China barista training scam

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China barista training scam

Postby Andrew Hetzel on Thu Nov 05, 2009 4:40 pm

We received the inquiry below on 10/15 and have been casually corresponding with them over the past couple of weeks.

They are sophisticated and strangely seem to have an understanding of reasonable training requirements in our industry; however, you will notice that the company's website was established only 2 days prior to their first solicitation among other mistakes, namely inconsistencies with typical Chinese business practices.

I never got to the part where they ask me to send money, but suspect that it was just around the corner, per the US Commercial Service.

Xu Feng (xampit@xampit.com) on Thursday, October 15, 2009 at 00:08:37
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
COMPANY: China Magnificent Prosperity (XIAN) Industry & Trade Co., Ltd
CITY: Xian
ST: Shaanxi
COUNTRY: China
PH: +86-29-88039859
TRAINING: training_services

Dear Sirs and Madams,
Our Company is a Commercial Collective division rewarding corporative qualification in Xian. Now we have a training inquiry. Through the Internet we know you re Barista training center and can supply the assistance we need. We consult your company that we have a group of persons want to go to oversea to have Barista training.
The following cooperate items will be emailed to your Company. In order to negotiate it please calculates it seriously.
1. If you can accept this inquiry, please inform us how many person you can train each time?
2. How many days do you need to train per person?
3. How much do you need for each person (inclusive of eating, transportation and accommodation)? Please quote us price with EURO, Pounds or USD format.
We hope that if you can accept this inquiry, please inform us the Competitive Price, Facility Address, Contact Phone, Contact Person, Mobile Phone Number to our Company as soon as possible, in order to have a good decision-making, if there is another un-detailed question, we will solve further in the Contract and discuss face to face.
We are looking forward to have a successful cooperation!
Linkman: Xu Feng
Tel: +86-29-88039859
Fax: +86-29-88565935
Mobile: +86-15029211898
E-mail: xianxampit@yahoo.com
xampit@xampit.com
Andrew Hetzel
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Marshall on Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:08 pm

I reviewed their contract for a client. They actually did not ask for any money at all, but insisted the American come to China for signing and "notarization services." If it was a fraud, we assumed the real problems would start after my client arrived in China.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Marshall on Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:24 pm

I reviewed their contract for a client. They actually did not ask for any money at all, but insisted the American come to China for signing and "notarization services." If it was a fraud, we assumed the real problems would start after my client arrived in China.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Marshall on Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:26 pm

[accidental double post]
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Andrew Hetzel on Thu Nov 05, 2009 10:09 pm

I wonder how many proposals they "accepted." I know of at-least two.

That does explain how they knew what to ask for; probably cut up the first few proposals and used information to request similar services from others. Very smart.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Andrew Hetzel on Thu Nov 05, 2009 10:16 pm

Marshall wrote:I reviewed their contract for a client. They actually did not ask for any money at all, but insisted the American come to China for signing and "notarization services." If it was a fraud, we assumed the real problems would start after my client arrived in China.


By the way, in another pamphlet from the US Commerce Service:

U.S. Commercial Service clients have reported a recent increase in the number of unsolicited buyer requests from China. This article offers guidance to help firms avoid falling prey to these scams. Review the following checklist to see if some of these common themes apply to your situation.

• The Chinese company contacted you, unsolicited, via the web
• The Chinese company has "Import - Export" in their name
• They want to purchase an unusually large volume of goods
• They insist that your senior executive travel to China to sign the contract
• They request money prior to signing the contract to pay for a reception or for contract administrative fees.
• They have been in business for less than one year and/ or have very young ownership
• They can provide no verifiable references

If one or more of these characteristics look familiar, be suspicious and conduct due diligence on the Chinese entity. Your company should immediately be suspicious of requests by a Chinese entity to outlay any cash or payment in advance of reaching an agreement. Requests for sharing notarization fees or other contract administration costs, gifts, hosting of banquets are just some of the ways in which fees are solicited.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Klaus on Mon Nov 09, 2009 1:34 pm

Yeah, we got that email too. Looked shady straight away somehow. Interesting to see it was so wide-spread.

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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Andrew Hetzel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 11:16 am

Interestingly, I've received a number of calls or messages from people in entirely unrelated industries who have received similar messages. When searching for the "China Magnificent Prosperity" they've found this message on Coffeed and been warned. Must be a pretty large scale operation.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby jpscoffee on Thu Nov 26, 2009 4:12 am

Fresh Cup magazine is going to do an article on it. I forwarded my information to my local and state representative's office, as well as the USCCC (United States China Chamber of Commerce) in hopes that no one gets fully duped.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Andrew Hetzel on Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:00 am

That's really cool, thanks! I felt so bad for a guy from an another industry training business that I spoke with yesterday; already had plans to fly over there and a lot riding on the "big deal." Better that he find out now than after he's held hostage in a jail cell in Xian or worse.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Gross Andrew on Mon Jan 04, 2010 6:23 pm

I have a roasting facility in southern China and am a qualified trainer in Australia. Am planning a coffee school in the near future.
:D
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby jpscoffee on Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:55 am

Have China visa, love to travel. :D
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby jpscoffee on Fri Oct 15, 2010 6:44 am

Bringing this post to the top again, I received another Chinese opportunity. This one looks even slicker. (almost looks like they researched their mistakes and fixed them trying to do better :roll: )

Watch out everyone.
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Jason Haeger on Tue Oct 26, 2010 3:30 pm

jpscoffee wrote:Bringing this post to the top again, I received another Chinese opportunity. This one looks even slicker. (almost looks like they researched their mistakes and fixed them trying to do better :roll: )

Watch out everyone.

Persistent little sammers, aren't they?
Image
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Re: China barista training scam

Postby Gross Andrew on Fri Nov 12, 2010 7:28 pm

:D
I am currently setting up a hospitality training school on Hainan Island. As a qualified trainer/assessor (Australian) and 30 year coffee history, I will be conducting the coffee course (amongst others).
Will be doing a few posts when we are closer to being operational.

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