Dhaka — The E-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (E-CAB) has taken the initiative to suspend the membership of Evaly.com for allegedly cheating customers and merchants through illegal multilevel marketing (MLM) business under the guise of e-commerce business.
E-Cab Vice President Mohammad Shahab said that a letter has been sent to Evaly managing director Mohammad Russell asking why the membership should not be suspended following Bangladesh Bank’s inspection report, Ministry of Commerce, Consumer Protection Department, various buyers and merchants complaints.
He said, ‘I have sent a letter by registered mail on Wednesday. Evaly has been asked to respond within seven working days of receiving the letter. The show cause letter was sent in accordance with Article 9 (d) of the constitution of e-Cab to suspend the membership of Evaly.
The letter alleges embezzlement of customers’ money in the name of e-commerce business, various allegations received from merchants, various irregularities mentioned in the Bangladesh Bank (BB) inspection report, and allegations of creating irregularities and chaos in the potential e-commerce sector.
Apart from Evaly, e-Cab has also sent showcase letters to Glitter’s RSD World, Green Bangla E-Commerce Limited, Annex World Wide Limited, Amar Bazar Limited, Excellent World Agro Food and Consumers Limited.
It is learned that preparations are underway to send show-cause letters to several other companies.
E-CAB officials said the letter was issued as there was a provision in the organisation’s constitution to seek an explanation before suspending or cancelling membership.
Sahab Uddin said that show cause letters are being sent to all the 10 companies that have been suspended by banks. The membership of MLM-based companies will be suspended mainly to exploit the potential of the e-commerce sector and increase customer confidence.
A senior e-Cab official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said, “The way some companies, including Evaly, are taking money from new customers and giving old customers products or refunds is by no means an e-commerce business.”
He said, ‘ Evaly did not pay Tk215 crore in advance from the customers, while it brought the remaining Tk190 crore from the merchants. Merchants are not supposed to be in arrears even after taking the advance money from customers. Now they can’t pay the debts of the customer or the merchant. So where did all this money go? ‘
Due to such activities of various companies, consumers’ confidence in the e-commerce sector has decreased. Those who are doing business according to the rules are also suffering.
Many members of e-Cab have also lodged complaints against the companies with the president-general secretary of the organisation. Therefore, in order to protect the image of the company, the membership of the member companies doing business in the MLM system will be suspended and later cancelled.
E-Cab has about 1,100 members, of which 14 are allegedly operating MLM businesses in the name of e-commerce.
Among them, Evaly’s bank account information is with Bangladesh Bank. Bangladesh Bank has summoned the bank accounts of 11 more companies – Alesha Mart, Dhamaka Shop, Sirajganj Shop, Aladin’s Lamp, Boom Boom, Adian Mart, Needs, Cucom, Dalal Plus, Orange and Bajaj Collection.
Following the publication of The Business Standard News on 22 June on the information of Bangladesh Bank’s inspection report on Evaly, various private sector banks including BRAC Bank, Bank Asia, Evali, Alesha Mart, Dhamaka Shop, Sirajganj Shop, Aladin’s Lamp, Boom Boom, Adian Mart, Needs, Q&A With this, transactions in debit, credit and prepaid cards have been suspended.
On the other hand, various popular brands, including Trendz, Rang Bangladesh, Artisan Outfitters, Fit Elegance and Rio International, have announced that they have stopped accepting gift vouchers from Evaly due to non-payment of dues after selling products in gift vouchers.