The Independent Business Owners Association International, Inc. (IBOAI) is the advocacy organization for North American Independent Business Owners (IBOs) affiliated with Amway®. The IBOAI advises Amway on every facet of the North American business, from products and promotions to operations and business guidelines. The IBOAI and Amway are dedicated to partnering for success with your input, support and participation.
In November, Nutrilite Distributors Jere and Eileen Dutt, Fred and Bernice Hansen, Joe and Helyne Victor, Rich DeVos, and Jay Van Andel meet in Charlevoix, Michigan, to discuss forming a distributor association. They agree to make it formal at their next meeting.
In April, operating through the Ja-Ri Corporation, the Dutts, Hansens, Victors, DeVos, Van Andel, and a few others form an association to gain a powerful voice promoting their interests and protecting their rights. The Association is incorporated in Grand Rapids, Michigan, as a non-profit organization under the name "The American Way Association" (AWA).
Walter Bass is the first President of the Association. The AWA Board meets monthly to investigate products for Distributors to retail to earn income. Products must meet five principles: universal appeal, repeatable sales, unlimited potential, not tied to the economy, and support free enterprise.
An AWA seal is developed to identify products that meet the AWA criteria, which appear on products approved by the Board. L.O.C. is the first product, SA8 is the second - brands that pass the test of time over the decades.
Amway officially opens for business in Canada. Soon, England and Australia will follow and the International Amway business will blossom.
Ja-Ri Corporation merges with Sales, Services, and Manufacturing to become Amway Corporation. The AWA begins advising the new company in all areas of its operations that affect Distributors, just as it continues to do today.
Dutts are Amway’s first Diamonds, followed quickly by Hansens and Victors. They attend the first Bahama Rama with 13 Distributorships in celebration. AWA recommends new pin levels as Distributors flock to the opportunity and leaders build growth.
The American Way Association changes its name to ADA-U.S. Simultaneously, Canadian IBOs form the ADA-Canada to provide the same protection and representation U.S. IBOs receive through the ADA-U.S.
IBO growth causes a huge expansion of Corporate facilities in Ada, Michigan. To keep up with the expansion of product selection and support staff, the Board initials the addition of new production facilities: liquids, powder, aerosol, plastics, even cardboard and printing. Distribution and warehousing are added. The Amway complex in Ada grows to a mile long.
Amway buys majority ownership rights in Nutrilite Inc. and guarantees integrity of lines of sponsorship.
Board Members attend the dedication of the new Center of Free Enterprise, which becomes the Corporate Headquarters and ushers in a new age of International expansion of the business.
Jay Van Andel and Rich DeVos arrive at a Board Meeting and announced that the FTC has just requested thousands of documents for an investigation. "It puts us in league with some of the largest companies in the nation," says Jay. "We are confident we will win." And we did. To this day it stands as proof of the validity of the business model.
Members of the Board join Crown Ambassadors at dedication ceremonies for the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel and the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum, accompanied by several heads of state and the sitting U.S. President, Ronald Reagan.
New Cosmetics Production Plant finishes expansion in Ada. State of the Art on-site facilities support growth of Distributor beauty business. Company expansion now moves off-complex.
Board Members are enthusiastic about the business opportunity in other countries; the Corporation expands Amway into Latin America, Europe, Asia, and places few would have imagined, including Eastern Europe, Russia, and China.
ADA celebrates its 25th Anniversary as the voice and advocate of the IBO.
Together, ADA-U.S. and ADA-Canada adopt an agreement with the Corporation that creates the ADA Council and legally clarifies its role as an advisor and consultant to the Corporation.
ADA-U.S. and ADA-Canada combine to form a single organization named The ADA. A larger Board is formed to replace the Boards of Directors of both former organizations.
The Corporation formally agrees to submit to The ADA any proposed new policy or policy change that might affect IBOs in the U.S. and Canada. These include, but are not limited to, changes in the Sales and Marketing Plan, changes to the Rules of Conduct for IBOs, and changes to various IBO documents. Final decision-making authority continues to remain with the Company.
The ADA is renamed the Independent Business Owners Association International (IBOA International or IBOAI) to embrace all that Distributors have become.
The launch of Quixtar (now Amway North America) as a business opportunity in the e-commerce model represents a new era for Independent Business Owners.
IBOs and their customers make Quixtar the #1 online Health & Beauty Retailer, a mark achieved multiple years in a row.
Jim Janz becomes first Canadian Chairman of the North American IBOAI Board. Jim has been active on the Board for 25 years, including 15 years as Chairman of the Canadian Board.
Amway begins rebranding, to be completed in 2009. Formerly Quixtar, the Corporation is rebranded to take advantage of the many positives surrounding the original Amway name worldwide.
IBOAI celebrates its 50th anniversary in March as the primary advocacy organization for IBOs, noting that before there was an Amway there was an Association. IBOAI events include dedication of the William J. Halliday Memorial Board Room (author of the original Association charter) and a festive celebration with current and past Board Members, Corporate associates, second and third generation family members, Founding Family Member Bernice Hansen plus special guest Wintley Phipps of the U.S. Dream Academy.
Amway celebrates its anniversary in May with events at the Corporation, a Global Diamond Forum and a special Global Executive Diamond Council in Las Vegas.