Viridian MLM Model - Sustainable?

I have some friends that have signed on as Associates with Viridian Energy. They’re busy recruiting everyone they know to sign up for “guaranteed” cheaper rates and “you can cancel any time with no penalty”.

I don’t see any issues with MLM models, in general. Instead of spending money on advertising/direct marketing, etc., they use a word-of-mouth concept and divvy up the marketing costs amongst their associates.

They advertise that at least 20% of their energy supply is “green”. All-in-all, they seem to be honest on their website. However, I did notice that Viridian’s historical rate per kwh is now just below the standard rate: (warning: pdf)

http://www.viridian.com/assets/marketing/Viridian_Historical_Rate_NJ-PSEG.pdf

I’ve decided that being an Associate is not for me, since I’m not the type to bring up energy bills with friends, family and acquaintances. But I’m always willing to help my friends out, and am considering converting my home to Viridian. My only fear is that at some point, Viridian will end up costing more than other options.

How sustainable is the Viridian model? Have any fellow dopers converted to Viridian? Any opinions are welcome.

you might want to look at this thread, which was eventually locked when it turned into a schill-fest for MLM energy companies.

I think that in any honest business venture of this sort your friends and family should be the absolute last people you try to hit up. If it goes wrong with a stranger/customer, you get an unpleasant scene. If it goes wrong with a friend/relative/customer, you get an unpleasant scene at every get together.

Agreed, which is why I could never be an Associate. I’d actually feel much worse if I signed up 100 people, made my “residual income” from them, and then found out that they paid more than they should. At least I would be able to repay my close friends and family. But I wouldn’t be able to repay 100 people.

One of the strategies that Associates employ is to stake their personal reputations on the company. However, they don’t really know how the business model works or how it might fall apart.

I’d rather preserve what’s left of my personal rep, however little that may be! :smiley:

I myself just switched to Veridian last week.

I tend to be skeptical of anything that’s marketed through a MLM marketing scheme, and Viridian is no exception. However, my brother, though generally an equally skeptical guy, for whatever reason allowed himself to be persuaded to sign on as an Associate, and sent me an invitation. When I asked him about it, he said he doesn’t really know why he signed up for it, but at this point he’s looking to make back his upfront money.

So I signed on. I figure the worst thing that can happen is that for three months I pay slightly more than what I’m paying now. More likely I pay around the same or slightly lower. At that point, I can switch back any time. And at any rate, I’ll be helping out my brother.

But I’ve obviously not been on it long enough to have any experience with the company.

Is Viridian Energy a subsidiary of Veridian Dynamics? (For those who don’t remember, Veridian Dynamics was the evil multinational corporation that employed the main character in the sadly now-cancelled ABC sitcom Better Off Ted.)