International man of mystery brings big talk, bad track record to Beaumont

International man of mystery brings big talk, bad track record to Beaumont

Anyone being asked to invest mon­ey in Beaumont’s new indoor soccer league should know that “international financier” Thomas Anthony Guerriero is far from whom he and his staff claim him to be. In fact, an Examiner inves­tigation of the businessman’s interna­tional portfolios reveals that nothing is as it seems with this self-proclaimed “high performer business executive.”

Guerriero strolled into Beaumont just a few short months ago and instantly alarmed several people in the local business community he and his staff approached asking for sponsor­ships for the newly hatched Oxford City FC of Texas, sponsorships rang­ing up to $25,000 in support of, among other things, the Texas Strikers indoor soccer team, which Oxford City FC purchased, intending to field under another name in Beaumont.

To obtain local sponsorship, Guer­riero has touted a long list of entrepre­neurial endeavors and past affiliations with big-name sponsors, although at least one sponsor is calling foul on Guerriero’s sketchy claims.

When a representative from Guerri­ero’s Oxford City FC of Texas team called on marketing director Angie Arrington with local McDonald’s fran­chisee BG Foods Inc., something was clearly amiss. In Guerriero’s sponsor­ship literature, she said, he was using outdated and manipulated corporate logos, which set off alarm bells with the long-time McDonald’s executive.

“We don’t use outdated logos – ever,” she said. “It just doesn’t hap­pen.”

According to Arrington, it seemed highly unlikely there was any legiti­mate affiliation between the interna­tionally recognized McDonald’s brand and Guerriero’s company as he claimed because the McDonald’s corporation does not allow alteration of the com­pany’s logo, or the use of outdated logos, in any official capacity. Her next action was to alert the corporation’s trademark and branding office to warn them of the possible problem.

“The protection of our brand is of the upmost importance to our organi­zation,” Arrington said. “We stand behind our brand.”

Aside from the unbelievable claims of corporate affiliation, Arrington said she was also provided a poorly con­ceived marketing campaign from Oxford City FC of Texas wherein Guerriero claimed intentions to spend $100,980 annually for local marketing endeavors, an unrealistic amount, according to the seasoned marketing executive.

Not surprisingly, Arrington said the local McDonald’s has declined affilia­tion with Oxford City FC of Texas at this time.

“We want the community to know that we have not chosen to partner with (Oxford City FC of Texas), and because our logo was displayed on their web­site, we feel like there is a need to make the community aware that there is no affiliation,” she said.

Guerriero said that McDonald’s in Oxford, England, was indeed a spon­sor, “obviously,” because “we only put sponsors on our (web) site, due to the amount of hits we get. …”

Guerriero was instructed to remove the outdated McDonald’s logo from his website on Friday, Sept. 12.

Crossing the water

Guerriero is banking his new Texas endeavor on claims of past sporting success to cement his reputation as a purveyor of indoor field sports, but again those claims are not verifiable. According to Guerriero, he is the own­er of multiple sports teams - Oxford City FC, the Oxford City Nomads, and Oxford City Futsal – all soccer teams playing in the English city. He claims to have grown the teams to be crowd favorites and cash cows that bring good fortunes to their investors.

“Mr. Guerriero has successfully eliminated the debt in the company, restructured the landscape of the orga­nization to the most fiscally strong in the last 132 years by implementing his proprietary vertical integration financial model,” Guerriero writes on a résumé distributed to Beaumont businesses in the hopes of garnering support and sponsorship dollars. “Under his leadership he innovated several ancillary revenue streams, which have been introduced to the com­pany, while maximizing all existing revenue streams.”

Guerriero also markets to potential local investors the idea that he has land holdings in Oxford for his sports teams, and told The Examiner that “as we are speaking” he and his staff are finalizing plans to acquire a facility with five are­nas that can be converted to facilitate playing soccer or basketball. According to him, “the OXFC Real Estate & Property Management Portfo­lio controls a diversified port­folio of real estate including Oxford City Stadium, Oxford City Indoor Arena, and the Oxford City 3G Training Facility. OXFC benefits from these facilities both in usage and in rental income.”

But according to reports from Oxford, Guerriero’s soc­cer team was “homeless” in 2013 with no place to practice, much less host games. Report­er Dan Robinson from the Oxford Mail said Guerriero’s Oxford City FC in England is pretty small compared to the thousands of soccer endeavors stationed all over the country and even those located in the same city. Robinson also debunked much of Guerriero’s land holdings claims.

“He came to Oxford and was watching one of the games. … I met with him, and one of the things he told me was that he’d have the plan in play by next week,” Robinson said of Guerriero’s land acqui­sition in a meeting that hap­pened many months ago. Those high hopes never came to fruition, however. “I asked him what happened and he said something about a feasi­bility study or something like that. … His plans seem to be a bit outlandish.

“There is an Oxford Stadi­um, but he doesn’t own it. … Oxford City Stadium, I don’t know of that. … Oxford City Indoor Arena, I don’t know of that existing either,” he said. “They’ve been going around to different schools to play games.”

Robinson said there are actual places called Oxford Stadium, Oxford Arena and Oxford 3G facility – but all are owned by the city of Oxford.

In propaganda Guerriero circulated to potential South­east Texas investors, he claims to have stadiums full of fans to support his teams. But if Beau­monters are expecting the same crowds Guerriero pulls in Oxford, they may get a couple dozen seats filled, if a July 26 game Oxford City FC played is any indication. In fact, of all the games show­cased online, the Oxford City FC crowd never fills the small arenas to capacity.

The small crowds may be a surprise to anyone who saw Guerriero’s marketing of the England-based football club, since photos of crowds were manipulated to show large audiences at his small-scale events.

Guerriero doesn’t stop with cornering the market on soc­cer, though, and also holds claim to Oxford City Basket­ball, which plays their games in the English Basketball League, and claims to havebrought the Springfield, Mass., NBA D-League team Armor to champion- ship success. Which brings up Guerriero’s Ameri- can business affiliations.

Going global

Guerriero said he acquired the Armor basketball team in January 2012.

“When I went there, they didn’t have anyone in the stands, and no sales whatsoever and sponsorships, they were struggling,” Guerriero told The Examiner. “I went in there with a unique business model, obviously worked a deal … stands got packed, revenue got packed. We went from having the last place in the league, worst record in the league’s history when I got there, to when I got there becoming the Eastern Conference Champions and most profitable team in the league.”

The team’s success, he added, was due to his work ethic.

“I don’t think people work – or that they don’t work smart,” he said. “We do both. “Most owners want to leave at 5 or before to catch a round of golf. If you execute and you service people the right way, they will be with you every step of the way. “I never met anyone who works harder than me and who can lead men and others to follow them so vigilantly that they’re willing to work the hardest they ever have in their life.”

Verified Armor owner Michael Savit said the news that Guerriero turned the team around was news to him.

“He had nothing to do with it,” Savit said, who added that Guerriero was a minority investor for the NBA D-League team. “If he’s saying that, it’s just not the case.” Guerriero also claims to own two professional indoor soccer teams with- in the U.S., in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Miami, Florida, but neither team has been organized to date. If Guerriero’s Florida soccer team ever comes together, however, it would be in close proximity to yet another company Guerriero claims to own – the Oxford City Broadcasting Net-work, “which is broadcasted on 740AM in Florida that reaches from Miami, Florida, to Jupiter, Florida.”

While it is true that Guerriero registered a for-profit company under the moniker of the Oxford City Broadcasting Network, the company does not own a radio station. The 740AM Florida radio station is owned and operated by Beasley Broadcasting. To Guerriero’s claims of ownership, a Beasley marketing manager responded, “Absolutely not, they are not even any longer on the radio station. They did do a show with us (beginning in February 2014) for two hours (a week) for a few months. They did purchase that time, and then they went away.” Guerriero’s Miami radio empire is linked to when he first announced his business foray into American competition earlier this year – a move that has yet to prove true to the “forward-looking” statements Guerriero released to the media upon his “global” transition.

New to his business conglomerate is Guerriero’s hyped “Oxford City TV,” a Web-based outlet rebroadcasting copyrighted NBA D-League games.

Guerriero academia

Sports, near and far, and media are not the only money­making adventures undertaken by the global entrepreneur. Also contained in his laundry list of busi­ness affili­ations and o w n e r ­ships is “a diversified portfolio of academic institu­tions,” specifically the Oxford City Sports College in Oxford and CIT University in the United States, “which expects to have its first brick and mor­tar campus in the United States in South Florida in the near future to strategically put the University in a tremendous position for the future.”

Guerriero does not mention that CIT is only the most recent of names attributed to his collegiate undertaking, first filed with the Florida Sec­retary of State as Cambridge Institute Of Technology Inc. in June 2012, changed to CIT Cambridge Institute Of Tech­nology Christian University Inc. in November 2012, changed to CIT Christian Institute of Technology Uni­versity Inc. in February 2013, changed to Oxford City Uni­versity A Christian Institution Inc. in August 2013, and updated into its current name in March 2014.

CIT University’s curricu­lum, according to Guerriero, “is designed by Ivy League scholars and developers pro­viding a state of the art educa­tional platform and is unique to any ever seen.” Guerriero has, also according to him, been an instructor for the uni­versity since 2012, teaching “economics, securities mar­kets, (and) securities licensing preparation.” Guerriero also neglects to mention he no lon­ger holds any securities licens­es to sell or teach, and that in the educational arena, each of the endeavors were marked by outcries from those who paid for courses through his institu­tion and later complained not only to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), but also took to the Internet to warn others of the “pyramid scam,” with most of the nega­tive publicity ramping up shortly before the institution’s name changed time and time again.

Guerriero took his latest education-based campaign to the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce on Friday, Sept. 12, saying that he anticipates bringing the “Oxford educa­tion model to Beaumont” and insisting that the university he now heads will offer $9,900 master’s degrees, although none have yet been afforded to any student in any of his past educational endeavors. In fact, there has yet to be shown that a school even exists. Past stu­dents of Guerriero’s have claimed that no degree has ever been handed down by the man they call a scammer and suggest that the university is nothing but an extension of a longtime scheme of Guerrie­ro’s that can be noted under the businessman’s WMX Group undertaking. Guerrie­ro’s WMX was, and is, plagued with “rip-off reports,” SEC fil­ings, Department of Revenue liens, and word-of-mouth bad publicity, and was the holding company for Guerriero’s uni­versity. He has since “acquired” WMX under his Oxford City branding, rolling the groups into one large con­glomerate.

“WMX is the company we had established to make the acquisition of the actual sports teams,” Guerriero told The Examiner. “Then we made the acquisition and made the name change.”

Guerriero dismisses those who call him a fraud.

“When you’re young and successful and you have some money people are always try­ing to look for a fast buck or trying to drag you through the mud in some way,” he said, adding that he is unfazed because, “The cream always rises to the top.”

Guerriero said the universi­ty is “the bread and butter of the future of what we’re going to do. We’ve spent millions of dollars on development and we’re in talks with Dartmouth (Ivy League College in New Hampshire) right now to allow them to use our course on their campus – not just online, but on their campus. We spent mil­lions and millions of dollars on that development and it’s being launched this month.

“There’s no one who can compete with our program. … When we get it accredited, it will be nationally accredited.”

No program can be verified to date.

Guerriero failed to mention his last attempt at academia during his Tour de Beaumont: The Guerriero Institute of Finance, which, just like the many forms of Guerriero’s CIT University, was heralded as a scam exacted under WMX where students paid between $800 and $1,950 for classes at Guerriero Wealth Holdings’ affiliate The Guerriero Insti­tute to train them to become “financial professionals.” Then the former students would start working for Guer­riero and hopefully bring in new wealth management or consulting business, called a “classic pyramid scheme” by many of the graduates.

Local reception

Guerriero said two years ago, he “targeted Beaumont as the city we wanted to bring our team to. “We’re really excited about being here and doing something special.”

According to him, Guerriero sold his Springfield NBA D-League team to bring his expertise to the Golden Tri­angle, a claim not supported by the team’s owner, Savit.

Still, despite his limited role in the team, Guerriero told this newspaper that, “We sold our team for a reason – the reason was, me and Mike Savit … he wanted to keep it in Springfield and I didn’t. The purpose of selling the team is that in that league, you can only own one team.

“When I made my decision to come to Beaumont, I knew what that deci­sion meant. I knew it wouldn’t just be soccer and that we’d eventually expand to basketball and other things. We’re actually in deep talks right now about bringing a basketball team that way…”

According to Guerriero, there’s a “95 percent chance of a D-League bas­ketball team in Beaumont.”

Guerriero said Beaumont investors would be buying into a company that is well-established and profitable – and during his time at the local Chamber of Commerce said he plans to be the larg­est employer in Beaumont in four or five years thanks to his expansive sporting portfolio. However, financial filings made on behalf of his OXFC brand, the company is millions of dol­lars in debt and over $2 million of that money is due to the company’s found­er, Thomas Guerriero, who claims a multi-million-dollar annual salary.

In an unaudited quarterly report issued for Oxford City FC, the records reveal that, “The Company has incurred losses since inception and has a cumu­lative retained deficit of $8,805,550 as of March 31, 2014. The Company requires capital for its contemplated operational and marketing activities. The Company’s ability to raise addi­tional capital through the future issu­ances of common stock is unknown. The obtainment of additional financ­ing, the successful development of the Company’s contemplated plan of oper­ations, and its transition, ultimately, to the attainment of profitable operations are necessary for the Company to con­tinue operations. The ability to suc­cessfully resolve these factors raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern. The consolidated financial statements of the Company do not include any adjustments that may result from the outcome of these aforementioned uncertainties. In order to mitigate the risk related with this uncertainty, the Company plans to issue additional shares of common stock for cash and services during the next 12 months.

“As of March 31, 2014, we have insufficient cash to operate our busi­ness at the current level for the next twelve months and insufficient cash to achieve our business goals. The suc­cess of our business plan beyond the next 12 months is contingent upon us obtaining additional financing. We intend to fund operations through debt and/or equity financing arrangements, which may be insufficient to fund our capital expenditures, working capital, or other cash requirements. We do not have any formal commitments or arrangements for the sales of stock or the advancement or loan of funds at this time. There can be no assurance that such additional financing will be available to us on acceptable terms, or at all.”

Still, Guerriero told The Examiner that he would be fine even if he received no money from local sponsors. “If we didn’t sell one spon­sorship, we’d still be fine,” he said. “We don’t need that.”

When asked for comment about the findings uncovered by this newspaper, Guerriero became defensive, saying he couldn’t have been approved “by the NBA, the soccer league or whoever approves diplomats if anything had any type of relevance whatsoev­er.”

According to him, he only spoke with The Examiner at all “out of courtesy and trying to build something … and try­ing to build relationships.

“If you don’t want to take part of what we’re doing, that’s fine, but we don’t have any problems, we don’t have any issues,” he said. “We just want to go somewhere and provide entertainment to peo­ple.

“I’m not here to defend myself, and I’m not going to. For me, there is nothing to hide. It would be a sin for you to try to drag me through the mud to try to sell some news­papers.”

The more you know about Guerriero …

• Oxford City Football Club Inc. is only the most recent conglomerate name for Guer­riero’s extensive business undertaking – first incorporated Feb. 11, 2003, in the state of Florida as Smart Kids Group, Inc. June 11, 2012, the company changed its name to WMX Holdings Group Inc. and on July 8, 2013, the company changed its name from WMX Holdings Group Inc. to Oxford City Football Club Inc.

• Oxford City FC appears to not have a complete team roster yet, although the league is scheduled to play their first game Nov. 8. Ford Park executives claim fees for the first game have been paid in advance. To flesh out the team, Oxford City FC of Texas will be holding open tryouts on Sept. 20 and 21 at Ford Park in Beaumont. Registration included a $150 fee, but the fee was dropped to $50.

• Guerriero claims to be a former professional soccer player, “climbed two of the seven sum­mits, been featured in a major motion picture with Oliver Stone, and been featured on television around the world. He is a published author, diplomatic advisor on economic and fiscal policy, is known for being one of the most influential and powerful entrepreneurs in the world today.”

• Guerriero says he was the youngest Senior Vice President at First Union in their 90-year history: “As one of the leaders at First Union, he established his reputation for being one of the most driven individuals ever to hit Wall Street, known for his relentless work ethic, accompanied with the ability to execute tremendous achievements both indi­vidual and with his executive team. His efforts contributed significantly towards First Union’s assets eclipsing $400 billion, leading towards their acquisition by Wachovia in the biggest banking acquisition in banking history at the time.”

• Guerriero is also “a renowned published author with ‘How to Understand and Master the Stock Market,’ ‘How to Understand And Master Securities Laws & Regulations,’ ‘Plan For Crisis,’ and ‘Military Involvement and Trade Treaties: Exploring the Differences in Military Involvement of the United States in Foreign Countries, Post-Trade Treaty.’” All Guerriero’s books were published by Trafford Publishing, which is a self-publishing indus­try outlet whose “publishing packages range from $799 to $2,999.”

• Guerriero also boasts of his affiliation with Z Squared Technology, where he allegedly consulted on technology “used to identify Osama bin Laden.”

• Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) supports Guer­riero’s claims of past securities and exchange employment, but filings with the group also show that the self-proclaimed “high­ly qualified business executive” was fired from one broker firm “after allegations.” Also noted in the FINRA report are allega­tions that Guerriero misappropriated one client’s margin and misrepresented a stock sale to another – both claims of which were settled in favor of the clients. At least two more cases are pending against the former stockbroker, both filed in 2012, that allege “excessive trading, mismanagement, (and) unsuitable transactions” with damages totaling $150,000 in one case, and another alleging “negligence, unauthorized transac­tions, misrepresentation, and mismanagement” with damages totaling $423,344.

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