On 24, 2010, Sofia registered the trade name 123Mountain with the Colorado Secretary of State september
Anna Sofia and Olivier “Oliver” Goumas (picture: Facebook)
That cold temperatures during the Snowsports Industries America trade show, Olivier met Greg Gantzer, a outdoor activities and travel marketer who has SkiSite.com and styles sites for the industry. Gantzer says they quickly finalized an agreement to build website that is 123Mountain’s. By belated might, but, Olivier became testy once the web web site, featuring its massive stock of 50,000 items, had not been yet complete. In a message, Olivier had written that when Gantzer took until 6 to finish, he’d be paid only 75 percent of his quote for the job june. “After June 6, you might be a laugh,” he included.
“I think we might be having troubles with your discussion as a result of countries and language,” Gantzer wrote back a contact he showed to outdoors. “I’d really prefer to discuss this that we realize. to you in the phone so”
Alternatively, Olivier changed the password on their host, efficiently taking control over Gantzer’s progress up to that particular date. “Your are fired,” Olivier published in the slapdash English. Gantzer sued within the Summit County, Ohio, court, alleging breach of agreement, unjust enrichment, and fraudulence, among other fees. Olivier supplied a hodgepodge of defenses, countering that Gantzer had triggered damages “in more than $500,000.” In January 2014, a judge decided in Gantzer’s favor and awarded him $16,564. Gantzer has yet to see some of the cash.
“My hope of gathering using this guy is near to zero,that he can no longer rip people off.” he says now. “Our hope is to do something so”
In belated 2012, the Goumases exposed an additional store that is 123Mountain the Village at Copper Mountain Resort. In a write-up posted when you look at the local paper Summit constant, Sofia Goumas declared, “We start at where REI ends.” She explained they would concentrate on high-end brands, including European gear, and therefore clients could expect service that is personalized. “You’re gonna get certainly one of us exactly in danger, and we’re planning to make an effort to assist you to in any manner that individuals can.”
Olivier presumably countered negative feedback by publishing reviews that are positive of their shops under both their genuine title therefore the handle “Mountainblack,” in accordance with one former worker. Bing and Twitter reviews seem to be swamped by a large number of good ranks from bots—fictitious pages that share a sequence that is identical of and reviews.
Locals in Lakewood and Copper Mountain remember Sofia investing her days chain-smoking cigarettes while Olivier fueled up with glass after cup espresso. According to previous workers, the couple periodically made their shops membership-only and created brand new guidelines to exclude consumer visits, preferring to spotlight online clients.
Workers weren’t satisfied with the Goumases either.
Daniel Fluharty began working during the Lakewood store maybe not long after it started in late 2011 and ended up being accountable for shipping and packaging instructions and giving an answer to customers online. He quickly became concerned with the quantity of consumer complaints. One day, a customer that is irate up in the shop with legal counsel and stated that a coat he paid for had never ever delivered. Fluharty ended up being disrupted sufficient because of the event which he quit after four months. Their last paycheck, he says, have been docked $350 for the ski pass as a bonus that he believed Olivier had given to him.
In 2014, another employee, Bogdan Peleszynski, won a standard judgment up against the few once they did not spend him $1,082.79 for their final a couple of weeks of work. (Goumas denied the claim in email messages and court filings, arguing that the check ended up being lost into the mail, and agreed to deliver Peleszynski a brand new check minus a $50 termination charge.)
Nonetheless, the Goumases had incorporated into the Summit County ski community. Their two daughters joined up with Team Summit, a nonprofit youth ski program that 123Mountain sponsored with $10,000 yearly re re payments. The organization logo showed up on group jackets in addition to group web site, nevertheless the relationship soured in 2014, based on present and previous workers of Team Summit. Following the 2014–15 coats had been printed, Goumas didn’t spend their sponsorship cash or their daughters’ enrollment fees.
Rather, Goumas delivered Team Summit a hefty bill for neglecting to market 123Mountain weekly on Twitter, Twitter, and YouTube—as stipulated in an agreement Goumas had penned and Team Summit’s professional manager had finalized. Both events dropped their claims against each other in belated 2014. Team Summit’s bylaws permitted it to revoke subscriptions with or without cause and, in January 2015, the executive board voted to kick the Goumases’ daughters from the group.
Throughout the year that is past 123Mountain’s fortune appears to have go out.
In very early 2015, Copper Mountain started eviction proceedings up against the shop due to customer complaints and rent that is late but dropped the lawsuit following the couple consented to end their rent, in accordance with Gavin Malia, development supervisor for Resort Ventures western, Copper Mountain’s home administration firm. The few has been sued for over one thousand dollars allegedly owed to your Copper hill Resort Association for dues that supported trash pickup, recycling, and fire solution. The couple’s brand brand new outpost in downtown Frisco, which launched in June, ended up being shuttered on the 2016 Martin Luther King, Jr., week-end, one of many sale weekends that are biggest of the season. An indicator on the entry way detailing the shop hours checks out: “Opening hour may differ when we are skiing or perhaps not. General rule significantly less than 3″ no modifications. 4″-5″ at the very least hour wait. 6″ and above until feet have exhausted.”
Their Frisco landlord, Larry Feldman, states they will haven’t compensated their $4,500 month-to-month lease for December or January. The Goumases, he claims, argued these were withholding it due to difficulties with the carpet and lighting. Also they kept passing him bad checks, and he plans to evict them before they quit paying, Feldman says. “I’ve thought about securing up their product,” he states. The Lakewood that is original shop sometime before Christmas time, relating to locals, additionally the Goumases place their $500,000 home up for rent on January 15.
If there’s a lesson that customers can study from the 123Mountain saga, it is it’s always worth double-checking the qualifications of unfamiliar companies online before handing over a credit card number. In place of relying solely on a single review web site, such as for example Yelp, perform a search that is general customer complaints which may make you a troubling comment thread in discussion boards. Charge card defenses latin brides would be the strongest device customers have actually whenever things get south, so don’t be lured into delivering checks or Bitcoin payments to out-of-state companies. Wanting to recoup a couple of hundred dollars through the system that is legal not likely to achieve success and scarcely well well worth enough time. Shops can invariably conceal behind the print that is fine and customer protection agencies can take years to create an incident strong sufficient to nail perhaps the many egregious scammers. Today, 123Mountain’s products are still noted on Bing Shopping, which provides the shop three-and-a-half stars. And there’s little stopping them from showing up once more somewhere else with a brand new title and a slate that is clean.
In terms of Sara Benson, she finished up purchasing her tent from REI. Leigh Attwood cancelled their purchase with 123Mountain, disputed the $123.60 fee on their card to Visa, and reported to Moose Knuckles concerning the coat fiasco. The business told him which they had been conscious of the complaints and offered him the coat at 50 % down. It found its way to very early January, and Attwood really loves it. “I spared $450 into the end,” he says.