Fundraiser Scam Targeting Businesses

Wednesday, October 29th 2008, 5:56 pm
By: News On 6

By Lori Fullbright, News On 6

COLLINSVILLE, OK -- A Collinsville business say it's fallen victim to a scam when all they were trying to do was support their local high school.

Dr. Kristina Frantz just re-opened the Collinsville Veterinary Hospital after it had been shut down for more than a year. They're trying to get their name out, so when a company offered to sell them advertising on stadium cushions that the high school basketball team would then sell as a fundraiser, they said yes.

"He said the previous owner of the clinic always participated, even had the logo ready to go and ad copy if we wanted to participate for $369, we would have our name out there for five-six months and be supporting our school," said Dr. Frantz.

Then, two cushions arrived in the mail and before Dr. Frantz could figure out why she got them rather than the school, she got a call from the very same company, with a familiar pitch.

"Another sales rep called, saying they're not doing stadium cushions this year, doing flags and the band was selling them to raise money and it'd be $369 dollars, get our name out there five-six months, previous owner had always supported them and they had the ad copy read to go," said Dr. Frantz.

That's when she called the high school which is located right across from the vet clinic and learned neither the basketball team nor the band was doing any fundraisers. Plus, the name the company gave her as a contact, didn't even work at the school anymore.

When she called the company, she got nowhere; at least, she's not out the money.

"They haven't sent us an official bill, but they hung up on us yesterday, so I think the relationship is over," said Dr. Frantz.

She hopes others will learn from her near mistake.

Several of these types of businesses operate under different names. It's always best to call your school before you order anything, to check on their fundraising activities. It's better to deal with people locally rather than from out of state, unless they're school approved.