No money. Struggling career. Betrayal. False story. Harassment. Life is full of tough challenges—many of them unexpected—and many of them can even be difficult to overcome. The young entrepreneurs, Monir Islam and Moyn Islam from a humble working-class community in the UK, have tackled some of these lives’ most difficult circumstances.
Early on, Monir and Moyn—like any other commoner—did the odd jobs, lived the hard life to later build a career in the network marketing industry. Life isn’t always perfect, but, for the youngsters, entrepreneurship was everything that they needed. It simply made sense because as networkers, there’s always an opportunity to meet different people, build a network and work for something they’re passionate about in their career. However, with the steady rise of cryptocurrency around 2015, Monir and Moyn, just like everyone else at that time, got introduced to this new investment opportunity through some friends.
The two brothers who worked their fingers to the bone, climbed every step of hurdles to make a decent living, invested their hard-earned money and ended up losing everything. All it took was one scam, one truth, one biased news article, and OneCoin—the infamous cryptocurrency firm.
In 2016, almost two million people from across the world were involved with OneCoin, which was poised as the next biggest digital currency phenomenon after Bitcoin. A company with such unmeasurable credibility, including audit documents on cryptocurrency, the mining firm, banking with big banks, and OneCoin Mastercard, events at ‘The Economists Fourth EU Summit’ in the presence of world leaders’ and whatnot. Their vision was to become better than Bitcoin—ideally to bank the unbanked. Trusting that they could be part of a revolutionary movement in the FinTech industry, Monir and Moyn made their meagre investment.
Later they introduced two other people from their close circle. Then those two introduced five more people who also wanted to invest in OneCoin. These five individuals were very successful with years of experience in investing in multiple businesses. Monir and Moyn didn’t want them to invest based on the information they had at that point.
For the five people to make an informed decision about the investment, they wanted to meet the company’s founders. This meeting was set up during an event at Budapest, where top leaders worldwide came together. It was a chance for the brothers as well to meet the heads. After a private meeting with the founders, those five people believed in the company’s vision and decided to proceed with their investment. They were pivotal in bringing about 700 people in the team.
Things were perfectly calm, just as before the storm, one would say.
In less than a year after investing in OneCoin, the young brothers saw a red flag, when the company decided to go for Initial Public Offering (IPO) instead of the coins which were initially promised to millions. Some serious questions were raised, but nobody from the company provided an answer.
Monir and Moyn were left with two choices—to stay silent or voice out to at least stop one more person from being scammed—they pursued the latter simply because it was the right thing to do.
They say, money directly attributes to the power that one can own. And it’s right as to what happened to the brothers then. In 2017, Monir and Moyn made a public statement through a Facebook video about their experience with OneCoin and exiting the company. But in less than two hours after the video went online, they received threats from very powerful people who claimed to be working for the company, demanding to take down the video. They did so and continued to remain silent, fearing the worst for their families.
What ensued next dragged the brothers to the lowest points in their life; when an individual from one big media agency in the UK wrote a biased and misinformed news story about their exit from the infamous company.
“Flashy Islam brothers Moyn and Monir heavily promoted get-rich-quick scheme OneCoin – now they’ve abandoned it,” said one news article.
“Watch out: OneCoin promoters Moyn and Monir Islam are promoting a new get-rich-scheme,” said another news article.
One of the media outlets even used clickbait titles with words like “Islam Brothers,” “Frauds” linked to one of the biggest scams in history. Moyn and Monir became a victim of prejudice that connoted phobia associated with their names. The news incorrectly portrayed them as co-conspirators and even co-founders of OneCoin while they were just like any other investors who got scammed.
A dodgy scheme, which then believed to be the real deal, preyed on innocent investors. Moyn and Monir were merely used as bait and sacrificed when the time came. As a consequence, they endured much hatred, even harassment from people who misunderstood them as perpetrators of the scam. These are people who never knew Monir and Moyn but continued to recirculate those news articles up until today.
The news article claimed they abandoned 26,000 people. This number was exaggerated owing to lack of knowledge on how the multilevel marketing (MLM) structure works.
To give it a brief understanding, every MLM model comes with a unique Compensation plan structure which can be complex. We’ve got an upline and a downline. A downline refers to the network members, aka distributors who have joined the organization after your enrollment. An upline refers to the person who recruited you into the MLM company alongside people in the same line in the levels above you.
In the case of Monir and Moyn, they recruited only two people, who then recruited five and that later multiplied into a team of 700 people. What the media depicted with the number of 26,000 people was the spillover from the overall upline and downline structure. When the brothers decided to exit the company, they rightly so informed their team about what was going on. Yet some of them still continued to promote the brand, stayed in the company.
The question remains, how come Monir and Moyn, just two individuals with only a downline of 700 people were singled out in receiving all kinds of hatred? How come the people from Europe and the UK who are heavy promoters of OneCoin, who had teams of tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands of people in their downline, yet nobody talks about them? How come over 3 million people joined the company after Moyn and Monir exited, and continues to carry on today? While these questions remain unanswered, it’s incredible to see how these two hard-working brothers came through so many obstacles.
Sometimes giving up is the easiest thing to do. But Monir and Moyn transformed their bad experiences into good lessons for the greater good of the future. They slowly but steadily got back on their feet with the right choice of investments in multiple business ventures. Being entrepreneurs is what they do best.
Entrepreneurs hold power to change the world for better, on top of it, they continue their journey in network marketing for the love of it.
With the digital transformations overtaking the world, Monir Islam and Moyn Islam have built multiple online platforms to empower people from all walks of life. It’s interesting to see that they’ve expanded their innovations across various industries.
Here are some of the businesses they have founded and running successfully:
- A travel platform which goes beyond just booking a holiday. It allows people to experience the world with up to 70% discount compared to any public aggregator. The platform holds 1.2 million hotels and partnered with some of the biggest brands in flights, cruises and VIP airport lounges as well as with over 50,000+ car rental locations from around the world. Some of the competitors of their travel platform are Booking.com and Expedia.
- An e-learning platform which brings a world of learning resources and instructions for people to upgrade their skills as well as lives in meaningful ways. The platform is a new-age catalyst that suits not just working professionals but also for students in schools and universities.
- A live streaming platform that can facilitate up to 1 million users concurrently. It offers various content available in multiple languages as well as geolocated to its user’s region or country. This platform is created with a vision to educate and empower people from falling prey to scams and empower them with the right information.
These young entrepreneurs have come a long way. The journey through various network marketing companies made them realize that there are loopholes in the industry which need fixing. So, they’ve created a whole new digital ecosystem by applying the right network marketing models that enable hundreds and thousands of independent business owners to achieve success from a smartphone. The knowledge they obtained through hardship is now translated into simple digital tools so others can have it easy. Today, their work of passion has led to creating a network marketing company—a home for not just themselves but thousands of people around the world
When asked about what’s the only thing they have to say about their past, “We were victims like so many other people. But we acknowledge our mistake. We learned a huge lesson for which we paid a huge price. But we will continue to move forward with a goal to help prevent others from making the same mistakes we did,” said Monir and Moyn.
The mistakes, struggles and regrets from the past shouldn’t define the power we hold to shape the present and future. Even good people make bad choices. It doesn’t mean they are bad; it only means they are human. There will always be people who will make it their mission to bring others down. As they say, haters will forever hate. They will continue to spread the wrong story to stop the ones who set out to do something significant in life. Sadly, receiving negativity is part of being successful. Monir and Moyn are grown to be ‘okay’ with it, as they focus on positivity.
After overcoming a great deal of barriers, Monir and Moyn’s past stands as a testimonial for people who pursue entrepreneurship to believe in themselves, stay true to their intentions, be okay with negativity and seek success relentlessly. Today, they are set out to make a difference in this world by remaining focused on the people and things that matter for the greater good.