An unidentified company is looking to lure members of the Seattle area wireless service provider Solavei this holiday season. And guess what? The Solavei folks don’t like the blatant recruiting effort one bit.
How do we know this?
Yesterday, I got a random “robocall” on my cell phone. I didn’t pick up, and I am glad I did not, since the message mistakenly identified me as somehow being associated with Solavei. (I’ve written about half a dozen stories on the controversial company since it came on the scene this past summer, but I have no business affiliation with them).
Nonetheless, I must have landed on some list, because here’s what the message said:
“Hey, Solavei reps, we want to help you have massive success. Were you aware that for as little as $49 a month you can literally get all of your most common household bills paid by our company and make more money now, and without having to switch people over to a different carrier or a different phone. Don’t be limited. We offer the best cellular carriers, Internet, discount energy, and so much more. Plus, we are sharing our enrollments with all of you throughout the holidays.”
It then offered a phone number for me to call, which I did. That resulted in a similar marketing message, and the chance to leave my phone number. (I did, but have not heard back).
At first listen, I thought Solavei was somehow behind the call, since that was the only company name I heard. (GeekWire’s Taylor Soper, who also received the robocall and picked it up on his mobile, also jumped to this conclusion).
However, Jason Genthner, a spokesman for Solavei, said that they are “absolutely not” involved with this effort. He noted that “telemarketing is specifically prohibited in the terms and conditions of our membership.”
In fact, several members of the Solavei management team also received the robocalls this weekend. And they are none too pleased.
“The message is actually attempting to lure Solavei members to a competing offer because we only offer mobile service and the message specifically talks about mobile service and energy along with other household services,” said Genther. “We believe the company responsible for the robocall activity is using Internet trolling to identify phone numbers of individuals with some Solavei association.”
Asked if they had identified the company making the calls, Genther would only say that they are continuing to investigate the matter.
“We intend to pursue all appropriate actions against the parties responsible,” he said.
Solavei has come on the scene in a big way since launching a $49 per month wireless service offering in September, one that rewards customers with cash for signing up friends, family members or co-workers.
Led by former Former Congressman Rick White and former Motricity CEO Ryan Wuerch and backed by former AOL CEO Jonathan Miller, Amazon.com vice president David Limp and others, the company said last month that more than 65,000 people have signed up for the wireless service since its debut.
Now, it appears, some other company wants a piece of their multilevel marketing action. We’ll update this post as we learn more.