Table of Contents
|GSPartners, Gold Standard Bank, Swiss Valorem Bank
|15 Oct 2020, GSB Gold Standard Group
|Josip Heit, Alex Cocindau
GSPartners operates within the cryptocurrency niche and emerged as a spinoff from Karatbars International, spearheaded by Josip Heit. The company notably lacks comprehensive executive information on its website, leading to speculation surrounding its origins. GSPartners’ website72) and that of Swiss Valorem Bank were disabled on 16 December 2023 following a rug pull. This happened without prior warning or communication to GSPartners investors. GSPartners rebranded as GSPro73). As of 20th December 2023, GSPro has announced it is terminating all US GSPartners investor accounts.
The genesis of GSPartners is entwined with the turbulent history of Karatbars International. Notably, Josip Heit's association with the company stemmed from the aftermath of Karatbars’ KaratGold Coin (KGC) hype disaster in mid-2019. Harald Seiz, Karatbars CEO, had advertised a 100 KBC to 1 gram of gold exchange in the buildup to the July 4th event. However, this promise never materialized, resulting in a substantial 62% drop in KGC’s public value shortly after the launch event. Amid this marketing debacle, Harald Seiz's absence and Josip Heit's fronting of angry investors through recorded videos led to discontent among KGC investors, forcing Karatbars to disable comments on videos featuring Heit.
The subsequent phase witnessed regulatory warnings issued by various countries in response to Karatbars’ KGC debacle, prompting Seiz and Heit to maintain a low profile through 2019 and 2020. Amidst this uncertainty, the introduction of “Gold Standard” in 2020 and a subsequent token reboot, G999, emerged. However, by September, these plans faltered, leading Harald Seiz to promote Freebay and V999, a spinoff from the G999 token.
Heit’s split from Karatbars took place sometime between the announcements of Gold Standard and Freebay. This rift marked Heit's departure to establish GSPartners, wherein he retained the original G999 token.
Products: GSPartners operates without retail products or services for affiliates to market, focusing primarily on promoting GSPartners affiliate memberships. The primary perk of these memberships is access to the Blockchain Academy, a platform offering courses on blockchain, coinization, crypto assets, and digital currencies through video-based online sessions.
Compensation Plan: Despite the absence of a publicly available compensation plan on their website, GSPartners affiliates invest in G999 tokens with an expectation of returns. The investment occurs through GSPartner’s GSTrade exchange, wherein affiliates receive G999 tokens upon signing up. The entry involves fees for Brand Advantage Basic and Premium Packages, providing varying amounts of G999 tokens.
Affiliate Ranks and Commissions
GSPartners delineates ten affiliate ranks within their compensation plan, each associated with specific qualification criteria based on Group Volume (GV) generated by downline affiliates.
Referral commissions follow a unilevel compensation structure, capped at nine levels, with varying percentages paid out based on the level.
The company allocates portions of company-wide fee investment volume into pools like Blockstar Pool, Infinity Pool (based on rank), Community Pool, and Legacy Program, with varying distributions and qualifications.
Conclusion and Critique
GSPartners' lack of transparency regarding its compensation plan raises suspicions of a continuation of securities fraud that plagued Josip Heit’s previous venture. The value of G999 tokens appears contingent upon recruitment, echoing concerns of a volatile and speculative nature. The platform uses educational offerings from Blockchain Academy to mask potential securities fraud, promising returns and offering various investment schemes. These practices, coupled with the absence of disclosed information on their website, signal potential regulatory non-compliance and raise concerns of financial risks associated with participation.
This comprehensive insight aims to inform readers about the controversies surrounding GSPartners, cautioning against potential risks linked to their MLM scheme and G999 token investments. The platform's historical context and regulatory ambiguities prompt prudent consideration and emphasize potential financial risks for participants.
- Josip Heit
- Alex Cocindau
- Michael Dalcoe
- Nitsa Nakos
Shell Companies linked to GSPartners
- GSBank, incorporated in Mwali.
- GSB Gold Standard Banking Corporation AG74)
GSPartners and COVID-19 Vaccination Passport Discussion
In an attempt to boost credibility, GSPartners oddly entered the discourse on COVID-19 vaccination passports.
Despite being unrelated to COVID-19 digital passports, GSPartners released press statements trying to liken itself to major tech players like Google and Apple. This effort failed to establish legitimacy, as these companies are not involved in MLM crypto Ponzi schemes.
GSPartners presented its research department's aid for a digital vaccination passport, positioning itself as an alternative to the EU's ongoing discussions. However, the EU's prototype doesn't involve blockchain or cryptocurrency, unlike South Korea's vaccination app that utilizes blockchain.
The company's attempt to associate its G999 token with environmental compliance and secure data management through blockchain raised skepticism. Josip Heit's emphasis on blockchain for digital certificates bordered on the absurd, hinting at GSPartners' involvement in a national vaccine rollout, an implausible scenario.
Website traffic decline starting in late February signals potential trouble for GSPartners, common for Ponzi schemes without fresh investors. The scheme targets U.S. and African investors but operates from Hamburg, Germany, with no intervention from German authorities.
Dumping of 2 Billion G999 Tokens by GSPartners Corporate
Analysis of G999's blockchain suggests GSPartners dumped over 2 billion tokens. Data from a recent GitHub project called dataDamager 75) revealed these dumps from corporate wallets, occurring between January and April 2021.
G999's value surged to 2.39 cents on its initial listing but plummeted to $0.0039 by early March 2021. Josip Heit, GSPartners' operator, is believed to have profited significantly from these dumps, reportedly making around $5.9 million in March 2021.
BehindMLM's review of GSPartners coincided with a decline in website traffic around mid-March 2021. Majority of GSPartners' affiliates originate from the US (43%), followed by South Africa (13%) and India (9%). As of June 9th, 2021 GSPartners planned to launch a new cryptocurrency, JONE, following G999's poor performance.
Launch of JONE Token
In a classic move within MLM crypto schemes, GSPartners abandoned their failing G999 token to introduce JONE, a new cryptocurrency.
Promoted with a countdown on their website, JONE allegedly connects to Dubai's J One apartment tower project, although the connection remains unclear. GSPartners claims JONE tokenizes the property's floor space, presenting it as an investment opportunity. However, the actual association between the token and the building is dubious.
Similar to their previous token, G999, which flopped after initial pumps, GSPartners will allow affiliates to swap their worthless G999 tokens for JONE tokens. Expected to follow a familiar pattern of pump and dump, JONE will likely debut on unreliable exchanges, attracting new investors before plummeting in value. This move mirrors the scheme's pattern of launching tokens for quick gains, regardless of the underlying product's credibility.
As of June 18th, 2021, RKM Durar Properties, associated with the J One tower, has disclaimed any knowledge or affiliation with GSPartners and Josip Heit.
J One Developer Denies Ties with GSPartners & Heit
In the wake of GSPartners' JONE token launch linked to Dubai's J One tower, RKM Durar Properties, the tower's developers, have refuted any association with GSPartners or Josip Heit.Conversations from a MyBroadband forum revealed RKM Durar Properties' lack of awareness about Heit or their involvement with G999 or JONE tokens.They dismissed claims of an alliance with Gold Standard Bank (GSB) and labeled related promotions as unauthorized.This disavowal brings into question GSPartners' narrative and raises doubts about their choice of the J One tower for marketing purposes. Despite these contradictions, GSPartners' website persists in promoting the impending JONE token launch. As of June 26th, 2021 the MyBroadband forum thread discussing these disparities has been removed without explanation.
GSPartners and XLT/Lydian World Metaverse
In a bid to link tokens to real estate, GSPartners initially promoted JONE tokens tied to Dubai's J One Towers. When the tower's developer disavowed any association, GSPartners shifted to XLT tokens, claiming a tie with Movenpick Hotels and Apartments Dubai through Driven Properties.
The scheme involves XLT token price manipulation to prevent immediate devaluation. GSPartners also introduced Lydian Lions (LL) for a virtual world scheme, soliciting investments via cryptocurrencies but lacks proper securities registration.
GSPartners' attempt to distinguish affiliates with a $49 compliance fee raises questions amidst declining G999 investments. Accor Group issued a cease and desist76), addressing concerns related to Movenpick's involvement.
Recent developments reveal Accor Group's response, confirming GSPartners lacked authorization77) to use Movenpick's Dubai property for the XLT Ponzi scheme. The Investor Relations Team demanded the property developer to cease immediately. Research suggests Richreit Real Estate Development may be the property developer, as they have engaged Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts for managing a similar project in Dubai, aligning with GSPartners' marketing materials.
If Richreit received the cease and desist, it implies implications for GSPartners and their partner, Driven Properties. Despite Accor Group's confirmation, GSPartners has not publicly addressed this issue or made statements regarding the XLT token since the event.
This situation mirrors the prior failed attempt with JONE tokens tied to J ONE Towers, which collapsed when the tower's developers disavowed any links to GSPartners and Heit.
While GSPartners' website does not mention XLT or Mövenpick’s apartments, the Dubai marketing videos announcing the partnership remain accessible, indicating uncertainties regarding GSPartners’ alleged partnerships and token-based real estate investments.
After Accor Group's disapproval of GSPartners using the Movenpick brand, GSPartners attempted to proceed via JJJ Holdings78), a company linked to Josip Heit. They rebranded the deal as 'G999 Exclusive Living' but maintained involvement with SAAS Properties and Driven Properties. JJJ Holdings' recent setup, reflected in its new domain and redirection to GSB Gold Standard Corporation's site, suggests an attempt to obscure GSPartners' role after Accor Group's warning. The situation prompts questions about potential actions by Accor Group and regulatory bodies, particularly in the context of maneuvering to bypass authorized branding, potentially raising legal concerns in locations known for MLM activity like Dubai.“
SLAPP Lawsuit Against South African YouTube Channels
GSPartners, experiencing a significant drop in new victims signing up, filed a lawsuit79) against a South African YouTube channel, alleging defamation and loss of income80). Plaintiffs include GSPartners, owner Josip Heit, and several promoters.
Defendants named in the lawsuit, associated with the “G-Crypt” channel, are accused of making defamatory statements in seven videos, impacting GSPartners’ membership and earnings. GSPartners claims a 66% reduction in new monthly memberships since the videos were published.
GSPartners sought damages and injunctions against the allegedly offending videos and demanded public apologies. Notably, claimed incomes of promoters dropped after the decline in memberships, with Josip Heit seeking millions in damages.
However, the statements criticized by GSPartners reflect factual accuracy, revealing its Ponzi scheme nature, despite the lawsuit's allegations.
Furthermore, GSPartners’ Ponzi scheme history, involving Karatbars International and its transition to G999 tokens, depicts a repeated cycle of launching speculative tokens to attract investments.
Despite lacking regulatory registration in relevant jurisdictions, GSPartners targeted countries like South Africa, resulting in a decline in website traffic despite the lawsuit’s timing.
The legal battle continues at the time of writing. A second lawsuit was filed by GSPartners against another YouTube channel #ChrisTrade, owned by Christopher Wayne McDaniel.
US Government allegations of fraud
- Texas described GSPartners as “various fraudulent investment schemes that are threatening immediate and irreparable harm” issued by the Texas State Securities Board (TSSB). 81)
- Washington's Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) described GSPartners’ MLM business as “fraudulent activity” 82)
- Alabama claims GSPartners was “evading Alabama laws and making guarantees that are unrealistic”83)
- California described GSPartners as a “fraudulent crypto investment scheme”84)
- Kentucky asserted GSPartners “acted as an unregistered issuer of unregistered securities through its publicly available websites”85)
- Wisconsin described GSPartners as a “global fraud scheme”86)
- Arkansas claimed GSPartners is “perpetrating numerous fraudulent investment schemes that are threatening immediate and irreparable harm to investors”87)
- New Hampshire accused GSPartners of “fraud and deception”88)
- Arizona determined GSPartners’ threat to “public welfare requires immediate action”89)
- Florida’s undercover investigation into GSPartners revealed “unlawful activities“90)
- Mississippi described GSPartners’ Ponzi scheme as the “offering and selling fraudulent (of) certificates tied to digital assets”91)
Canadian Regulatory Warnings
- Quebec's AMF issued 52 GSPartners website securities fraud warnings on March 9th , 202094)
- British Columbia issued a GSPartners & Swiss Valorem Bank securities fraud warning on May 30th 2023 96)
- Saskatchewan issued a GSPartners securities fraud warning on June 1st 2023 97)
- Ontario issued a GSPartners and Swiss Valorem Bank securities fraud warning on July 25th 2023 98)
International Regulatory Warnings
- Australia issued a GSPartners securities fraud warning on November 15th 2023 99)
GSPartners' Attempt to Block BehindMLM in Ukraine
GSPartners sought legal action in Ukraine to silence BehindMLM's reports on their Ponzi scheme103). The court supposedly issued an order to block the site, citing defamation claims by GSPartners.
The court order coincided with BehindMLM's articles on GSPartners, suggesting potential external influence. Despite the alleged blockade, BehindMLM remains accessible in Ukraine.
This unexpected move to Ukraine raises questions about potential connections between GSPartners, Josip Heit, and Ukrainian entities, hinting at hidden motives or ties.
The order's duration depends on ongoing legal grounds, indicating a possible link to GSPartners' future or regulatory actions.
BehindMLM informed the SEC about these events due to GSPartners' significant US investor base.
Suspicious elements in the court document, like the inclusion of a Ramsar URL, raise doubts about potential tampering.
Despite the alleged block, BehindMLM's accessibility in Ukraine persists, highlighting potential gaps in the legal action.
The situation remains uncertain, inviting speculation about hidden motives behind GSPartners’ Ukraine strategy.
GSB Gold Standard Bank's Fake Mwali Banking License
Central to GSPartners’ G999 Ponzi scheme is GSB Gold Standard Bank, touted as holding a banking license in Mwali, a small island off Africa's eastern coast. This license claim is pivotal in legitimizing the scheme but stands on shaky ground.
GSPartners asserts that GSB Gold Standard Bank obtained an A Class Banking License (license No. B2020020) from The Mwali International Services Authority (MISA). This license supposedly authorizes operations related to the G999 blockchain and other services, but doubts about its authenticity emerge from discrepancies104).
MISA, where GSB Gold Standard Bank allegedly holds a license, operates through Moheli Corporate Service Ltd, offering services for shell company incorporation, including “international banking licenses.” However, the Central Bank of Comoros has refuted GSB Gold Standard Bank's existence in its registry and denied issuing any such license.
Further investigation revealed the MISA Register of Companies as a non-existent entity within the Union of the Comoros. Moheli Corporate Service's claim to offer Mwali banking licenses conflicts with the Central Bank's assertion of non-approval for banking activities or license issuance.
Attempts to clarify this led to revelations from the Central Bank of Comoros, discrediting GSB Gold Standard Bank's claimed license, MISA's legitimacy, and Moheli Corporate Service's role in issuing non-existent licenses.
Celebrities Endorsing GSPartners
Floyd Mayweather endorses GSPartners
The Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) issued an Emergency Cease and Desist Order on 16 November 2023 against the company, citing that… “Their schemes are being driven by a global confederation of commissioned multilevel marketers, and GSB Group has been using athletes such as boxer Floyd Mayweather and footballer Roberto Carlos to promote its brand.”105). Other notable sports celebrities mentioned in the order are footballers Roberto Carlos, Mario Yepes, David Trezeguet, Michel Salgado, and Lucas Radebe.
Sophia Thomalla promotes G999 and GSPartners
Forbes Riley's Involvement with GSPartners
Forbes Riley107), an acclaimed TV host and health expert, became a Brand Ambassador for GSPartners without openly disclosing compensation. Despite her influential position, Riley's promotion of G999, associated with a suspected Ponzi scheme, raises ethical concerns. Her active recruitment and endorsement of the investment scheme lack Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registration, sparking legal uncertainties.
South African Sports Stars Endorse GSPartners
GSPartners white-labelled debit card
The merchant providing GSPartners with debit card financial services had severed ties with GSPartners in September 2022110). Club Swan and Nvayo Limited put out a notice to say it will no longer be providing financial or other services to GS Partners and GSB and affiliated entities.
PMA Media Group, Aurae Lifestyle, Nvayo Limited, Club Swan and AU Card LLC are all owned by Christopher James Scanlon. Scanlon was arrested111) by US authorities at Miami International Airport on Thursday, 25 May 2023.
On 8 August 2023 the FCA introduced regulatory restrictions on Nvayo Limited, alleging that it operated as an unlicensed private bank for its customers and had operations in the United States and other foreign jurisdictions.114).
Known MLM clients of Scanlon’s unlicensed private bank include BitClub Network, GSPartners, PLC Ultima and My Daily Choice (dba Akashx).
BDSwiss Denies Partnership with GSPartners' Metaverse Certificates Scheme
In January 2023, BDSwiss, a prominent trading platform, refuted any association with GSPartners and its “metaverse certificates” Ponzi scheme, distancing itself from the alleged partnership.115) Initially presented as a collaboration to facilitate GSPartners' promised returns of up to 480% annually, BDSwiss denied any involvement after approximately eight months.
Despite previous endorsements, BDSwiss categorically stated, “We can confirm that there is no partnership between BDSwiss and GS Partners.” The denial prompted a legal investigation by BDSwiss, raising questions about the legitimacy of GSPartners' scheme and potential legal repercussions.
This incident echoes GSPartners' history of fabricating corporate partnerships, as seen in a prior Ponzi scheme involving JONE tokens and a false claim of a partnership with Accor Group.
With BDSwiss out of the picture, GSPartners' metaverse certificates scheme faces challenges, impacting the credibility of the external revenue aspect. The collapse of previous ventures, including LYS tokens and G999, adds to doubts surrounding GSPartners' credibility.
As the legal investigation unfolds, the aftermath of BDSwiss' denial poses uncertainties for GSPartners' future ventures and raises concerns within the cryptocurrency and investment communities.
On 24 January 2023, BDSwiss posted an update to its website titled “Updates on BDSwiss Collaborators”.116). In this post, the company makes it very clear that they never had a partnership with GSPartners or any of its associated companies.
Dear valued clients and friends,
It has come to our attention that for quite some time now, GSPartners Team, Lydian.world, Gold Standard Bank, and/or their associates have been on a publishing expedition of content explicitly featuring our brand and registered trademarks, suggesting an affiliation and/or cooperation with us.
We hereby wish to set the record straight by informing you that we have never started any kind of cooperation or affiliation with GSPartners Team, Lydian.world or Gold Standard Bank. If you ever come across such content, please be informed that we have not approved it and are not associated with GSPartners Team, Lydian.world, Gold Standard Bank, or any of their representatives.
We urge everyone seeking our products and services to ensure they are contacting us only through our official communication channels available on our website: www.bdswiss.com