419 scams now target business investors seeking funds


We could have been burned by a 419 scam.

To all of you unfamiliar with this term, “419” refers to the article of the Nigerian Criminal Code (part of Chapter 38: “Obtaining Property by false pretences; Cheating”) dealing with fraud these Internet scammers are prosecuted under.

You’ve all seen it: The Nigerian who will share his windfall sum of money with you and needs your help in getting access to it if you only loan him a few thousand first. We really didn’t think their tentacles would extend into the arena of business investing, but it has. They prey on the enthusiasm of fund seekers who think they have finally found someone to finance their business idea.

Here’s our story (from my close, yet outside, perspective):

My husband’s (well, theoretically it’s mine, too) company is looking for its next round of investment funding. We’ve had quite a bit of success locating potential investors and brokers by posting our funding request online at a service called GoBigNetwork.com. It’s keen to be green nowadays, and because our project is enviroment-friendly, we’re seeing the kind of popularity once afforded to business builders of the Internet.

Initially, we gave an upfront finder’s fee to a few brokers. Bad move. Those who we paid in advance have performed far less then stellar. Mind you, it would have been useful if we had done more due diligence. Lesson well learned.

One of the responses we received to our funding request was particularly intriguing. It came from a “Majid al Futtaim” who sent a direct email to Clovice saying he was interested in our project and would like to invest. We did a bit of homework and discovered “Majid al Futtaim” was on the Forbes “Top 500” list for richest people in the world. Wow! We knew our little project could fit in pretty well with his investment portfolio! And, if I were a rich person, I’d want some level of anonymity in seeking investments from networks like gobignetwork.com

We sent an executive summary, and a few weeks later al Futtaim notified us his team had investigated our summary and had decided to fund us, though he wanted our assurance this decision would be kept secret from his family. This seemed plausible, as the al Futtaim group is only just now exploring investments outside of the UAE. We also though the usual due diligence was not sought by him, because the amount we were asking amounted to a pittance for him.

We were connected by al Futtaim to a Kenneth Bryan via a Yahoo email account (red flag number 1) and a mobile UK telephone number (red flag number 2), who would serve as the agent coordinating the fund transfer. We made contact with Bryan and he again reiterated the terms al Futtaim had described, plus added we would need to go to London to sign the paperwork and complete the deal (red flag number 3). A few emails went back and forth sketching out the deal prior to receiving the draft funding agreement.

We were happy to go along with this for the time being – after all, it wasn’t costing us anything up to this point. We had done some initial due diligence, and weren’t overly alarmed we couldn’t find much about Bryan. Plus, what we had discovered about al Futtaim was encouraging.

When we received the first version of the funding agreement, doubts which were swirling around under the radar of our conscious minds suddenly rose quickly and prominently to the surface.

Gosh, you’d expect these scammers would at least enlist the help of an English-speaking paralegal to write their material! The wording was elementary and the agreement riddled with legal loopholes. They couldn’t even be bothered to rename the file they had obviously downloaded from one of those “Do-Your-Own Legal Work” websites. Plus, they were asking for 20,000 UK pounds in advance that they said would be reimbursed after funding.

When we wrote al Futtaim asking him to verify his identity, he wrote back an angry and scathing email threating to revoke his offer for funding (another classic 419 scam tactic).

The trick with uncovering these people involved saving al Futtaim’s emails in a text format (which saves all the routing information). This uncovered emails sent from the majaidalfuttaim.com domain were actually faked to come from the UK. Additionally, by placing “419” in front of Kenneth Bryan’s name, Google revealed other scams this name had previously been involved in. We did further research on 419 scams to realize all of our red flags were common elements of this type of fraud.

My husband enjoyed himself this morning sending the following email:

Date: July 1, 2008 3:14:35 PM PDT
To: Majid Futtaim <majidlfuttaim@gawab.com>, Ken Bryan <ken.bryan88@yahoo.com>
Subject:Will Send Transfer Charges for Funding – See You in London!

Majid and Kenneth,

My favorite movie of all time is the “Wizard of Oz”. In one of the final scenes, when Dorothy appears before the Wizard after liquidating the Wicked Witch, her little dog Toto starts barking at something. The dog is calling everyone’s attention to an old man with a microphone hidden behind a curtain. The Great and Terrible Oz tells his visitors to disregard “the man behind the curtain.” But Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Man realize that the great fiery image with the thundering voice is a false front. The great wizard is merely an old man with a microphone.

You might find this clip as entertaining as I have your last few emails to us…

“I enjoyed doing business with men of great confidence and courage. You have every reason to be cautious but not when you Will personally confirmed the availability of the investment in London before the final bank deposit. What exactly is the prove you want? Are you trying to call me an impersonator because you have been requested to contribute to something that will better your life and business?”

“However, for security of your personal information and satisfaction of your curiosity on the legitimacy of the process, I shall advise you make an arrangement to meet with the processing security/financial brokerage firm in London to enable you access as well as analyze the transactional modalities in person.”

LOL, these emails are really funny!

I can’t wish you “good luck” in your endeavors. However, I terminate your sad charade with a video you may recognize yourself in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWyCCJ6B2WE

So long, Humbug!

Our moods were only a little dampened by this experience. Our investor dance card is pretty full, and we gave these criminals nothing. The irony is our investment opportunity is one the real Majid al Futtaim Group would be interested in….

The moral of this story:

If you are searching for funding, be very wary of using services like gobignetwork.com. Many of the investors on this network are reputable, though they presently do not have any rating or referral system like Amazon does for books or LinkedIn does for profiles. If they did have such a system, then you could at least have some level of initial confidence in an investor’s trustworthiness and ability to perform.

Let the fund seeker beware!

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28 Responses to “419 scams now target business investors seeking funds”


  1. 1 Allen Taylor July 2, 2008 at 2:34 am

    Nice writing. You are on my RSS reader now so I can read more from you down the road.

    Allen Taylor

  2. 2 Carol August 29, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    Your contact is probably a 419 scam if the phone number he gave you to reach him is a UK cell phone with the prefix +44 70XX.

    Find out more here: http://au.answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20071214153859AAlL7uv

  3. 3 Producer November 9, 2008 at 5:56 am

    We are dealing with pretty much the same thing right now. We posted our funding request on goforfunding.com and received emails from two different people one claiming to be a sheikh in Dubai, the other one a waelthy engeneer. We found loads of information on the internet about both of them, they reviewed our business plan and then agreed to fully fund our film. Without them performing DD on their side, without any information request about our company.
    We have been dealing with “financial advisors” in the UK (again with a +4470 area code) and they were asking us for a surety bond of $25,000 in an offshore account in the UK. They promised a cash wire of $2,5 million, but demanded for the surety bond to be in place beforehand. And for us to travel to the UK in order to close the deal.
    It really struck me when two people from supposedly two different countries came up with exactly the same scheme.

  4. 4 Kelly Diebold November 20, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    I have been contact by a representative from the

    Personal (Business) Advisors, LLC and would like to know if this company is for real or if I’m being scammed into some type of investment scheme? Any information you could give me would be most appreciated before I fall into a monetary trap costing me a lot of money and time. Thank you very much.

    Personal (Business) Advisors, LLC
    Direct line: 440-255-4185
    E-mail: mailto:
    http://www.linkedin.com/pub/greg-lyons/6/2bb/a35

    Websites/ Press Releases:
    http://www.PersonalBusinessAdvisors.com
    http://www.prweb.com/releases/2009/04/prweb2350934.htm

    • 5 Carol November 22, 2009 at 11:57 pm

      Hi, Kelly-

      Some other ideas for protecting yourself

      1) Google your potential investors (of course)
      2) Contact by phone companies who have received funding from your potential investor (information you got from your potential investor or from the Internet). Record your conversation. Ask them how long it took to get funded, were there any upfront fees, what the working relationship was like.
      3) The more people you can talk to the better.
      4) If you’re really serious, pay for a public record search on the principals.
      5) Some up-front fees may be warranted, but we have a company policy not to pay these. Having said that, we have had to look hard at this position, especially after this up-front work actually suggested the investor group might be able to do something for us.

      You can never really know in the end if someone is “legit”. Actually, you’re more likely to find someone who may be “legit”, but very inexperienced (and thereby ineffective). These few things you can do up front help improve your changes.

      Good luck!

    • 6 David M. March 19, 2010 at 12:11 am

      Hi Kelly,
      Did you find out anything additional about Personal (Business) Advisors LLC? I too was recently contacted by them. While they sound legit, it’s like peeling an onion to discover if what they really offer is a sound business opportunity. Please do let me know what you have found out.
      Thanks,
      David

    • 7 Nigel Donovan April 16, 2010 at 2:26 am

      Carol, did you ever find out anything about Personal Business Advisors, LLC – good or bad?

      thx

    • 8 Former PBA business owner November 30, 2012 at 6:53 pm

      You would be best served to stay clear of PBA. If you research them you will see that virtually 100% of the people who made the mistake of buying into their pitch, left the opportunity after less than a year in most cases. What they sell is blue sky, smoke and mirrors. Their system doesn’t work and they are very “untruthful” in their claims of success.

      • 9 temple.vp October 3, 2013 at 2:56 am

        I agree! Uwe Brettmann, Chairman & CEO of Personal Business Advisors ®, LLC, Is a Scam Artist. He obviously tried to make himself look better with reputation management to try to clean up his online appearance. He got most of the REALLY bad press off but he cant eliminate it all. According to ComplaintsBoard dot com, he paid a fee to have his major complaint from being seen. STAY AS FAR AWAY FROM Uwe Brettmann as possible. He is a con artist at the highest level!

    • 10 temple.vp October 3, 2013 at 3:23 am

      Here are some additional links – The first two now go to pages reporting: “There are no complaints using term personal business advisors llc ” But there use to be a Giant complaint there. In fact I have several more specific URLs that now go to that comment:

      http://www.complaintsboard.com/?search=uwe%20brettmann
      http://www.complaintsboard.com/?search=personal+business+advisors+llc&sort=natural(another

      Here is one from:

      STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA

      http://investorshub.advfn.com/boards/read_msg.aspx?message_id=32211462

      COUNTY OF BUNCOMBE
      IN THE GENERAL COURT OF JUSTICE
      SUPERIOR COURT DIVISION
      07-CVS-6038
      FREDERICK W. WICKS,
      Plaintiff,

      v.

      FRANK A. MOODY, II and SCENIC MARKETING GROUP, LLC,

      Defendants,
      v.

      HOMELAND INTEGRATED SECURITY SYSTEMS, INC., JAMES T. BULLOCK, PERSONAL BUSINESS ADVISORS, LLC, and UWE BRETTMAN, (Third-party Defendants.)

      http://usaconsumercomplaints.com/business-finance/250086-scam.html
      Summary:
      PERSONAL BUSINESS ADVISORS
      PERSONAL BUSINESS ADVISORS – SCAM
      Buyer Beware:

      “Personal Business Advisors (PBA) is a well crafted scam to take your money….Once again, it is the lure of making great income that dupes people…”
      “They claim that they (PBA) themselves are not making any money from you. They claim that they are ”primarily compensated through successful matches resulting in transactions, our focus and interests lie with you”

      http://www.ncbusinesscourt.net/TCDDotNetPublic/default.aspx?CID=3&caseNumber=07CVS06038
      Summary:
      Trial Court Desktop.net
      North Carolina Business Court
      TOO MANY LAWSUITS TO LIST

      http://dockets.justia.com/search?query=Media+Com&court=wawdce&page=2
      Summary:
      Moura v. Personal Business Advisors LLC et al
      Filed: June 25, 2008 as 3:2008cv05403
      Plaintiff: Rui Moura
      Defendants: Personal Business Advisors LLC, First Media Club GmbH, Uwe Brettmann, Axel Zacharias and Judith Grote
      Cause Of Action: Diversity
      Court: Ninth Circuit > Washington > Western District Court
      Type: Contract > Other Contract

      http://dockets.justia.com/docket/washington/wawdce/3:2008cv05403/152772/
      Summary:
      Rui Moura
      Defendants: Personal Business Advisors LLC, First Media Club GmbH, Uwe Brettmann, Axel Zacharias and Judith Grote

      http://dockets.justia.com/docket/washington/wawdce/3:2008cv05403/152772/
      Summary:
      More Negligence

      I would List More of the Personal Business Advisors’ SCAMs but I think this is enough to chew on!

      Beware of Uwe Brettmann!

      • 11 Jeff November 20, 2015 at 9:42 am

        Interesting that you cite these, but don’t seem to state most of them are either unavailable, or are dismissed. Most are almost 10 years old, anyway. There are ‘too many to list’? Where?
        Perhaps it would be best to deal with facts here.
        PBA is a legitimate business, matching people with legitimate businesses, and has been doing this for years. Do your OWN research, and don’t believe what you read on the Internet. Or if you are that naive, perhaps you should not even consider this business. It is real – not magic – and does require work (not just google searches).
        Jeff Woodard

    • 12 Sue Culp April 15, 2014 at 3:52 pm

      I have worked with Personal Business Advisors. They are a legitimate company, highly ethical and never charge a fee for their services. I know there’s lots of “opinions” out there but most are not based on facts. This company’s website is an accurate representation of their work and mission.

      • 13 Temple VP April 17, 2014 at 1:24 am

        Sue, this is just another attempt by Uwe Brettmann of Personal Business Advisors, LLC (PBA) to try and hide the truth. The business ethics of Uwe Brettmann are well known by most of the people that have worked with Uwe. He seems sincere but the bottom line is his own pocketbook.

        And how about you, Sue Ann Culp – Senior Advisor at Professional Business Advisors, LLC. It is true, Personal Business Advisors is a legitimate company – but, highly ethical? Are you following in the same path as Uwe? Did he convince you to respond to this?

        There is lots of bad press out there on PBA. Many of the negatives are lawsuits which cannot be disputed. Here is anther one:

        http://wa.findacase.com/research/wfrmDocViewer.aspx/xq/fac.20080902_0001573.WWA.htm/qx

  5. 14 Carol April 20, 2010 at 2:05 am

    Nigel – I think if you look at the first reply to this post Kelly may be able to answer your question…

    All the Best,

    Carol

  6. 15 Denise Tessier May 26, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    Ditto- Looking for information about Personal (Business) Advisors< LLC. It sounds legit, but we'll see… TX BBB lists them as A+ rated, but I can find very little on them online. Their website is down, and the principles don't have more than 15 contacts on Linked In, which I would think would be a huge marketing tool for them. No cost so far so I am proceeding cautiously.

  7. 16 mike m July 22, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    I would be interested in knowing how everyone’s experiences went with PBA? Much appreciated.

  8. 17 John August 24, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    We are like the couple at the top of this page,we got caught for 2,500 euro for a DD.We were promised the 3.5 million euro we still need to set up our business.A very profitable business too.We still are looking for an Investor or a partner,if anyone on here knows of anyone we could contact.

    It would be a great help.

    Look at our website and you will have a better idea of what we want to do.

    John

    • 18 Don J Williams Jr September 7, 2011 at 4:34 pm

      I feel that all of us entrepreneurs and business owners who are looking for funding should get together and have our own fund. If we put money into a fund we would be able to dip into it. It seems that a lot of people lose their cash and waste time but if the money was put into a huge fund given by other entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs that will end this scam business and truly help those of us in need.

      just a suggestion

      I actually have a plan to do this if I could get enough people involved if anyone is interested in learning about it let me know.

  9. 19 rajini September 14, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    Hi
    I am having the similar experience from an investor or engineer al Nasser, he is supposed to be in Iraq, but funds through UK. His representative is in UK, He is a Dr, L. Moise. They hook me up with an agency called finance consultancy services who require a 10000GB fee to fund $10 mill project. I would like to know the legitamacy of this company. How can I find out that these people are genuine. I really need this funding for my project, but it is a lot of money.

  10. 20 Norman Vincent November 20, 2010 at 4:10 pm

    Denise and other inquisitors,

    The Good: PBA is for real as far as they have a very non intrusive, stress free process whereby they guide a candidate at NO COST through an intro call and interview (45 mins total, typically) process. They find out many things as an aid to then present opportunities of potential interest for your consideration; all are entrepreneurial and will involve some level of investment. The opportunities are also real, usually licensing and franchise opportunities. They have partnership openings with start up companies as well. That’s the good.

    The Bad: they almost always present PBA as an opportunity that makes sense for you as well. Thus many feel as if that is the real goal. It would be okay except that that’s where the ugly comes in.

    The Ugly: If you google “Personal Business Advisors LLC Complaints” you will find that the company makes many unsubstantiated claims. They claim to be a $200 million company in regards to profits, thus at a typical 50% margin, that makes them at least $400 million company by their own claim. This is pointed out by a blogger who references a significant email announcement of a corporate initiative dated August 4th 2010, which contains this claim. One need only request the email from a PBA licensee (known as Senior Advisors or Executive Senior Advisors) to see that this is indeed the case. They never provide ANY information to back this up. If I were the CEO, I would be incredibly proud of this fact and display it for all of the world to see, especially my licensees so they know I and my company are for real. Other bloggers reference how out of sync PBA is with other franchise consultant opportunities in regards to the splits. PBA’s typical 50% margins appear to be very high compared to the competition. One blogger also states that the level of support for licensees is woefully inadequate as well compared to the competition. Others comment on the serious lack of results that most licensees are experiencing. Apparently most of the licensees give up and quit or put the business on the back burner within 4 to 12 months due to this fact. The company claims 3 deals per set of 400 leads at a cost of $400 to realize $5K typical per deal, which amounts to $15K per month for working one set of leads per month. Obviously that is NOT happening. The amazing thing is that until late this year one could hardly find any negative press on PBA. Those who have given up have chosen to go away quietly and take the financial hit on the chin. But of late, many are choosing to make it known that they don’t appreciate giving up $15K, $30K or $55K of their hard earned dollars for such a minimal ROI. I myself went though the process and was impressed with it, but decided NOT to invest. In the interim, I obtained a traditional corporate C-Level position, one for which I am thankful and feel blessed to have gotten when one considers the employment landscape we are trying to dig out of at present time.

    • 21 Garth True January 17, 2011 at 2:54 pm

      Norman,

      I just had a third interview with PBA and decided to stop the process. Two minutes later I read your comments. I agree with everything you said.

  11. 22 Norman Vincent January 26, 2011 at 4:09 am

    You are welcome Garth True….by the way, I am posting below the FAMOUS EMAIL of 08/02/10 sent out to all PBA’ers announcing their World Initiative…read between the lines and you’ll see that they are claiming to be a $200 million company in profits…do the math.. that means they are claiming to take in over $400 million per year since their net is $200 million with 50% of the gross and then minus out expenses. Such a crock! That’s why they will ALWAYS refuse to provide proof of corporate finances….I guaran…f..n…tee you that they take in less than $2 million per year gross! Prove me wrong PBA…prove me wrong!!!

    Additionally, consider this about this ESTEEMED company; the initiative was supposed to have ripple effects across this great nation via a Hiroshima style media blitz and national/international news coverage and “viral” internet presence; but in fact the response was nothing more than that of a fart in the woods under high wind conditions. The word is that the World Initiative is discontinued due to a serious lack of interest. So much for HIGH HOPES! The only thing HIGH is those who came up with this lame-ass idea which was all smoke and no fire! And what were they smoking? Whatever it was it could not have been legal! Warning: if you can truly read through this entire email without the use of an airline barf bag, then you are of strong ilk…congrats.

    Now onto the email posted by the COO on August 2, 2010:

    Dear Partners,

    WOW, these last 10 days all of us here at “corporate” have been flying at a thousand mph with our hair on fire!

    I’m sure you have been ‘anxiously’ awaiting this announcement. We are proud to announce our ‘Rebuild America and the World’ Initiative.

    This initiative will be communicated worldwide via press release (see attached) tonight (at 12:00 PM ET). We have already advised our franchise client companies and are awaiting their signed NDA/Non-Compete in order to share the idea and have them participate with us (we actually already received a high number back as I write this).

    Our goal at PBA is to be leaders through this economic crisis. We are tired of hearing the negative press and depressing news all the time and decided it was time to be a part of the solution…and a catalyst for change! Could there ever have been a greater opportunity to announce something very positive? We think not.

    All PBA shareholders have graciously agreed to GIVE AWAY up to $20,000,000 (in words: twenty Million USD), 10% of the company’s profits in order to make this happen!!! You may be asking why would we, at “corporate”, do that??? The answer is simple: This amount will help to create up to 5,000 NEW Businesses across the nation and result in a total cash infusion of $400,000,000!! The long-term impact is HUGE!!!

    There is NOBODY out there who does what we are about to do starting this Wednesday, nor is there ANYBODY out there who GIVES capital to new franchisees/ licensees…with NO strings attached!

    The program will NOT reduce YOUR commissions, only ours (the franchisors will net off PBAs corporate contribution (which will be 5% of the entire franchise fee payable to the franchisor). We only sponsor franchise/ license fees up to $100,000 per case. YOU MAY ADVERTISE THIS, if you wish.

    There is no (zero) cost to the franchisor, or you, the Advisor!!! This program begins with all new candidates who enter into discovery with a franchise/ license beginning Wednesday, August 4 (and yes, it will include the (our) PBA SA opportunities as well).

    In exchange for being able to do (and pay for) all this, we ask for your (admin/ management) support, which is the CRITICAL element to make this all work as follows:

    1) Be sure to register every candidate-entering discovery with PBA CORP at mailto:PBA4U@EARTHLINK.NET. Only franchises/ licenses etc. up to 100K Franchise Fee qualify (no hybrids, no Area Developers over $100K, no franchises/ licenses/ distributorships over $100K).

    2) We need your help making this announcement as ‘viral’ as possible.

    A) For those of you on Face Book, please post the press release and ask all your friends to post the press release for all their friends.

    B) For those of you on LinkedIn, please post the press release with a note asking all to share the release with their contacts. If you belong to any LinkedIn ‘groups’ be sure to post in your group pages….I think you get the picture. THIS is HUGELY important and will result in a SIGNIFICANT stream of new candidates/ business to you PERSONALLY! (Please note:” Corporate” will be ‘blogging’ on sites such as WSJ, Time, CNN, Fox, etc. and will disseminate these new candidates to you as well!!).

    3) We need you to send this press release to every single candidate in your database (see NEW Act! templates attached). We believe this announcement will have such a positive impact and create so much ‘buzz’ that you will be very busy. Many of you might even be able to hold off on ordering new leads for some 2-3 weeks until you/we can realize the full impact of the announcement!!

    4) The Press Release is attached as a Word and PDF Document. Please feel free to insert your name & personal contact information, call you local newspaper and ask if they would be willing to post this in the business section… nice local publicity for you and PBA!!

    This is a very ‘news worthy’ piece and many newspapers would be most happy to post the announcement for free!

    5) Finally, this is VERY IMPORTANT!!! We have attached brand new, fresh email campaign templates together with the import “How To” instructions. We now have 12 total templates (rather than the previous 7).

    The campaign incorporates 2 templates for this press release (these templates are #2810 and #3810 in sequence). Please immediately begin this new email campaign with email #2. For example, if you are at email #3 in your ‘regular’ sequence, pick up with #2 and follow this new sequence.

    If you are at email #6, pick up with #2 and follow the sequence, and so on. It is VERY IMPORTANT to follow this sequence attached, which has been designed for maximum impact and response). When you do order a new batch of leads (probably not necessary for 2-3 weeks when you do the above), please begin your campaign with email #1 and follow the sequence.

    We hope you find this announcement as exciting and positive as we do. Lets all be a catalyst for POSITIVE change. We are certainly putting our money where our mouth is and we need you to participate 200% by sending the email campaign, inform the local press, post this on Facebook, LinkedIn etc. (as discussed above), and reaching out to as many candidates as possible and helping us to make this viral. Thanks so much in advance for your support and enthusiasm, (y)our upside out of this is only limited by our imagination and effort!!

    Best regards,
    Donna
    Rebuilding the World one Business at a time

    Donna Wright
    -COO & Executive Senior Advisor-
    Personal (Business) Advisors , LLC
    Executive Network of America.com, LLC

  12. 23 Al Benatt October 11, 2011 at 6:03 pm

    PBA has been pursuing me doggedly for more than a month via email messages but I’ve not set up a phone conversation with them. I found this page and your comments via a Google search on personal business advisors reviews. I found quite a few other pages which are ostensibly individuals’ blogs but which appear to me to have been set up by PBA – they all contain identical blog posts and they all bear exactly the same tags including “Personal Business Adviors” followed by words like “reviews”, “scam”, “complaints” so they can capture traffic from those like me seeking info on PBA’s reputation. So it appears to be an attempt to capture as many spots as possible within the first few pages of search results. As you might imagine, the blog post does not deal at all with a review of PBA, it does not have anything to do with whether or not it is a scam, nor does it mention any complaints whatsoever. It simply makes a case for starting one’s own business and then mentions the service that PBA provides to match executives with appropriate businesses. Pretty sneaky.

  13. 24 aLex September 22, 2012 at 4:40 am

    question however is:
    a) is there a way tpo report it internationally to any authority
    b) how to make sure ones own name is not being miss-used
    c) if according to Forbes such person exists and his identity is being used, how can he / she / they be warned and take actions as well…

  14. 25 T Brian October 24, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Those of you seeking funds from foreign sources with businesses based in the US must be aware the State Department may frown on funds coming out of certain countries in the middle east even though the funds may be washed in the UK. Majid Al Futtaim also has investments in Syria, Iran, and Lebanon.

  15. 26 Scot M. April 18, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    Seems like a scam. the list now facts about themselves. I would bet 95% on scam. But it is a smart, well designed scam.

  16. 27 Uwe Brettmann October 26, 2016 at 3:26 pm

    Dear Writer,

    At Personal Business Advisors we appreciate all forms of constructive criticism to help us improve our ability to serve. In this case, we would like to comment about the views expressed here however we are unable to find any significant information about you or your claims in our records.

    While we recognize your opinions, we cannot confirm that they come from any personal experience. Just because we can’t validate your views, doesn’t mean we aren’t interested in finding a solution. We’d be happy to discuss your grievances further, but we cannot find any substantial profile information about you to help us contact you. Please feel free to reach out to us at your convenience.

    We look forward to hearing from you.

    Uwe Brettmann

    CEO & Chairman, Personal Business Advisors


  1. 1 Notorious Scams Online at Happening Now Trackback on July 6, 2008 at 6:04 am

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