Why Did Ava Anderson Close?

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Did you hear the news, Ava Anderson Non Toxic closed?  Well, technically, they are transitioning into a new brand, and Ava has left the company she created.

 

I’m so heart broken for Ava and all the distributors.  I’ve had so much respect for Ava, she started making the products when she was only 14 and launched Ava Anderson Non Toxic (AANT) in her 20s!   I totally agree with her mission and think she’s been an admirable business woman.

Why did Ava Anderson Close?

According to the company website, they are closing for a couple of reasons.  In addition to feeling bullied, both online and in person, the family revealed that there was an issue with their suppliers:

Second, we have recently learned that several of our suppliers, who professed to have our same mission of providing safe, organic and natural personal care products, have violated our contractual agreements, by including some of the ingredients, found on all store shelves, that we have passionately educated and even lobbied against, in several of our 80+ products. We created this line to share an important health message and are devastated to have discovered this.”

So, some of the ingredients she was warning people about ended up in their products?  How awful!  I can only imagine how betrayed she must feel!

In an article from EcoFriendlyMamaUSA, third party analysis of Ava’s dish soap revealed that it contained ingredients not listed on the label, and contained none of the organic plant-based oils listed on the label.   This issue was addressed by the company, and they brought production of the dish soap in-house.   But how many bottles of the wrong formula were sold, to people assuming it was what was listed on the label?

I don’t think that Ava was misrepresenting the products.  The manufacturers were lying to her, and broke their contract.   But if I were an Ava customer I would be furious right now!  I mean, if I had bought their baby line months ago, before Ava were made aware of the problems, I wouldn’t know if it was actually safe to use on my kids!  Ingredients in many baby shampoos have been shown to emit formaldehyde and 1,4 dioxane.. both are known carcinogens.  Who knows what the suppliers in question were actually putting in the products!

As bad as I feel for the customers, I think the people who are going to be most affected by this are the consultants.  AANT is transitioning into a new company.  It appears that the management team is staying intact, and will be re-opening with a new name and packaging.   That’s fantastic news for the consultants, as many things will likely stay the same, but the company will likely struggle financially with this news coming to light.  I know that if I were a customer, I would not make any purchases until everything was assured to have gone through third party testing, and I read all the ingredient labels.  I imagine that’s how most people feel, and that could cause a steep drop in sales, even if it’s only temporary.  If I were an Ava Consultant, I would be very concerned about a possible dramatic change in the compensation plan to help compensate for any loss.

While direct sales is an excellent way for Moms and Dads to stay home with their kids, it can also be very risky.  A number of things you can’t control could happen.  You never know if the person who started a company will decide to move onto something else, or if a company has undisclosed financial issues.   Direct Sales companies open and close every day, with new ones popping up all the time, as the “next big thing”.

As a work at home Mom, in direct sales, this news of AANT has me worried for the Ava Consultants.  I’ve been through two really bad transitions with companies.  With the first one, they were in financial trouble and no one knew.  The company was 12 years old, so it seemed like they had been around long enough to be stable, but they failed to tell us what was really going on.  Suddenly they stopped paying bonuses.  It was financially devastating.   They tried to merge with another business but I don’t think it worked out and eventually they closed.

With the other company, things were great in the beginning and then after about 6 months with them the compensation plan changed dramatically.  I went from earning several hundred a month to just SEVENTEEN DOLLARS!  I figured I just needed to figure out how to max out the new comp plan and then everything would be fine.  A few months later it changed again.  Since I’d already been through one company’s financial collapse, I didn’t want to stick around and go through it again!  Frequent comp plan changes are a sign that the company is in trouble, unless those changes are putting more money in your pocket, of course.

It is my hope that the Ava reps will watch their compensation plan and their checks, and go look for a more stable company if there are any red flags.  When a company is transitioning, either by just rebranding, or merging with another company, there could be a financial impact and loss of trust with the Customers and Distributors.  My hope is that this transition will be a smooth one for everyone involved.

Direct Sales, while the best way to stay at home with kids and earn a great income, is also somewhat risky.  As company reps, we never really know what is going on at the highest level.  When searching for a company to work with, it is important to look for one that is transparent with their numbers, conducts 3rd party testing on their products, and has strict quality control on their ingredients.  Patents are great too, because you know the products are special and no one can copy them.  Patents also ensure that a product has legitimacy that deserves to be recognized.

I am grateful to be with a company that matches both my need for quality health products & green living, and also fits the profile of a stable business.  Heck, even the compensation plan is patented!  I am hopeful the transition is smooth for the AANT Consultants, but I’m glad I don’t have to go through it again.

 

“Live Long And Prosper”
Rebecca

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