence at the same time and place.
These charges were under the Banking and Financial Institutions Act.
Counsel Mohamed Haniff and K. Selva Kumaran acted for Ng, Yee and Chin and Keppy Wong for Liew.
The deputy public prosecutors from BNM were Alvin Ong and Mardziatun Nisa Ahamadul Kabir.
The prosecution has applied for a stay and the gold and money to be frozen pending appeal and the hearing of the stay has been fixed for Friday.
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions1. Everyone seems to be buying gold. Why should I buy gold?
- 10 Reasons To Buy Gold
- Gold is Not an Investment – Gold is Money – and Here’s Why
- Gold Investment Advice – Do Your Homework
- Why You Should Buy Physical Gold NOW!
- Videos: Why Gold & Silver? – Mike Maloney Tells All
- They don’t share profit with you; you only enjoy capital gains if the price of gold (quoted in the international market) appreciates.
- GENNEVA provides you with the safest and most convenient gold trading opportunities based on Syariah Principles.
- Yes. Details, read more here.
- No. GENNEVA is a gold trader, not an investment company and does not fall under the purview of Bank Negara Malaysia nor the Securities Commission Malaysia. Learn more here.
- Yes. GENNEVA gold bullion is 999.9 pure gold that can be verified via any independent certified assayer.
- Experienced and dynamic management team with more than 100 years of combined experience in gold trading, gold mining and marketing.
- Risk is inherent in any venture. However, each individual’s risk appetite differs from another. Kindly conduct your own due diligence.
- For accurate information, please contact our consultants.
- Anyone can buy – Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
- No. You have the choice to sell back and GENNEVA has the discretion to buy at a mutually agreed price.
- GENNEVA does not in any manner, directly or indirectly, at present or in future gives an undertaking or guarantee the repurchase of the gold products sold to its purchaser (no buy back guarantee).
- To date, there are more than 50,000 satisfied clients nationwide in Malaysia, not including the clients of our affiliate Partners in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and The Philippines.
- Yes. Genneva Malaysia Sdn Bhd is a company dealing in buying and selling of gold products.
- Upon delivery of the Gold Product, GENNEVA issues a Certificate of Ownership. The Certificate shall be the evidence of passing of ownership of the said Gold Product from the Seller to the Purchaser.
- Yes. Because it’ѕ 999.9 pure gold, yоu cаn sell anу time аnd аnуwhere in the world. There arе alwауѕ dealers іn аny decent sized metropolitan area, but similar to аnу insurance policy, you shouldn’t cash іn unlеsѕ уоu absolutely nеed it.
15. “It is simply too good to be true!”
- The named beneficiary will acquire the rights of the buyer.
Well, here’s what one of our Genneva Malaysia Consultants said, echoed by tens of thousands of satisfied customers:
That’s exactly what I thought three and half years ago — before I did intensive research to learn all about gold and GENNEVA Malaysia Sdn Bhd out of concern to ensure my relatives and friends are not scammed. Result, I not only bought GENNEVA Gold late-Frebruary 2011, I joined GENNEVA Malaysia as a consultant to introduce GENNEVA Gold.
Having browsed through numerous websites, blogs, discussion forums and having read hundreds of comments on the net on GENNEVA Gold; I’ve yet to find evidence claiming GENNEVA Gold is fake or anyone “scammed” or “cheated” by GENNEVA. Not even one report.
Instead, I found rumours, assumptions or predictions by naysayers, skeptics, Self-Appointed Prophets of Doom and Narrow-minded People Stuck in Old Economy Mindsets (i.e. old conservative ways of making money).
The old world is being creatively destroyed. Old wealth will lose its value if they are not reinvented in time. Already, the rising stars in the business world are building on knowledge, ideas, technology and global relationships. So there, decide for yourself now, where you want to put your savings.
“If you’re not brave, you will always be poor.”
Status of Cases Investigated