Billion Dollar Buyer - Netflix
Billion Dollar Buyer introduces promising companies across the country to one of America's most successful businessmen: billionaire hospitality mogul Tilman Fertitta, Chairman, CEO, and sole shareholder of Landry's, Inc. Fertitta oversees more than 500 properties and over 50 leading restaurant, hotel, and entertainment brands, ranging from high-end properties like Mastro's and Morton's The Steakhouse, to such mainstream destinations as Rainforest Café, Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., Saltgrass Steak House, and five Golden Nugget Casinos. With an annual supply spend of \$2 billion, his buying power is second to none. Now, he's personally scouting the country for the most innovative new products America's entrepreneurs have to offer - everything from food and drink for his restaurants and casinos, to linens and spa products for his hotels. In each hour-long episode, Fertitta will spend time with two small businesses, sample their goods, get to know their owners, and assess their compatibility with Landry's, Inc. He'll point out flaws in their product and operations, share his expertise, and push for improvements. In the end, he'll decide whether to place a transformative purchase order with one of the companies, both, or neither. These businesses are about to come face-to-face with the most powerful customer they'll ever meet: the Billion Dollar Buyer.
Runtime: 60 minutes
Billion Dollar Buyer - Debt buyer (United States) - Netflix
A debt buyer is a company, sometimes a collection agency, a private debt collection law firm, or a private investor that purchases delinquent or charged-off debts from a creditor or lender for a percentage of the face value of the debt based on the potential collectibility of the accounts. The debt buyer can then collect on its own, utilize the services of a third-party collection agency, repackage and resell portions of the purchased portfolio or any combination of these options. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) administers the 1997 landmark federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), which established debt collection industry standards and depends on the industry self-regulating or “self-enforcing” the statute through “private action” as opposed to “government law enforcement”. FDCPA protect consumers and ethical collectors. From 1999 to 2009, the “advent and growth of debt buying”, that is “the purchasing, collecting, and reselling of debts in default” was considered to be the “most significant change” in the “debt collection business”. According to Sacramento, California-based Debt Buyers Association (DBA), a debt buyers trade association, by 2008 there were “hundreds, and possibly thousands” of debt buyers. The debt buying industry was highly concentrated according to The Nilson Report with only ten debt buyers “responsible for 81 percent of all of the credit card debt purchased in fiscal year 2007.” DBA, which was established in 1997 and is now known as Receivables Management Association (RMA), provides the self-regulation tool for debt buyers, the International Receivables Management Certification Program which has been obligatory for all RMA members since February 29, 2016. In 2015, Encore Capital Group and subsidiaries form the largest debt buyer and collector in the United States and Portfolio Recovery Associates was the second largest. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's May 2017 Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit, Americans owe $12.73 trillion in consumer debt to creditors—credit card companies, student loans, mortgages, and car dealers, among others. These debts are usually paid off to creditors, but by 2017, unpaid debts were “increasingly likely to end up in the hands of professional debt collectors—companies whose business it is to collect debts that are owed to other companies.” According to the annual CFPB 2017 report, there were 130,000 people employed by 6,000 collection agencies in the “$13.7 billion dollar industry”.
Billion Dollar Buyer - Controversies - Netflix
The FTC has undertaken investigations and published reports in 2007, 2009,2010, and 2013 raising concerns about on . In 2007 the Commission brought actions against the largest debt buying companies for practices that ethical industry members also deplored. In her 2006 Washington Post article, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Liz Pulliam Weston described some of the worst practices debt buyer industry attorneys had used. This included “badgering” consumers for debts already released through bankruptcy", lawsuits or threats of lawsuits over debts released because “the statute of limitations had expired”, put pressure on consumers by claiming their 'old debt' is a 'new one' thereby "illegally 're-aging' debts on credit reports and “extending the seven-year limit.” They also make promises to delete “negative mark from the consumer's credit report” if a payment is made without informing the consumer, that making even a token payment revives the “statute of limitations”. Credit card companies purchase charged-off debts and add them to the balance of 'bait-and-switch' credit cards that consumers unknowingly purchase because they are low-rate credit cards. Consumers also complained of being verbally abused, harassed, “cursed, berated and called repeatedly despite requests to stop.” At the corporate level the debt collection business model is highly lucrative as debt buyers purchase “huge swaths of soured bills from lenders for pennies on the dollar.” Jake Halpern author of Bad Paper, described Encore Capital as a “behemoth” in the American debt-industry complex. In September 2015, both Encore and Portfolio Recovery Associates were charged with violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act by filing “lawsuits against consumers without having the intent to prove many of the debts, winning the vast majority of the lawsuits by default when consumers failed to defend themselves.” U.S. federal regulators - Consumer Financial Protection Bureau imposed an enforcement action on Encore for pressuring borrowers “to pay with false statements, with lawsuits and with the use of using so-called robo-signed court documents,” that was also used in mortgage processing in the subprime market. According to the New York Times Encore must pay “$42 million in consumer refunds and a $10 million penalty” and an injunction to “stop collections on debts totaling more than $125 million.”
Billion Dollar Buyer - References - Netflix