Almost exactly a year ago, I wrote about iConsumer’s unique cash back portal. I wrote: Can iConsumer really deliver cash + shares? My interview with iConsumer’s founder. Unlike other cash back portals, iConsumer offers both cash back and stock shares when you make purchases through their portal. But, at the time, they didn’t have SEC approval, and you couldn’t buy or sell shares through brokerage firms. So, there was no way to know how much those shares were worth, if anything. Since then, my approach has been to only use the iConsumer portal if their cash back rate was as good or better than other cash back portals. Early on I used them a lot. Recently, not so much. They simply haven’t offered many outstanding deals for a while. That said, if it turns out that their stock is worth something, my calculation may change. Rather than looking solely at their cash back rate to see if they’re competitive, I would look at the combination of their cash back rate plus the value of their shares.
It appears now that iConsumer has taken a big step towards making the stock trade-able (and therefore potentially worth something). Today, iConsumer sent emails to their customers saying that shares have been transferred to IssuerDirect, iConsumer’s transfer agent. Rather than try to explain what this means, I’ve pasted the text of the email below.
Your shares of iConsumer stock have been issued, and the record keeping for those shares has been transferred to IssuerDirect, our transfer agent.
For the moment, there isn’t anything you should do.
The first week of February you should receive an email directly from IssuerDirect. It will look a lot like a bank statement. It’ll list your iConsumer shareholdings, your IssuerDirect Account Number, and your PIN. Examine that statement and if something is off, please contact us for help. Normally, you’d contact them directly, but we’d like to know about any issues that you see.
Once iConsumer has a ticker symbol, and is actively traded on a market (we’re shooting for the OTC QB), then there may be things you’ll want to do. We hope to get those steps (and the other behind the scenes stuff that makes trading easier) done in the first quarter of 2017.
For instance, maybe you want a brokerage firm to handle your iConsumer shares (stockbrokers like Schwab or eTrade). That way you can have your broker track your iConsumer shares. To do that, you’d instruct IssuerDirect to transfer your shares to your brokerage account.
Another reason … maybe you want a broker to try to sell your iConsumer shares. You can sell them yourself now, but finding somebody who wants to buy them will take work. Brokerage firms make their money, in part, by helping you sell your shareholdings.
A frequently asked question is “Can I get a piece of paper as evidence of my shareholdings?” That is, can you get a stock certificate? And the short answer is no. Certificates are very pretty, but they get lost and are an expensive pain for the transfer agent. So iConsumer is “book entry” only. IssuerDirect, by law, is the sole keeper of the records of ownership for iConsumer.
We’re working on making sure we post an update at least once a month (around the middle of the month) on our ShareholderAcademy blog.
So it seems that it is just a matter of time now before iConsumer issued stock shares become trade-able. That’s good. The big question, though, is whether there will be a market for stock shares that people can otherwise get simply by shopping. Will the shares have any value? Stay tuned.
|Name / Link||Offer||Frequent Miler Notes|
|iConsumer||We'll each earn 100 shares of iConsumer stock if you use this link to sign up.||In my experience, this has proven to be a reliable portal. With this portal you earn both cash back and shares in the iConsumer business. Requires $25 payable before they'll pay out.|