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Vending Machine Scams

Updated on August 10, 2010

Vending Machine Business Opportunity Scams

Deceptive vending machine business opportunity advertisements are growing more and more common.  Deceptive advertisements for this type of service generally read something like the following:

Vending Machine Business Opportunity
Service an established vending machine route.
Part-time hours. No prior experience necessary.
No selling necessary.Get paid $5,000 per month.

You may find newspaper advertisements like this interesting, particularly when you're looking for part-time jobs to supplement your income. Nonetheless use a lot of caution when considering this type of offer.

Even though some business opportunities servicing vending machines are legitimate, a lot of aren't. The fact is that they are risky investment opportunities, that do not include any kind of guarantee.

Some companies have also been charged with misrepresenting the revenue potential and also the ease and speed with which the machines can be delivered, taken care of, placed, and repaired if/when needed.

Corporations have aslo been convicted of offering bogus referrals and for failing to deliver important pre-investment details the FTC requires.

There's certainly no secret about the way vending business opportunities work. Here we're doing to discuss the following:

  • What to do for if you are considering this kind of investment, and
  • how you can stay away from unethical vending machine business opportunity marketers and
  • Several groups that can help you in the event you believe you've been defrauded.

What is a Vending Machine Business Opportunity?

A vending business opportunity might involve snack vending machines, soda vending machines, fax machines and copiers, amusement games, or lots of other styles of vending machines. The machines could be in shopping malls, airports, bowling alleys, or other sorts of community facilities.

Usually, your personal obligations include cleaning and restocking the vending machines, making sure they are in working order, as well as removing the money from the vending machines.

You could earn a percentage of the profits from the services or products. Some marketers could tell you that you can expect to generate a specific amount of money or even guarantee a baseline revenue.

Other marketers could possibly say their earnings predictions are averages based on incomes of existing providers.

Marketers of vending machine business opportunities could promise to help you operate the vending machine business opportunity. For example, they might:

  • Offer vending machines that are already located in proven locations, or even to help get locations on your behalf;
  • Offer you restoration services to correct damaged machines, or to give replacements for all the defective vending machines; or
  • Relocate the machines to more profitable places at a person's request.

Vending Machine Business Opportunity - Potential Problems

Many people have had difficulties associated with falsification of profits and also support services. Review the following complaints received concerning some vending business opportunities.

  • Right after making an investment of several thousand dollars in vending machines and merchandise for resale, quite a few people discovered that the promoters failed to deliver the equipment they promised.
  • Quite a few marketers wouldn't supply the support services as depicted in their marketing pitch. For example, numerous marketers didn't make good on their promised vending machine locations or vending machine routes; others moved vending machines to different - though not profitable - locations.
  • Some marketers would not hire a repair service to renovate damaged vending machines. In all these circumstances, buyers paid for repair services or even paid for brand new vending machines using their own money.
  • Some investors failed to receive the promised amount of income.
  • Quite a few promoters declined to honor requests for promised refunds.

When Is A Vending Machine Business Opportunity A Franchise

The business opportunity is regarded as a "franchise" in the event that:

  1. You are going to sell or distribute products or services which are furnished by either the business or a designated vendor.
  2. The organization is going to assist you to by acquiring vending machine locations or sites for your vending machines.
  3. You are forced to pay the company $500 or even more at the time you sign the agreement or within six months after you start operating your business.

If the businesses vending machine business opportunity falls under the category of a franchise, the business must give you a disclosure document before signing a contract and / or commit any money.

This particular disclosure is actually required by the FTC Franchise Rule, the Franchise Disclosure Document can provide very important information with regards to a company. Make sure to pay special attention to the portions detailing:

  • The industry related working experience of the company and its owners;
  • Any kind of litigation brought against the corporation or their owners by franchisees, and suits claiming fraudulent activities;
  • Expenses you are going to must pay along with the situations under which any fees or deposits will be returned to you;
  • The number of vending machine franchises, the owners names and addresses of franchisees near you, and the exact number of franchises terminated or not renewed throughout the previous year;
  • The firm's balance sheet for the most recent fiscal year, their income statement and a declaration of variations in financial situation for their 3 most current fiscal years; as well as
  • Substantiation for any specific claims about your probable income and the revenue of current investors.

These details can help you make up your mind whether the firm is likely to stand behind their claims.  Additionally, it may help you to determine the likelihood of success.

Vending Machine Business Opportunity - How to Protect Yourself

Taking certain safety measures can decrease the risk of making an investment in a less-than-reputable vending machine business opportunity:

  • Make sure to contact the the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and the Bureau of Consumer Protection in your area and additionally the location where the company is headquartered. These kinds of organizations let you know if there are unresolved problems about the business offering the vending business opportunity. 

    Despite the fact that grievances could warn you of issues, the lack of issues will not necessarily indicate the company is reputable. Dishonest corporations might settle complaints, alter their names, or move to prevent detection.
  • Be sure to to verify claims made by the business and the company's references. Take a look at existing placements and the anticipated locations for the vending machines. You may well end up being able to figure out from the discussion with those shop proprietors and their managers whether the machines are, or perhaps if they are going to be, successful.
  • Make certain to ask them how many people go through their business daily and what these shoppers are interested in purchasing. Make sure to inquire about additional investors in the area about their experiences with the business.
  • Be sure to contact the Secretary of State from the state where the organization is based to check the length of time it has been in business
  • Be sure to ask the company to confirm in writing all earnings claims. Don't forget that investors' incomes vary based upon machines physical location, the amount of use the vending machines get, the items offered for sale, and the demand for the merchandise. Despite the fact that investors might have earned a "substantial" profit in one local community or even state is no mean that you can do the same in your own sales area.

Getting in any kind of business opportunity could require a substantial monetary investment. You ought to consult a lawyer, financial adviser, and / or other company consultants before you sign any binding agreement or make any upfront payments.

Your lawyer will want to assess the organizations contract and also give you advice on how to proceed. In the event that the firm demands some sort of deposit / down payment, you might need the attorney to create an escrow account in which the money will be maintained through a neutral 3rd party.

Vending Machine Business Opportunity - When You've Been Scammed

If you believe that you have been scammed by one of the many types of vending machine scams then, get in touch with the corporation and request a refund. Make certain to inform the company that you're planning to tell authorities about your experience with their company.

Be sure to keep track of the talks and also correspondence. Whenever you send out paperwork to the organization, be certain that you send copies, and not the originals. Make sure to mail documents by certified mail with a return receipt requested. This method will enable you to document what the organization received.

If you can't resolve a dispute with the vending machine firm, a number of organizations may be able to assist you. Your phone book should contain the complete names, their mailing addresses, and also their contact numbers for these agencies:

  • Bureau of Consumer Protection at (800) 422-7128.
  • The National Fraud Information Center at (800) 876- 7060, 9 a.m. til 5:30 p.m., Monday to Friday, or on the web at The NFIC is a non-profit organization which operates a consumer support telephone hotline to provide help and services for people which may need to file complaints.
  • Your area Better Business Bureau and the Better Business Bureau where the vending machine company is based.
  • The local United States Postmaster. The United States Postal Service assesses deceptive mail practices.
  • The advertising and marketing director of the publication which ran the business opportunity offer.
  • The Federal Trade Commission. Though the Federal Trade Commission cannot help with resolution to individual disputes, the Federal Trade Commission will be able to take action when there's evidence of a pattern of deceptive and even unfair practices. The easiest method to submit a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is with their internet based complaint form which may be found here: One other method is to write to them at the following address:

Federal Trade Commission
Consumer Response Center
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20580


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    • smcopywrite profile image


      5 years ago from all over the web

      wonderful article hitting all of the high points of these types of scams. voted up and useful


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