Breaking MLM News: ViSalus Sciences Co-Founder Nick Sarnicola Breaks The Silence Surrounding Robert Dean’s Private Money Deals

A couple of weeks ago, I did a news editorial on a Direct Little Secret in MLM. Well now things seem to be heating up as another top MLM Leader – ViSalus Sciences (Body By Vi), Co-Founder Nick Sarnicola has broken his silence.

Back in September, former top Noni leader, Monavie leader, Evolv leader, ViSalus leader, and now potential Limu leader Robert Dean cut a personal money deal to bring his top 15 leaders to ViSalus.

I am proud Nick is willing to break his silence in order to set the record straight, and protect more damage to unsuspecting distributors.

ViSalus Science Co-Founder Nick Sarnicola Breaks His Silence On The Robert Dean Deal

Robert Dean’s Private Money Deal To Join ViSalus What About His Team? Now Limu!

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41 thoughts on “Breaking MLM News: ViSalus Sciences Co-Founder Nick Sarnicola Breaks The Silence Surrounding Robert Dean’s Private Money Deals”

  1. I'm not politically correct either and this southern boy redneck waving the American flag should know that it is African American and/or Black American.

    Take your pick. I prefer Black American or American.

    Others prefer African American.

    The operative word being "American."

    You know, the people that help build this country.

    The same people that have fought for this country and continue to fight for this country.

    The least you can do is address your fellow Americans properly. (or not at all)

    I could care less about Dean.

    He's black and who gives a sh!t.

    He is or was one of the top networkers in the country irrespective of his race.

    Anyway, both Dean and Nick are of the same ilk.

    They are both looking to position themselves to make as much money as possible.

  2. Pingback: Breaking MLM News: Robert Dean & T.O.P.G.U.N. NOT Terminated By The Limu Company As Of January 25th 2012 | MLM Help Desk
  3. Melanie, thanks for clarifying that ViSalus doesn't make deals! What also needs to be stated is that even though Nick Co-Founded ViSalus, he stepped down from that position and built his network. He did so by working it the same as the rest of us and has made it to the top. Nicely stated, if a distributor decides to do a deal, that's his/her choice as an individual…..not as a company. ViSalus doesn't make deals!

  4. Troy-

    When I first clicked to this article, I made a conscious decision that I wasn't going to draw any preconceived conclusions about any of the parties involved in this writing, even though the name Robert Dean is pretty much synonymous with "business hopper" in our industry. So I read through the information you've presented, twice in fact, and also read through all of the accompanying comments. It's certainly a polarizing topic, and here are my thoughts.

    Robert Dean-In the immortal words of football coach Dennis Green a few years ago, Robert Dean "is who we thought he was." He's focused on getting the best deal for himself possible. One of the commenters above referenced Greed in this situation, and you said you don't see where greed comes in on either part.

    On the Dean side, he lied to his team about money that he was receiving (told them he wasn't) to avoid having to cut them in, and he lied to the "investors" about what he intended to use those funds for. So I think without question, once lying is introduced, we've moved from capitalism straight into greed. It would have been another thing entirely had he told his team "This is my deal, you want one, go get your own." But we all know how well that would've worked out for him, right?

    Nick Sarnicola- You say that"I am proud Nick is willing to break his silence in order to set the record straight, and protect more damage to unsuspecting distributors." But his response is filled with anger, vindictiveness and doublespeak, that never comes close to taking any personal accountability for this situation even occurring.

    The buzzword "investors" is used to give the appearance that Nick is outside of that group. but when we look at the agreement signed by Robert Dean, the signature opposite his is whose? Nick Sarnicola's. It doesn't state that Nick is signing on behalf of Empower Marketing Group, or in proxy for Empower Marketing Group, so from the way the contract is drawn up, I don't think we can take any conclusion other than that Nick IS Empower Marketing Group. Not the broker for the deal, but the actual party to the deal.

    But in order to pull off the "I'm only looking out for you" tone of his letter, he almost has to gloss over this fact, doesn't he? Otherwise, it's just not believable. It's very easy for him to throw Robert Dean under the bus, and believe me, he DESERVES to be under there, but it takes two to tango in this instance, and I think it's a very shady of him to use "they" and "them" when referencing the investors, when clearly his signature on that contract shows that he should be saying "US."

    So while I can't say that Nick Sarnicola was acting out of greed in this situation, it's pretty clear to me that he's making every attempt to position himself as an "uninvolved party," which at best is disengenuous, and at worst, is outright lying.

    Just one man's opinion on an awful situation.


  5. The "Independent" distributor was none other than Nick Sarnicola himself Co-Founder of Visalus.

    Visalus doesn't do deals……only the owners through an "Indpendent" corporation so Visalus can say "we don't do deals" PURE BULL!!! LOL

  6. Afro-American? Black MLMers? Ha ha. You are so politically incorrect buddy its not even funny.

  7. Thanks for the news Troy. It's always about the team. Take care of them and your business will take care of itself…

  8. Pingback: Breaking MLM News: Robert Dean Speaks Out About His Move To Limu : MLM Help Desk Home Of The Maverick Leader – Troy Dooly
  9. Right on Melanie! It was an Independent Distributors choice and it WILL NOT affect our future Growth!

  10. Dear Troy,

    upon hearing this story I posted a link to the article on my Facebook page along with this tag line: "The MLM industry has just taken another HUGE hit as the BIG bonuses these MLM CEO's have paid to Robert Dean come to light with Dallin Larsen of Monavie apparently being the biggest pimp of all."

    In my opinion that's these guys are is pimps. I swore of Networking 15 years ago and dared to get back in 3 years ago with Monavie. I was a Ruby in that business. When things went south I thought for months that is was my fault and beat myself up for it.

    I have since been in a couple of other companies ( I stopped listening to what the "pros" said and started watching what they do. I have now learned more about the MLM industry than I ever wanted to know. I have been privy to the backroom deals purpetrated by these pimp CEO's . I was personally affected by Dallin Larsens pimping of Robert Dean.

    The so called "millionare black diamonds" out in corona where I live all built there business with smoke and mirrors and by flat out lying to people. I have met people in the industry who gave me the real story on these guys.

    I have witnessed the same type of behavior in 2 other companies. So excuse me if i take issue with you when you say it is ok for these ceo's to pay these clowns to jump ship. And Dallin is the worse purpetrator of all in my opinion. These CEO's stand up on stage and proclaim to the average joe with no MLM experience that “if you just follow these steps and stay plugged in you too can be a millionaire” when they don’t follow the same steps to success themselves. They look for ways to shortcut the path while preaching to the choir “there are no shortcuts to success.”

    The MLM industry had it's problems in the past but based on what I've witnessed, I think its about to become a dead industry. I know I don't want any part of it.

  11. Brent,

    You make a great point. Folks will need to know what to look for, to fully understand all the numbers. However, with the new IRS rules it does make it harder to hide all the deals.

  12. Dr. Alexander,

    You do make a valid point. And a person would need to know what to look for, which for the average eye might be a little difficult.

    ViSalus is around 5 yrs old. Blythe entered into the picture I beleive about two years ago, give or take.

    In talking with Blake, he has told me perosnally they have never done a deal at Vi corporate. However, that doesn't mean a deal was not done on the side.

    And, I do not know anyone at Vi that would bring in seven figures. There are only a few folks which would warrant seven figures in the whole industry.

  13. Troy…keep doing what you're doing. I believe that intelligent discourse is good for all of us in this industry.

  14. Just because a company is "owned by a public company" doesn't mean all the actions of that company are made public. How long has ViSalus been in business? Again, the word on the street is they paid a leader a million dollars 2-3 years ago.

  15. Hey Troy …

    We've always taught 'fake it til ya make it' doesn't count for anything and doesn't work! In the past 4 years we've seen them all come and go. We know of these type situations and the people involved with them and are very disappointed in those that would always 'cut another deal' or prostitute themselves and their teams for such 'revolving' doors!

    We'd love to see the 'live' interview with a person such as this and hear WHY they went this way above the people they involved in such a situation.

    Troy we thank you for bringing to the forefront these type situations so that hopefully ALL involved in this industry on any level will begin to do THEIR OWN due diligence and learn BEFORE they become involved with such unsavory characters. This is NOT to say that in the beginning all people are the same but to reiterate that MONEY in and of itself has an 'addiction' that overcomes some while it never meets others!

    Semper Fi Troy,


  16. Troy,

    Another great report. You do a real service to the industry by calling it as you see it, pointing out the highlights and lowlights, and by not being a "shill".

    Chalk it up to my being naive about these types of inside-dealings in the biz, but this story is surprising and not surprising at the same time.

    – Surprising in that it just seems to go against the grain of what networking, direct sales, MLM is supposed to be about. It feels too "corporate", not grass-roots enough to be true to the spirit of the business.

    – Not surprising since we're dealing with people, meaning things inevitable go "goofy" from time to time. Egos, wallets, ambition, judgement (good or bad): they enter the picture, and things can be volatile. Unfortunately, as you reference in a reply to a different comment, it does smack somewhat of Wall Street and corporate America in their worst ways. As with those examples, it's the man-on-the-street that ends up holding the bag.

    I trust that many will learn some lessons from this situation, and be even more vigilant in the future.

    Thanks for what you continue to do.



  17. Troy,

    Regarding this comment:

    "Since ViSalus is owned by a publicly traded company. If the company itself has paid anyone it would show up in the quarterly and annual financial statements."

    Not sure this is correct. It could be listed as a one time charge or as professional services fee that many companies post in their quarterly reports without disclosing who all it went to.

  18. LC,

    I have yet to see "greed" from other party as part of the deal. Capitalism, yes, but not greed.

    1. Nick wanted to build a new organization.
    2. Rob was looking for a fresh home for himself and his team.
    3. They ink a deal and people (not just Nick & Rob) start to lose weight and make money.
    4. Rob for reasons unknown seems to have breached the Agreement.
    5. Nick goes public.

    Nothing here speaks of greed. I do see emotions running high on bot sides, and if everyone would have been transparent and authentic up front, then this situation may not have happened. However, since the deal was cut in private and not everyone involved even knew the arraignments, we now have once again, a split between business partners.

    Without a doubt greed very well play into this. But based on the facts as I have reported them, I just do not see greed.

  19. Dr. Alexander,

    Excellent comment and great points! I believe that if we all work together no matter what company we market for, we can hold each other accountable and raise the standards in our great profession.

  20. J Williams,

    Thank you for the kind words. I love this profession, and we all just need to work closely together to hold each other accountable. Both at corporate and in the field. Together we can all win and win big.

  21. The good news? Robert's leaders knew a great company when they found one and chose to stay to build a legacy for their families instead of following him like lemmings.

    The most recent photos of Nick in Texas with rooms packed with hundreds – they were filled by the leaders that chose to stick their ground.

    And to clarify, because some seem to miss a major point – VISALUS doesn't make deals… this was an independent distributor's business and choice to cut a deal.

    In the end, it works out as a major plus for those who were swept into ViSalus. They all got a very sweet deal indeed, if they just put their head down and work it, they are in great hands!

  22. Hey Troy fellow south floridian and network marketeer here. I'm actually one of the few distributors from TOPGUN that actually stay with Evolv and broke away from Mr. Dean before the big move to Visalus. I've been watching you now for a little more than a year now. Love your unbiased and fair commentary. Good to see there's still stand-up guys in the world who aren't afraid to tell it like it is. Back in the fall of last year when Rob first told us about the move to Vi, I was uneasy about the entire situation and little information was being divulged as to why. It just didn't feel right and didn't make sense to me so I did what now seems to have been a great move by staying put. I have many TOPGUN friends that i've built relationships with over the years and I wish them all nothing but the best. I still and will always have an extreme amount of respect for Robert Dean and I will always credit him for exposing me to the industry. With that being said it saddens me to see whats happening. TOPGUN has been successful over the year because of the way they come together as a team with one common goal. It was like joining a big family and many of these people I still consider family. I've watched and studied Rob for over a decade, since the FreeNetwork days. It was all about the culture and the people in the beginning. Now that i'm on the outside and not the inside i'm wondering what kind of money did he not share with us when he moved from TFN to Noni, from Noni to Monavie, from Monavie to Evolv. Every time we made a major move it has always ended up costing us more than what we made in commissions. I can't say I never got anything out of the deal. I mean Robert Dean is know for taking the whole team out to eat and picking up the tab every time he visits a city. So he not all that tight with the wallet. But now after hearing how the team is hurting when Rob was given way over a quarter million to help the team, I don't know why many of my friends and family continue to follow him. I think one day Robert Dean will be a force in the industry but right now his reputation is severely damaged. And one thing I know from being in this industry over 10 years is that your reputation can make or break you in a big way. Yes this is business but its also a movement. We want to help people first and foremost and make some money along the way. At least thats my philosophy. You build the people, the people build the team, the team builds the company, the company builds the revenue. Rob got it twisted all of a sudden and i'm just glad i'm not over there in the muck of things. I got people calling me already defending him all over Facebook talking about he's a MVP like Lebron James and it's nothing wrong with paying the MVP the big bucks. Yeah that may be true but this is Network Marketing not Professional Basketball. If you get a big bag of money that you say is for the team make sure you are a man of your word and operate with integrity. What if Lebron James said he would split his signing bonus with D-wade and Chris Bosh and then reneged after he got the check??? Don't you think that would cause some problems on the court??? Anyway Rob disappoints me. And whats even more disappointing is the friends and family that still follow him thinking they are about to benefit from this move.

  23. Both parties are at fault as evidenced by the release of a confidential agreement. The question is who released the contract copy? Nick shouldn't act as if he is the picture of morality. There are many things wrong with this scenario and the primary one is the disregard of others. People get involved in this industry in hopes of having an opportunity to build something that they can get rewarded from for years to come. The residual income pitch is made weekly in companies around the world. It saddens me when anyone dishonor the genuine desire of self improvement…to provide additional income for their family….to try something different in hopes of finding a new career. In short, I am saddened by the dashing of hopes and dreams by scandalous acts committed by leaders and company officials. Their actions tarnish this industry and set us back. In my mind Nick tried to take a short cut to success only to discover a detour sign. He should pick himself up, stop whinning and go to work with the understanding that the road to success runs right through the gutter. It's his choice if he get's out of the car or not. However, if he decides to get out of the car, don't be a whimp and cry about the dirt on his pants and shoes.

  24. Tsnyder,

    Disagreement is healthy and a good thing among friends. πŸ™‚

    I understand where you are coming from on "outside investors" My point is that nowhere does Nick ever talk about outside investors. He just states "he may have investors." This leads my to the conclusion, all parties were in some way insiders. Just a personal conclusion, and you may very well be correct.

    I was not trying to be obtuse. More than one in the last 34 years, I have seen founders/partners/officers leave corporate and take a top spot held in the compensation plan for the specific purpose. I should have explained more on the direction of my thought.

    I'm still not convinced "greed" plays a role. But I do understand where you are coming from, and your conclusion of greed does hold merit.

    I can see where if you have not watched the first video, you would see this as slanted. And to a certain agree you are correct. The slant is in effect leaders, Robert or others who jump from company to company because of some new backroom deal.

    In Robert's case he has lead him original team from Noni to MonaVie, to Evolv, To ViSalus to Limu in less than 24 months. Along the way the bodies of hurt and dead distributors have grown larger and larger. Without a doubt there have been some success stories, where leaders have stayed with a former company, or split away to form their own team identity.

    So, since this was about Robert and Top Gun specifically, I can surely see how it looks slanted. And the message is very slanted… Full disclosure is always best! Transparent and authentic leaders is what folks are looking for.

    Thank you again for your leadership and the value you add here at the HelpDesk.

  25. Camaron,

    It is good to hear from you. Been way too long! Thank you for stopping by and adding value to this community.

  26. Dr. Alexander,

    Thank you for stopping by and adding value to this community.

    Since ViSalus is owned by a publicly traded company. If the company itself has paid anyone it would show up in the quarterly and annual financial statements.

    And, part of the problem is the fact rumors and not facts get started on the streets.

    What I find interesting is the lack he seemly lack of concern on the ethics issue. When two parties enter into a binding contract, shouldn't both parties abide by the agreement in place until the end of the agreement?

    Maybe is this lack of concern over ones reputation which is causing all the issues. If folks will not keep their commitments in legal binding agreements, I guess we should not be concerned when they don't keep their word to us either.

    Based on your statement "It happens in business and life everyday" I assume you just accept this as "acceptable business/life practice" and are willing to live with it, instead of holding people to a higher standard?

    Where does this leave one's team? How can they continue to trust any leader who does not keep his/her word?

  27. The word on the street is ViSalus has paid others as much as a million dollars to leave one company and join their team in an effort to build their company. In short…he tried something and it didn't work. It happens in business and life everyday. He just moved from pampers to pull-ups.

  28. WOWEE!!! Thanks Mr. Dooley….
    This is why I peruse your website on almost a daily basis…and I have sent hundreds of folks here.

    My thoughts:
    Can’t argue with that paperwork….
    Can’t argue with help to move an organization.
    BUT being raised in the country …I have only one question…

    How many times can Dean milk that cow??
    Ha Ha Ha Ha…

  29. Great Post Troy!

    Nick Sarnicola is a class act and one of the best builders that I have had the honor of meetingt! There isn't a greedy bone in his body! And from what I know about he and Ash, they are the most committed servant leaders in the industry! Keep your head up brother and keep doing what you do best!

  30. Great post Troy!

    Nick Sarnicola is a class act and one of the hardest working builders that I have ever met! There isn't a greedy bone in his body!! He has wisdom beyond his years and I consider him a very good friend! Keep doing what you do Nick and Ash!

  31. Pingback: Tweets that mention Breaking MLM News: ViSalus Sciences Co-Founder Nick Sarnicola Breaks The Silence Surrounding Robert Dean’s Private Money Deals : MLM Help Desk Home Of The Maverick Leader – Troy Dooly --
  32. Perhaps we have different definitions for certain terminology. When I say outside investors I mean people outside the immediate deal. People who probably aren't in the line of sponsorship. Perhaps I'm wrong on that but that was the impression i got.

    As for buying his way to the top… come on… don't be deliberately obtuse. Yes, he could have just activated a top spot but he didn't. He gave the appearance of building a team like anyone else but chose, instead, to buy some top producers. It blew up in his face. The only victims here (if there are any at all) are the investors. Perhaps they'll be paid back some day. That would be a good thing!

    I think the greed issue is obvious… both of them entered into this deal for one reason… to make more money faster than they otherwise would have had they built a business doing the things both of them most likely advocate others do. I doubt buying producers is part of their new associate training webinars.

    The sell out… in my opinion… was that your report is slanted very much toward Rob being the duplicitous scoundrel he is while… again… in my opinion… speaking of Nick in somewhat gentler tones, shall we say. I didn't see the original video on the subject so maybe you were harder on him there. I just thought the whole Southern Boy whose word means something was a little much for a guy who was obviously circumventing everything most of us know and believe about building a business in network marketing.

    In any case… I appreciate the good work you do. We just happen to disagree on this one.


  33. Tsnyder,

    As always thanks for taking time to stop by and comment. You always add value to the community.

    I am not completely sure how you come to the conclusion "I sold out". If you take time to review my original post on this very subject a few days ago, and review what I state in this video, my stance has not changed at all.

    This specific post does not give Nick a pass at all. I make it very clear, there should never be any backdoor deals. All deals if they are going to be made should be made publicly.

    Now I am not sure where "greed" came into this. At no time have I implied anyone was greedy. From talking to people inside and outside of this specific situation, no one feels it has anything to do with greed.

    I have been watching Nick and his partners for years. And early in the last decade supported many of their team at TPN. At no time have I seen any of them act greedy.

    At no time have I implied Nick was innocent of anything. Now as for "buying his way to the top" He is one of 3 partners who founded the company. He wants to leave corporate and go into the field. What's there to buy? He could have just activated a top spot above everyone else and started playing.
    And, how did you come to the conclusion there were "outside investors" Investors yes, but I doubt if they are outsiders. Most investors in direct selling are all insiders who fully understand the risks at the top levels, which is why they are willing to cut deals in the first place.

    By the way, using OPM (Other Peoples Money) to build any form of business is not only acceptable it is the main way all business is built long term. Look at Wall Street, the banking system and the mortgage industry as examples.

    I fully understand where you are coming from on this specific issue, but if it is standard business practice in Corporate America, and Corporate America is now investing heavily in direct selling, I have a feeling this is just the tip of the iceberg.

    Again, thank you for stopping by you always add value.

    I still don't understand the sell out πŸ™‚

    Living An Epic Adventure,


  34. So said when someone puts profits before people. What he did is criminal. Scary that people would follow him!

  35. Troy,

    You always do an Amazing job of exposing the facts my friend!

    The record definitely needed to be set straight. I feel for his team and his leaders… but I'm glad that some of his leaders have taken a stand. They don't NEED Robert to be successful!

    I truly believe that his leaders that have indeed taken a stand will be household names in this industry because they've made that simple decision to disassociate themselves from Mr. Dean.

    Thanks for sharing this Troy.

    – Yo

  36. Troy…

    If I'm being totally honest with you today I have to say it's my opinion that you "sold out" on this one… with regard to Nick's involvement in the deal.

    There is nothing innocent about what Nick did. OK… so he wanted to get out of corporate and go build a team in the field again. Uh huh. It looks very much to me like he wanted to buy his way to the top but either didn't have the money or didn't want to risk his own… so he convinced outside investors to put their money on the line.

    What we have here is two guys playing the same game… greed… for their own purposes. Nick's problem is he was playing with someone else's money. There is nothing noble about that.

  37. WOW!! Great video Troy!! I caught wind of this going down a few weeks back. I had actually posted it on my wall as the information had come from several very credible sources within the TopGun Team. I am sorry to hear that he has moved again. As for his team members, well I wish you all the best of luck wherever you are. I personally know some that have stayed at Evolv, and others that will stay at Visalus. Some have already gone to other companies before. Keep following your dreams!!! Cheers!!

  38. Troy,

    Wow, Kudos to you and Nick for sharing this Robert Dean NONSENSE with everyone. I think it should be illegal, and companies should refrain from this practice entirely!! Thank you for being one who holds no punches, keep up the great work!!

  39. "This hurts his people."

    Those words alone is what these "performance packages" don't take into account.

    Awesome commentary Mr. Dooly.

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