The DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking warns District residents against a company called Profitable Sunrise that several states and Canadian provinces have accused of marketing fraudulent investments over the Internet.
The Minnesota Department of Commerce has banned the company from selling in that state and says 19 other jurisdictions in Canada and the US have taken coordinated action against the company.
Profitable Sunrise markets itself as making short-term loans to businesses at 3 percent per business day and returning at least 2 percent a day to investors risk-free, an extraordinarily profitable return. Minnesota and the other jurisdictions allege the operation is a pyramid scheme, in which the managers never actually turn a profit on the ostensible business but instead rely on investors constantly recruiting new investors in order to generate cash.
“As with any investment, the old saying is always right,” said Theodore (Tony) Miles, associate commissioner for securities of the District regulatory agency. “If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.”
Profitable Sunrise markets itself through YouTube, FaceBook and its own website, which appeals to religious people – a ploy called “affinity marketing” – by putting religious scriptures on each page. Minnesota and the other jurisdictions say the company is not properly registered to sell investments and misrepresents facts on its website.
Profitable Sunrise is not registered to sell investments in the District of Columbia, either. Nor is the investment offering registered with the Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking; and the department has not received a filing asserting the company is exempt from registration.