This has been a great week inside the network marketing community. From distributors reaching new pin levels, to companies sharing their financials for the 4th Quarter. And we have included a great article from the DSA on how the impact of distributor’s success stories.
As direct selling companies of all shapes and sizes work around the clock to connect with and educate the general public about the sales model, many have found that their most effective resource originates not from the corporate office, but rather, in the field.
Each and every day, 15.6 million men and women across America are impacted by their personal direct selling businesses. Whether an individual steps into the direct selling realm for access to discounted products, to make friends and meet new people, for supplemental income or for a full-time opportunity, he or she stands as an on-the-ground representative of the business model at work. That said, as companies look to combat misinformation circulated in the media about direct selling, many have found that the best—and most cost-efficient—way to do so is by providing avenues through which distributors can share their success stories. (read on)
Last month the Internal Revenue Service announced a simplified option that many owners of home-based businesses and some home-based workers may use to figure their deductions for the business use of their homes. In tax year 2010, the most recent year for which figures are available, nearly 3.4 million taxpayers claimed deductions for business use of a home (commonly referred to as the home office deduction). The new optional deduction, capped at $1,500 per year based on $5 per square foot for up to 300 square feet, will reduce the paperwork and record-keeping burden on small businesses by an estimated 1.6 million hours annually.
The new option provides eligible taxpayers with an easier path to claiming the home office deduction. Currently, taxpayers are generally required to fill out a 43-line form (Form 8829), often with complex calculations of allocated expenses, depreciation and carryovers of unused deductions. Taxpayers claiming the optional deduction will complete a significantly simplified form. The new simplified option is available starting with the 2013 return most taxpayers file early in 2014. Further details on the new option can be found in Revenue Procedure 2013-13, which is effective for taxable years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2013.
Network Marketing Company News
Alticor, Amway’s parent company, reported global sales of $11.3 billion for 2012, compared with 2011 sales of $10.9 billion. This is the seventh consecutive year of growth for the company, with sales increases 12 out of the past 13 years. View the news release online.
Amway China plans to build 1,000 school kitchens as part of the Spring Sprout Project and in partnership with the China National Committee for the Care of Children. In an effort to provide poverty-stricken children with balanced and nutritional meals, the project will establish Spring Sprout Kitchens and train kitchen administrations for boarding schools in central and western China.
In other Amway news, Amway India is planning to build a manufacturing facility at Nilakottai in southern Tamil Nadu.
Avon has recruited Los Angeles Clippers basketball player Chris Paul as the new face of its men’s fragrance, Untouchable.
Jamberry Nails recently announced it will continue its relationship with the Autism Society as an official Autism Society Supporter. In less than a year of working together Jamberry Nails has already given more than $8,000 to the Society.
LifeVantage, in collaboration with its independent distributors, has made a donation to Blessings in a Backpack that will provide more than 110,000 meals to children in need in the U.S. The fundraising effort took place in conjunction with LifeVantage’s quarterly training event held in San Antonio, Texas, in January.
Mary Kay joined forces with the Georgia Coalition Against Domestic Violence for the Stop Violence Against Women Day on Jan. 31, 2013. The 14th annual event held at the Georgia State Capitol building gave participants an opportunity to advocate for laws and policies that enhance safety and promote justice for domestic violence survivors. A longtime supporter of domestic violence awareness, Mary Kay has an ongoing commitment to lobbying for good and working to prevent and end domestic violence.
Nu Skin announced its fourth-quarter 2012 financial results with revenue of $588.2 million, a 19 percent improvement over the prior-year period. The company reported full-year 2012 revenue of $2.17 billion, a 24 percent year-over-year improvement. Annual revenue was negatively impacted 1 percent by foreign currency fluctuations.
Fourth-quarter revenue in North Asia was $250.2 million, compared to $204.3 million for the same period in 2011. Japan local-currency revenue improved 26 percent while South Korea experienced local-currency revenue growth of 19 percent. The number of sales leaders in the region was up 14 percent while the number of actives improved 3 percent.
In Greater China, fourth-quarter revenue increased 28 percent to $141.7 million, compared to $110.6 million in the prior-year period. The sales leader count in the region improved 57 percent, while the number of actives increased 51 percent compared to the prior year. Revenue in South Asia/Pacific was $63.5 million, a 3 percent decline compared to the prior year.
The region’s fourth-quarter sales leaders declined 11 percent while actives decreased 1 percent compared to the same period in 2011. Revenue in the Americas improved 4 percent to $80.1 million, compared to $76.9 million in the prior-year period. Sales in the U.S. increased 18 percent when excluding $12.5 million of convention sales to non-U.S. distributors in the fourth quarter of 2011. The number of sales leaders improved 19 percent while the number of actives decreased 1 percent compared to the prior year. Revenue in Europe was $52.8 million, a 38 percent improvement over the prior-year period. Sales leaders and actives in Europe increased 21 and 9 percent, respectively, compared to the prior year. View the full press release online.
Thirty-One Gifts recently announced its philanthropic initiative, Thirty-One Gives, has partnered with Girl Talk. Girl Talk is a peer-to-peer mentoring program for middle school girls, whose curriculum is tied to developing self-esteem and leadership through community service. Thirty-One Gives and Girl Talk’s five-year goal is to reach 100,000 girls and for the middle school girls to donate 1 million community service hours. Thirty-One Gives will make a monetary donation of $150,000 and a product donation of $50,000 to Girl Talk. The funds will be used for Girl Talk chapter development and additional summer camps, which Girl Talk hosts for middle school girls.
USANA announced financial results for its fiscal fourth quarter and full year, ended Dec. 29, 2012. Net sales for the fourth quarter of 2012 increased by 15.5 percent to $168.5 million, compared with $145.9 million in the prior-year period. The growth in net sales was driven by increases in both the company’s Asia Pacific and North America/Europe regions.
Favorable changes in currency exchange rates contributed approximately $3 million to the top line for the quarter. Net earnings for the fourth quarter increased to $18.4 million, an improvement of 40.2 percent, compared with the prior-year period. This increase was due primarily to higher net sales and lower relative associate incentive expense for the quarter, and was partially offset by lower gross margins. Net sales in the Asia Pacific region increased by 21.3 percent to $107.8 million, compared with $88.9 million for the fourth quarter of the prior year.
This improvement was due to strong sales growth in Southeast Asia/Pacific and Greater China. This sales growth resulted from a 17.4 percent increase in the number of active associates in Asia Pacific, as well as price increases in certain markets that were implemented during the first quarter of the year. Active associate growth was again driven by double-digit growth in Southeast Asia/Pacific and Greater China and, to a lesser extent, the addition of the Thailand market to the region.
During the fourth quarter of 2012, net sales in the North America/Europe region increased by 6.4 percent to $60.7 million, compared with $57.1 million in the prior-year period. The number of active associates in North America/Europe was essentially flat compared with the fourth quarter of 2011. For the year ended Dec. 29, 2012, net sales increased by 11.5 percent to $648.7 million, compared with $581.9 million in the prior year. Net sales growth was driven by increases in both Asia Pacific and North America/Europe regions. View the full press release online.