Is ACN a Scam or Pyramid Scheme? My Review! [2021]

Welcome to my ACN review 2021!

ACN claims that you can get paid every time someone talked on the phone, sent text messages, surfed the Internet, watched television, swiped a credit card or used electricity or natural gas.

Don’t get too excited as these claims are common from multi-level marketing companies and I must say that you need to consider many things before joining ACN.

That’s why; I must congratulate you for spending your time in reaching this.

I assure you that I am not connected to ACN in any form. Instead, my mission is to reveal the truths of this Company so that you can make the right decision.

Is it really that easy for ACN to fulfill its promises? Is it worth your time? And most importantly, is ACN a scam or legit?

Here’s the truth;

ACN Review 2021! [Summary]

Product Name: ACN, LLC (formerly ACN, Inc.)


Founder: Robert Stevanovski, Greg Provenzano, Tony Cupisz, and Mike Cupisz


Product Type: Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) Company that sells Telecommunication services


Price: $499 to start + $39.99/month + $149/year


Best For: People who are skilled at recruiting people

Is ACN a Scam

Summary: ACN is a legitimate MLM company that sells telecommunication services. It is one of very few direct sales companies that are running since 1993. As the Company deals in products which are part of our daily life, hence, it is easier for their IBOs to make money by selling those services.


However many people think it as a scam just due to it has a high upfront cost, total dependency on recruitment and small profit margins. Also, there are many complaints in the form of slow speed internet, non-availability of income disclosure statement, and expensive products make it a bad option for the people.


Rating: 55/100


Verdict: No

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What is ACN?

ACN stands for "American Communications Network."

It is a North-American based Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) company founded in 1993 by Greg Provenzano, Robert Stevanovski, Tony Cupisz, and Mike Cupisz.

All those co-founders had vast experience in direct sales companies, but they were dissatisfied with their services. This leads them to create a Company which they think is the right solution for everyone. 

ACN Cofounders

ACN is the world's leading direct seller of telecommunications, energy and other essential services for business and homes customers.

ACN provides services which people use them on a daily basis like the Internet, Home Phone, Energy, Television, etc.

With the passage of time, ACN has expanded over to 25 countries with offices located throughout North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia, and the Pacific.

The Company is also the largest direct selling company in the telecommunication sector and has annual revenue of $800 million.

ACN Product Line

ACN basically offers residential and business services. The services are as follows:

ACN Product Line
1). Residential Services:
  • Digital phone services - The service price is $24.99 per month, and because of this you can make calls using your very fast Internet connection and existing home phone. Don’t forget this service also includes unlimited calling to more than 80 landline and mobile destinations.
  • High-speed Internet - Nationwide high-speed Internet in AT&T and Frontier territories and pricing for this service starting at $14.99 per month.
  • Flash Wireless - This wireless service is essentially a phone plan with the option of pre-paid or postpaid. The family plan starts at $39.99 per month with 4 lines of Unlimited Talk, Text & Data.
  • There are three different pricing plans: yellow, purple, and green. The yellow pricing plan ranges from $23 to $69 per month, the purple pricing plan ranges from $$23 to $64 per month depending on the features you choose and The green pricing plan ranges from $23-$79 per month.
  • XOOM energy -This is ACN's renewable energy options for a home in selective places. They provide two different plans: fixed and variable. With the fixed plan; your price is guaranteed for the term of your service. If you choose the variable plan; your monthly rate will fluctuate up and down, but you can stop or switch your service at any time. For more specialized direct selling company in energy sector, I suggest you to see my Ambit Energy review.
  • Television - ACN offers dish and DirecTV.
    • Dish – This package starts in $54.99 per month and includes 190 channels.
    • DirecTV - DIRECTV comes with theater quality 4K Ultra HD Resolution and no signals issue.
  • Home security and automation - It also offers home security solutions where you can receive notifications and control your smart home system from anywhere, wireless security and surveillance with 24 x 7 continuous video recording. The price is $50 with no activation fee.
2). Business Services:

Business services include all the services mentioned above as well as;

  • Anovia Payment Processing - This is a complete credit card processing solution permits you to process all payment types; Debit, Credit, Gift Cards, e-commerce, and e-checks. It is an ideal solution for;
    • Retail & Shopping
    • Hospitality & Restaurants
    • Services
    • Online Stores
    • Independent contractors

What Do People Are Saying?

Just like any other MLM company, there are both types of reviews; some are praising their services while others not.

Review 1
Review 2
Review 3
Review 4

The good thing is their services relate to things that we use on a daily basis.

You cannot live without internet, phone, and multimedia nowadays.

However, I must say one thing that most of their customers aren’t happy with their internet speed and phone packages.

Anyway, the best thing is to try it yourself and see whether their services can work for you or not.

ACN complaints
ACN complaint 2
ACN complaint 3

How to Make Money from ACN?

The ACN Opportunity claims that it has been planned to help you create a successful business of your own.

ACN Independent Business Owners (IBOs),  a term they used to denote for their distributors, can make money in two ways:

  1. Monthly residual commissions calculated on their personal and downline customers’ usage of ACN’s services.
  2. Recruit people to earn weekly and monthly bonuses.

To earn all those you first need to become their independent business owner (IBO). You must first fill out the ACN IBO agreement form.

To submit that agreement, you first need to pay an “application fee” of $499. So, you assume this is as a startup fee to get started with their business opportunity.

As per them, the purpose of this fee is to provide you with the basic training and resources to get started with the business.

You are also provided a custom website where you can sell their services to potential customers.

Remember, you are their IBO, not an employee you can choose your own hours and select your own means of operation.

To be more precise; here are the services you will get;

  • Personalized online store
  • Hosted and updated daily
  • Product info and ordering
  • Live operators
  • Customer care and billing
  • Customer tracking and reporting
  • IBO support call center
  • Online training

Apart from $499, there's also a $149 per annum fee which according to them is to cover the cost of servicing your business.

Wait a minute my friend….

There is one more fee, after paying above they'll tell you that you can get an optional upsell called "Your Business Assistant (YBO)" at a monthly fee of $39.99 per month which contains "everything you need" to succeed with the business.

All IBOs are required to expend an additional fee up to $10 per week for online meetings.

And up to $159 plus your extra cost for food and travel accommodations to join periodic ACN training events.

Positions and Ranks:

Every IBO starts with the rank of Team Trainer (TT). Other more advanced ranks are;

  • Executive Team Trainer
  • Executive Team Leader
  • Team Coordinator
  • Regional Director
  • Regional Vice President
  • Senior Vice President

You can only achieve the upper rank if you recruit more people.

ACN Positions and Ranks

ACN Compensation Plan:

There are three central ways for you to get paid by ACN:

  • Monthly Residual Commissions – If you bring new customers to the Company, you can earn anywhere between 1% to 10% of their monthly bills. For example, if your personal customers are using $500 a month plan; you'll get paid 1% of that $500. That would be a residual income of $20 per month through that one customer. The rate of commission is as follows;
    • 1-29 Customer Points = 1%
    • 30-39 Customer Points = 3%
    • 40-59 Customer Points = 5%
    • 60+ Customer Points = 10%
  • Overriding Residual Commissions - The Overriding Residual Commissions includes the percentage of income you receive based on your people recruited by your recruits.
  • The Company uses a 7-level uni plan. It means the people you recruit stay on your 1st level, their recruits go on your 2nd level, and so on all the way down to 7th level. For levels first, second and third you will earn $0.25%, for level 4 you will earn 0.50% and 3%, 5% and 8% for levels 5, 6, and 7 respectively.
ACN Compensation Plan
  • Customer Acquisition Bonuses - These are bonuses bestowed to those people who can recruit a certain number of qualified downline members within a specified period.

For further detail, please see to their compensation plan PDF document here or watch the video below:

Pros & Cons:

The Good

1. Trusted Brand

ACN is a trusted Company, and this thing becomes evident if you see that the Company has been operating since 1993. That is more than 25 years.

How many direct sale companies you have seen that has a lifespan of over 25 years?

Very few!

ACN is Legit

They are also a member of the Direct Selling Association (DSA) and Direct Selling Education Foundation (DSEF).

Not only this they are also Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited business and has ratings of A+.

All those things show that the Company is a legit opportunity and it is complying with rules and regulations of the world’s leading organizations that are created for the protection of consumers.

As a word of caution; you should remember that getting memberships from those sites cannot be taken as a guarantee that ACN is a worthwhile opportunity.

When someone becomes ACN customer, you are also positively impacting the life of a child as they are also contributing to a project called Feeding Kids.

It means you are not only building a business but also making a difference in society.

2. Residual Income

As the nature of the services of the Company is on a subscription basis so if you bring in a few customers, you can expect to earn a residual income each month.

They also have set up costly cancellation fees if your customers want to cancel the subscription before it expires.

However, you shouldn’t expect much as I've already mentioned that ACN offers very low rates for a residual commission.

3. Much Easier to Sell

If you look at most of the MLM companies where it is tough for their distributors to convince people to use their products because;

  • They are not necessities
  • There is a lot of competitor’s products available

However, if we look at the ACN, it provides a home-based business to earn income on the services people are using in a routine. In today’s world, we all need the Internet, phones, electricity, gas to survive.

In other words, you don't need to create a demand for such goods as they are already in demand from the people.

It’s now your task is to provide people with better packages so they can save more and get better services.

It’s just my thought; you could sell much easier as compared to companies selling supplements and essential oils.

The Bad

1. High Upfront Cost

The cost to start in running this business is very high. If you are getting the same services from a service provider at cheap rates so why you bother to join this and also how you can bring new people to this Company and make money.

Let’s calculate the cost of starting a business with the ACN;

  • $499 signup fee
  • $149 per year renewal fee
  • $39.99 per month "Your Business Assistant" subscription

So the total cost for the first year nearly becomes to $1,130.

However, I haven’t included all other miscellaneous costs such as training events and the cost needed for your marketing campaigns.

So, this high upfront cost isn’t only making hard for yourself to bring recruits but also for your recruits to bring their recruits. That’s how you can earn a good income from all of your downline if they grow quickly.

2. Not For Everyone

If you don’t know the success rate in MLM business; you will be surprised to hear that more than 99% of people get failed. So, less than 1% people are successful in this business.

Additionally, some researches have shown that nearly 0.5% even make their initial investment back. So, after paying $499, you should forget this.

The people who are successful are those people who have good marketing skills, and they don’t fear to tell to other people.

3. Compensation Plan isn’t Easy to Make Money

Although I have mentioned residual income each month due to recurring subscription but these services, have a very small profit margin.

For example, you can only earn 2% commission from these bills in the beginning.

Let say your customer signed up for a $40/month internet plan. 2% of that is only $0.80/per of residual income.

I know small commissions can add up very quickly, but for earning a sustainable income, you need to bring in too many customers whom I believe is tough for you.

Example

Let’s suppose you become their IBO and bring two people who also become IBOs. Now, these people also bring two people each, and they become IBOs as well. 

This is going on and on until the 7th level (you can earn overriding residual income until 7th level), and now you have 254 IBOs in your downline.

Each IBO in your organization also brings 5 customers each then the total customers in your organization counted to 1,270 (254 x 5).

Let’s suppose each of those customers is spending an average of $30 per month then you will only be earning a residual income of $2,000 per month. 

Compensation Plan isn’t Easy to Make Money

4. Service Speeds Issues

Some customers have indicated how the customer services are absolutely awful, especially slow Internet and phone issues.

If somehow you don’t like that service and want to cancel it, keep remembering in mind that there is a cancellation fee.

So, why people bother to pay such high prices when they don’t get quality services.

5. Massive Complaints

You will find tons of complaints about ACN. This makes it difficult for you to sell it to other people.

As brand reputation is a major issue in today’s world and if there is a lot of negativity on the web and people don’t bother to join them.

Also if you look at the BBB there you find 117 complaints registered and most of the complaints fall into three categories;

  • Advertising and sales
  • Billings issue
  • Problems with products and services

Out of 117 complaints, 57 have been registered in case of their services.

It means people are not happy with them so your dream of earning residual income each month couldn’t be fulfilled because people will again switch to other service providers if they don’t get quality services.

6. No Income Disclosure Statement

Income Disclosure Statement is a statement which is shown by the Companies to guide people about their distributors’ average earnings per month.

So, this let them decide about how much they can also earn if they want to be their distributors.

Though all of their claims are inflated still, it is a good document.

However, I couldn’t find this document in the ACN and in the absence of this document I have a right to say that their distributors’ aren’t earning a good income.

Is ACN a Pyramid Scheme?

To be a pyramid scheme, a Company must not offer real products and only uses its compensation plan to hire new people and as a result of this people buy their products.

So, the only way people are buying their products is due to the business opportunity it offers.

If you look at ACN;

  • The Company offers real products that are also in demand from people on a regular basis, and
  • The Company rewards its IBO based on sales, not recruitment

IBOs can only make money when they bring people who will sign up for certain services provided by ACN. The Company then award IBOs "Customer Commissions," which is a 1% to 10% of what people spend on those subscriptions.

This is why ACN is not a pyramid scheme.

Is ACN a Scam?

Many people think out as a scam opportunity because it works on traditional recruiting.

For example, you'll need to come up with a list of 100 people to contact and things like that. However, after reading all above you now have concluded that ACN is not a scam.

Over 25 years, the Company is offering services to its customers and are contributing nearly $800 million in the GDP of the USA economy.

If it is a scam, then it should already be shut down by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

However, since the profit margin is very small, the only way for you to make big bucks is by recruiting tons of people under your downline, which I know 99% of people cannot do this.

That's why it's very controversial, and many people called it a scam and pyramid scheme.

Regardless of whether ACN is a scam or not, I'm sure you wouldn't want to be a part of a very controversial company, right?

Final Verdict:

Though ACN is a legit MLM company, my suggestion is to go for your own homemade business.

The company charges a high upfront cost, and also there are other monthly expenditures attaches to it. The only way you can earn is by recruiting people, but why people buy their services when they are already getting it at fewer prices.

If you want to make money, I recommend you my favorite business model, i.e., Affiliate Marketing, which is the only business method I suggest for beginners to make a sustainable income from home.

I prefer affiliate marketing over MLM because;

  • Unlike ACN, you don't have to recruit anyone to make money
  • It gives you control and ownership that ACN doesn’t
  • No need for face to face marketing
  • You are only promoting ACN. However, in affiliate marketing, you have the warrant to promote anything you want. This reduces your reliance on one product.
  • It's Free to get started

Even if you are a complete beginner, there is no need to worry. I will show you my #1 system that I have been using the money since 2005, i.e., Wealthy Affiliate which is the only platform I recommend to make money online.

You will get all the training step by step and support from the community member along with me as well.

What's your thoughts on my ACN review 2021 and if what's your thought on, Is ACN a scam?

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