Alireza, who has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering but was previously unemployed, told Al-Monitor, “I have been active in this field for about a year and I truly enjoy it. Aside from making good money, we are helping the country’s economy. Traditional marketing and sales methods are not working anymore. By using this method, we can introduce and sell products faster and better. This way, everybody wins since the buyer gets a discount and the seller can sell more products.”
In this vein, Shahbazi also explained the popularity of these firms among young Iranians, “Our company is one of the largest of its kind in Iran. We have about 2,000 employees in our central office, and we also have a lot of people working for us in our provincial offices. Based on the standard plan introduced by the company’s board, from the moment of entry to the time of departure from the company, which is generally known as ‘retirement,’ each employee’s income will reach $54,000 per month. This exponential income generation continues even after an employee ‘retires,’ through the activities of lower tier recruits, who continue to support income.”
Al-Monitor could not verify whether those figures are accurate; however, such earnings are all but unattainable for network marketers in the United States. But in a society where, based on Ministry of Labor directives, a common laborer earns $230 per month, the thought of earning sums such as the above is beyond tantalizing.
Yet in spite of the apparent increase in the Iranian public’s interest in network marketing, bitter memories of pyramid schemes still loom fresh in people’s minds. Thus, despite the mind-blowing money said to be at stake, most Iranians prefer not to risk their assets and rather choose to forget about the tales of magical sums of money to be made.
(Picture credit: Mehrad Watson)