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The shocking dark past of MMM and its founder

The shocking dark past of MMM and its founder

MMM stands for Mavrodi Mondial Moneybox and it was founded in 1989 by Sergei Mavrodi, his brother Vyacheslav Mavrodi, and Olga Melnikova.

The shocking dark past of MMM and its founder

MMM stands for Mavrodi Mondial Moneybox

After a rapid growth of the company, it all came crashing in 1994 when the police closed down MMM over tax evasion. The company was owing its investors $50m-$1.5bn. This made about 50 of the MMM investors commit suicide as they couldn't cope with the huge loss of money. According to Wikipedia, the company was involved in one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in the 1990s. It was estimated that thousands of people lost up to $10 billion dollars.

The shocking dark past of MMM and its founder

Sergey Panteleevich Mavrodi is a Russian criminal and a former deputy of the State Duma. He is the official face, creator and founder of МММ

MMM prides itself on the success of a nonexistent enterprise achieved by the payment of quick returns to the first set of investors from money invested by later investors. Investors are paid certain percentage of the money they put into the scheme after some days. Although the scheme doesn't make any profit, it pays older investors with the money from newer investors. We can say it's a case of robbing Peter to pay Paul.

READ ALSO: MMM crash: 7 things you must do before investing in any networking scheme

No wonder  the Chinese government banned MMM in January 2016. Mavrodi himself is reported to have gone into hiding after a separate entity designed to reward investors with the cryptocurrency bitcoin – dubbed the “Republic of Bitcoin” – folded in April this year.

The shocking dark past of MMM and its founder

One of the funny images that came up when MMM collapsed in South Africa

MMM Global has however danced it's way into the heart of Africa, with branches promising returns on investment of 30 per cent a month in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Nigeria and some other east African states. Recently, MMM Global Zimbabwe system collapsed with millions of people on the scheme losing lots of money. This was after the country's National Reserve bank warned its citizen against having anything to do with the Ponzi scheme. Well, no one listened. Everyone wants to get rich quickly by all means. A few weeks ago MMM in Zimbabwe stopped withdrawals, no investors could get help.

READ ALSO: MMM: Ponzi schemes, pyramid schemes and the complicit thievery of an educated elite

In South Africa, MMM crashed in May 2016. The company claimed that it was a media panic and said it was 'starting all over'. In January 2016, MMM landed in Nigeria and it's gaining momentum not minding the company's shady background in Russia.

Yes, MMM pays (like the popular saying) but it's for a while. Have you ever noticed how you decide to put a small amount of money the first time and when you see the return, you decide to raise the amount you invest the next time? Yes, that's how it works. Gullible people are caught right in the middle and by the time you know it, the company fizzes into tiny air. Even the Central Bank of Government has warned Nigerians not to invest in it but a lot of people swear MMM is legit and it pays.

Have you ever tried to check the meaning of the word 'Mavro' used in MMM? According to Urban Dictionary, Mavro is a black person or a stupid ghetto person who exudes black-like qualities. Mavro is of Greek origin, and many Greeks use the word as a derogatory to label inept, black, and/or ugly dark people.

Remember Wonderbank? Only time will tell!

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