Herbalife MLM Business: Information & Opportunity
Herbalife Business & Product Overview
Herbalife is a network marketing company that specializes in weight loss and other nutritional products, as well as a personal care product line for the face, skin, body, and hair.
Herbalife started with one young man and a dream. In 1980, at age 24, Mark R. Hughes founded Herbalife International and began selling Herbalife products from the trunk of his car. From those small beginnings, Herbalife grew into a multinational corporation that was operating in approximately 60 countries at the time of Hughes’ death in 2000.
Herbalife has gone through several changes since Hughes’ passing. The company has been taken public twice, and currently there are reports in the business world that Herbalife might be going private again.
The company’s products are formulated and researched in conjunction with a Nutrition Advisory Board consisting of top-level scientists in the fields of health and nutrition.
Despite some controversies surrounding the safety of Herbalife products, the company continues to grow and today operates in more than 73 countries with a distributor force of almost 2 million.
It’s important to note that Herbalife’s product line has been clinically proven safe and effective and that the bulk of the controversy surrounding the company was the result of the efforts of one man who hoped to profit by tarnishing Herbalife’s public image and stock price.
The company’s headquarters are located in Torrance, California.
The Vision, Mission, and Goals at Herbalife International
While Herbalife doesn’t have a specific mission or vision statement on its website, the company does have an easy-to-find section dedicated to its commitment to social responsibility. The company lists specific achievements it’s earned in corporate governance, business ethics, and environmental sustainability, as well as its efforts to keep health insurance rates low and that it provides complementary products to its employees.
In addition, through the Herbalife Family Foundation and Casa Herbalife program, the company provides funding for nutrition to charitable organizations that take care of at-risk children around the world. The Herbalife Family Foundation is also active in relief work during natural disasters and has taken a strong role in today’s Haiti relief efforts.
Today, there are more than 40 active Casa Herbalife programs on five continents.
Herbalife International Company Management
Herbalife is currently being run by an Executive Team headed up by Michael O. Johnson as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. The company credits Johnson for the five years of double-digit sales growth it achieved from 2002-2008, as well as his successful efforts to build the Herbalife brand through athletic sponsorships around the world.
Before he joined Herbalife in 2003, Johnson was at the Walt Disney Company for seventeen years. He is an active athlete who has been a triathlon participant for more than twenty years.
Herbalife is notable for its Scientific Advisory Board, also known as the Nutrition Advisory Board or NAB. The Board is headed by Dr. David Heber, M.D., PhD., F.A.C.P, F.A.C.N. and Dr. Louis Ignarro, Ph.D, a 1998 Nobel laureate for his for his discovery of nitric oxide and its range of benefits to the human body. Dr. Ignarro worked with Herbalife to develop Niteworks, a dietary supplement designed to boost the body’s use of nitric oxide, before becoming a member of the company’s NAB.
Herbalife Products and Services
The Quick Start Program consists of the Formula 1 Nutritional Shake Mix, Formula 2 Multivitamin Complex, Formula 3 Cell Activator, and Herbal Tea Concentrate.
The Advanced Program adds a product called Total Control to boost the metabolism and Cell-U-Loss, “for the appearance of healthy skin and the healthy elimination of water.”
Finally, the Ultimate Program adds Snack Defense, Aminogen, and Thermo Bond to the products that come with the Advanced Program. All of the products are designed to support specific aspects of an overall healthy weight loss program, from keeping blood sugar levels even to helping users feel full so they don’t rush to the snack counter.
However, Herbalife doesn’t stop with its weight loss programs. The company also offers a full line of nutritional supplements for women, children, and people who are aging, as well as supplements formulated to target specific health issues like digestive health and energy and fitness.
In addition, the company has created a line of personal care products ranging from topical products for skin and hair to fragrances.
The wide range of available products allows Herbalife distributors to specialize in areas from weight loss and fitness to overall health and wellness goals.
Herbalife Compensation Plan
Herbalife’s compensation plan is one of the most generous in the business. Distributors who become Supervisors can earn up to 73% in commissions, and they earn those commissions on up to three levels of downline members.
Obviously, the best way to earn money with Herbalife as with any other network marketing company is through commissions earned from downline members’ sales. However, given that Herbalife sells products with a high probability of repeat sales – nutrition and personal care products – distributors have the potential to build a sizable income in repeat retail and wholesale sales over time.
According to the company, in 2007, Herbalife Supervisors earned $2.4 billion in commissions, discounts, royalties, and bonuses.
Herbalife has been the subject of controversy on a few occasions. In the 1980s, the company settled a suit brought by California’s Attorney General, which claimed that Herbalife was making inflated claims about its products. Other suits have alleged that Herbalife was actually a pyramid scheme and blamed the company for the potentially illegal marketing tactics of some of its distributors.
The two most famous claims against Herbalife have both been proven false, with one of them made specifically with the intent to profit by driving down the selling price of the company’s stock. Former felon Barry Minkow publicly accused the company of putting lead in its products as part of a scheme to profit by selling the company’s stocks short. Minkow had formerly served seven years in federal prison for stock fraud. When the scheme was discovered, Minkow retracted his accusations and removed any mention of Herbalife from his company’s website. A concern of the Israeli government that Herbalife products were toxic to the human liver was allayed when the government had Herbalife products tested by three separate labs.
Today, Herbalife has a rating of A- from the Better Business Bureau; the company has been a BBB-accredited company since 1990. In addition, Herbalife is a member of the Direct Selling Association and has pledged to abide by the DSA’s Code of Ethics.
Herbalife is a solid company with a proven track record of providing healthy, effective weight loss and nutritional products. The company’s product line has a fairly universal appeal as well as a high potential for repeat sales.
However, the Herbalife opportunity is not for everyone. People who are looking to get in on the ground floor with a new product line will not want to consider the Herbalife business opportunity. In addition, the huge number of existing Herbalife distributors and Supervisors means that new distributors will need to use increasingly creative marketing strategies and rely heavily on Internet marketing tools to succeed with the business.
People who are willing to face these challenges and meet them, though, have a good chance at succeeding with an Herbalife business.