By James A. Loyola

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a warning against another illegal investment scheme, this time by Scentko World Corporation and its purported parent, Brendahl Cruz Holdings, Inc.

sec new logo2 1 - SEC warns of another investment scam

In a statement, the SEC said the firms have been promising a 400 percent return from their “buy and earn” program.

The Commission’s Enforcement and Investor Protection Department noted that Scentko and Brendhal Cruz Holdings have not secured a secondary license to solicit investments from the public.

“In view thereof, the public is hereby advised to exercise caution in dealing with any individuals or group of persons soliciting investments or recruiting investors for and on behalf of Scentko and Brendahl Cruz Holdings,” read the advisory.

It added that, “the public is further advised not to invest or stop investing in any investment scheme being offered by Scentko and Brendahl Cruz Holdings.”

Under its investment scheme, Scentko entices the public to buy perfume and beauty products in exchange for “cash sales rewards” equivalent to 400 percent of the purchase price.

For instance, a member is promised a return of P20,000 for simply buying a package worth P5,000.

A member may receive the promised return in more or less than 30 days, without having to resell the products, depending on how soon Scentko can recruit new members. Accordingly, the company encourages its members to recruit.

Aside from the cash sales rewards, Scentko promises a referral fee equivalent to 10 percent of the amount invested by the new member.

Scentko and Brendahl Cruz Holdings are registered as corporations but the issuance of a certificate of incorporation only grants an entity a juridical personality and does not constitute an authority to engage in activities requiring a secondary license from the SEC, such as selling and offering securities.

Scentko and Brendahl Cruz Holdings add to at least 42 investment schemes earlier flagged by the SEC this year. The public is encouraged to report any information on their operations by calling (02) 818-6047.

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