(Topic ID: 203700)

deeproot Pinball thread

By pin2d

4 years ago


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#23551 5 months ago
Quoted from jeffspinballpalace:

SEC says it is all gone. I think we’ve uncovered Robert’s special skill - spending other people’s money. [quoted image]

Sure he spent it all, but some of the stuff he spent it on can be recovered like the jewelry, real estate, office equipment, etc

But most of it evaporated in salaries to people to not build anything, probably fancy meals and travel, school tuition, sports tickets, etc.

#23552 5 months ago
Quoted from frolic:

I'd be curious to hear see Robert's business plans (even if cocktail napkin) of HOW he was going to dig himself out of this.
That he was treating pinball as a tech company, with infinite scale, and would be able to cover the years of cash burn, was always a head scratcher.

I wonder if he targeted old retirees knowing they wouldn’t be around 10-20 years later

Maybe he just figured he could keep finding new investors long enough to keep it going.

More likely he really talked himself into selling thousands of games and having a company worth tens of millions he could sell before it all collapsed.

#23553 5 months ago
Quoted from TreyBo69:

Sure he spent it all, but some of the stuff he spent it on can be recovered like the jewelry, real estate, office equipment, etc
But most of it evaporated in salaries to people to not build anything, probably fancy meals and travel, school tuition, sports tickets, etc.

Sure, but I wouldn't be surprised if RM (and wives and trustees) have multiple credits cards out in the name of the entities with outstanding debt on them and no cash left on hand. Also wouldn't be surprised if there are other debtors to his entities and outstanding obligation to various government agencies. The SEC accusations are probably the tip of the iceberg.

#23554 5 months ago
Quoted from TreyBo69:

Even the animations are mostly worthless because deeproot chose really dumb themes.

Not to mention their 48 : 1 (or whatever) aspect ratio.

#23555 5 months ago
Quoted from frobozz:

Not to mention their 48 : 1 (or whatever) aspect ratio.

Forgot about that. So most of them probably can’t be salvaged into mobile game ads

#23556 5 months ago
Quoted from KerryImming:

Think about this realistically. Any company picking up these designs would need to re-implement them on their own hardware/software platform. That's similar to Chicago Gaming's effort to create the Williams remakes. That is, a TON of work. I don't see that happening.

Right, all for 100 games? That is, if they can convince someone to buy them a third time. The numbers don't make sense.

10
#23557 5 months ago

If I didn't know any better, I'd think Robert is a blowhard dipshit who has no idea what the fuck he is doing!

#23558 5 months ago
Quoted from blueberryjohnson:

If I didn't know any better, I'd think Robert is a blowhard dipshit who has no idea what the fuck he is doing!

Alright, let’s dig into THIS idea a little more!

#23559 5 months ago
Quoted from blueberryjohnson:

If I didn't know any better, I'd think Robert is a blowhard dipshit who has no idea what the fuck he is doing!

I’m sure the original insurance policy purchases will cash in any day now!

If Robert YOLO’ed it all into crypto he might have made this scam run for years longer.

Robert can just bounce around between mining in Africa, mechanical and electrical engineering, and spinning a dozen plates to keep the scam going.

#23560 5 months ago
Quoted from okgrak:

Sure, but I wouldn't be surprised if RM (and wives and trustees) have multiple credits cards out in the name of the entities with outstanding debt on them and no cash left on hand. Also wouldn't be surprised if there are other debtors to his entities and outstanding obligation to various government agencies. The SEC accusations are probably the tip of the iceberg.

It looks like the SEC is trying to claw back -> $1.6M RM salary + $1.5M personal expenses paid + $350k condo. Then there are civil penalties owed that has not been defined yet but my guesstimate of that might be $1.05M. That’s $4.5M owed and chances are slim that Robert has enough personal assets to repay most of this judgement.

What is not being requested yet is to pay furloughed employees their wages owed, associated benefits and taxes with penalties. Texas Revenue, Utah Revenue and Federal government are owed taxes on these unpaid wages as well as whatever amount wasn’t deposited on wages declared over the years. Assume Deeproot owed all employees 2 months salary and if they were paying $500k salaries per month, that’s $1M. Penalties are steep and might add another $300k for a total of $1.3M. There are no funds in bank account to pay this.

#23561 5 months ago
Quoted from blueberryjohnson:

If I didn't know any better, I'd think Robert is a blowhard dipshit who has no idea what the fuck he is doing!

Yup. Mix in some possible ADHD , low empathy, serial narcissism and criminal aspirations and you’ve got quite the loser cocktail.

#23562 5 months ago

Fire and Brimstone just got a new mode - "reach the deepest levels of hell by ripping off little old ladies"

#23563 5 months ago

Hey guys,any news on my Raza?
I really look forward to receiving it

#23564 5 months ago
Quoted from pinballrockstar:

Hey guys,any news on my Raza?
I really look forward to receiving it

It’s no more or less likely than if you ordered in December.

#23565 5 months ago

I wonder how much RM overpaid J-pop? Maybe J-pop saved up enough to start Zidware 2.0?

Seriously though, what a clusterfuck. Nothing would surprise me at this point. It's like the bare metal Terminator rising from the fire at the end of T1. What is next for this saga of the cardboard cutout mock-up games; is it over or will there be another rise from the ashes?

28
#23566 5 months ago
Quoted from pinballrockstar:

Hey guys,any news on my Raza?
I really look forward to receiving it

Reach out to Greatwichjohn. He's building one for you.

#23567 5 months ago

Finally got to flip through the SEC report: https://www.sec.gov/litigation/complaints/2021/comp25179.pdf

49. In or around March 2020, Mueller drafted and issued a document to investors that
he titled “deeproot Family of Companies - Investment Portfolio Narrative 2020.B2.” In a section
of the document describing the pinball venture, Mueller described why he focused on
investments – like deeproot Pinball – instead of just life policies, writing: “The downfall of
these companies (and strategy) wasn’t really because of the life policies themselves. It instead
was due to the company’s CHOICE of how to deal with the weaknesses. In nearly every case,
the company chose to LEVERAGE (i.e., either borrow capital at high rates on the open
marketing [sic], or Ponzi-scheme proceeds) against future maturities.” (all caps in original.)
Despite these statements, Mueller was doing exactly what he railed against other companies for
doing – making Ponzi-like payments and borrowing money in order to pay “returns” to investors.

#23568 5 months ago
Quoted from blueberryjohnson:

If I didn't know any better, I'd think Robert is a blowhard dipshit who has no idea what the fuck he is doing!

Quoted from spinal:

egomania: excessive vanity, pride or arrogance; self-importance

There appear to be a couple of treatable disorders at play. Probably Bipolar I - which is certainly treatable with multiple medications. Certainly NPD. MANY of these types of conditions go untreated. Imagine the disastrous consequences that could’ve been avoided with a simple medication such as lithium (but the entertainment value of this thread wouldn’t have been realized…)

MANIA: a distinct period of abnormally and persistently elevated, expansive, or irritable mood” and “abnormally and persistently increased goal-directed activity or energy.”

NARCISSISTIC PERSONALITY DISORDER (NPD)
In the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), [1] NPD is defined as comprising a pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), a constant need for admiration, and a lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by the presence of at least 5 of the following 9 criteria:

- A grandiose sense of self-importance
- A preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
- A belief that he or she is special and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people or institutions
- A need for excessive admiration
- A sense of entitlement
- Interpersonally exploitive behavior
- A lack of empathy
- Envy of others or a belief that others are envious of him or her
- A demonstration of arrogant and haughty behaviors or attitudes

#23569 5 months ago
Quoted from frolic:

I'd be curious to hear see Robert's business plans (even if cocktail napkin) of HOW he was going to dig himself out of this.
That he was treating pinball as a tech company, with infinite scale, and would be able to cover the years of cash burn, was always a head scratcher.

Thieves never think that far in advance

I knew a guy I went to school with that was selling mortgages - he diverted his customers payments to his own bank account.
Houses got foreclosed and he went to jail
What was his end game - 0 possibility of getting away with that

Thieves, Liars, & scoundrels never have an exit plan that makes any sense - they just enjoy the well while it's producing.

29
#23570 5 months ago

Stop trying to diagnose the guy. Just a dipshit criminal.

10
#23571 5 months ago
Quoted from sataneatscheese:

Despite these statements, Mueller was doing exactly what he railed against other companies for
doing – making Ponzi-like payments and borrowing money in order to pay “returns” to investors.

These blowhard types always project on others what they do themselves. We've seen a lot of that these days.

11
#23572 5 months ago
Quoted from Rascal_H:

Stop trying to diagnose the guy. Just a dipshit criminal.

This! RM is just another greedy financial loser that is so self-centered he doesn't give a shit about anyone else.

#23573 5 months ago
Quoted from BMore-Pinball:

Thieves, Liars, & scoundrels never have an exit plan that makes any sense - they just enjoy the well while it's producing.

Yes, I suppose that's why I'm always confused by them. I'm trying to make sense of a situation that they've created that makes no sense.

#23574 5 months ago
Quoted from frolic:

Yes, I suppose that's why I'm always confused by them. I'm trying to make sense of a situation that they've created that makes no sense.

I wonder if at a certain point they realized they're fucked and just lean into it.

#23575 5 months ago
Quoted from Wolfmarsh:

This! RM is just another greedy financial loser that is so self-centered he doesn't give a shit about anyone else.

He’s a megalomaniac

10
#23576 5 months ago

FYI, the Ben Heck interview is up on the Kaneda podcast page.

#23577 5 months ago

I have zero idea how any of this works.

Can someone explain why RM hasn’t been arrested/indicted for something yet?

Is that forthcoming?

#23578 5 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

I have zero idea how any of this works.
Can someone explain why RM hasn’t been arrested/indicted for something yet?
Is that forthcoming?

The SEC has now charged RM for defrauding investors. https://www.sec.gov/litigation/complaints/2021/comp25179.pdf

#23579 5 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

I have zero idea how any of this works.
Can someone explain why RM hasn’t been arrested/indicted for something yet?
Is that forthcoming?

Reminded me of this old skit

Robert only stole $58,000,000. He'll be given too much respect and care in dealing with him.

#23580 5 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

It seriously must have been Hell. I mean...four minutes in you are thinking to yourself "Why is this happening to me? How much longer do I have to stand here where this rotund asshole talks about a box and hurls some of the dumbest things

Rotund asshole is pretty funny but I prefer "beady eyed bullshitter"

#23581 5 months ago
Quoted from benheck:

Iceman is gaslighting.

I had to Google what gaslighting meant. It is now my favorite word and use it in all my arguments with know it all liars.

#23582 5 months ago

The most infuriating aspect to all of this is that someone can steal a bunch of other peoples money, spend it like it was their right to do so, then stand up in front of the world and say, oh, gee, I am sorry, this company just didn't pan out like I said it was going to, sorry about your luck, I'm off to Bermuda, oh and please re-read the prospectus if your undies are in a bunch from loosing your life's savings.

I mean, a man stealing day old bread to feed his starving family gets locked up in county for 6 months for shoplifting, yet scumbags like RM pull shit like this and get off with fines, probation, and community service, complete with an apologetic photo op and cryfest...

Hopefully the best thing that will happen is he is disbarred and banned from selling securities, but the damage to the investors, the workers, and the potential customers is going to put a stink on the pinball industry that will make it harder to raise capital in the future for a company wishing to enter the manufacturing space.

At this point, if I was JPop, I would be taking some remedial training classes in ditch digging, basket weaving, or Peep Show booth floor mopper because his career in pinball is (hopefully NOW) as dead as they get.

#23583 5 months ago
Quoted from Bublehead:

The most infuriating aspect to all of this is that someone can steal a bunch of other peoples money, spend it like it was their right to do so, then stand up in front of the world and say, oh, gee, I am sorry, this company just didn't pan out like I said it was going to, sorry about your luck, I'm off to Bermuda, oh and please re-read the prospectus if your undies are in a bunch from loosing your life's savings.
I mean, a man stealing day old bread to feed his starving family gets locked up in county for 6 months for shoplifting, yet scumbags like RM pull shit like this and get off with fines, probation, and community service, complete with an apologetic photo op and cryfest...
Hopefully the best thing that will happen is he is disbarred and banned from selling securities, but the damage to the investors, the workers, and the potential customers is going to put a stink on the pinball industry that will make it harder to raise capital in the future for a company wishing to enter the manufacturing space.
At this point, if I was JPop, I would be taking some remedial training classes in ditch digging, basket weaving, or Peep Show booth floor mopper because his career in pinball is (hopefully NOW) as dead as they get.

Yep this is how companies go. Note that the founder of We Work will see no jail time. He had an unsustainable business model, blew thru BILLIONS of investor dollars, but he was simply a huckster, and did not defraud people. If RM had laid out in his prospectus exactly what he intended to do with the money - including personal takes -he would likely not be facing the action he is. He is facing action because the purpose he said the money was for was not what he actually spent it on. If he had said I am going to take a mega high salary and blow the rest on an animation studio and pinball company he would have very likely been in the clear here. The taking out loans to pay back investors was probably legal if iladvised. The taking from other funds to pay back investors could have been legal too if he had taken out an acceptable payout. But he was so sloppy he just intermingled money. Ripping off people is not illegal. Not telling them how you are about to rip them off and then trying to cover your tracks is.

-10
#23584 5 months ago
Quoted from pinballrockstar:

Hey guys,any news on my Raza?
I really look forward to receiving it

If any RAZA machines ever make it out into the world they could be worth a nice amount based on rarity and lineage….even if the gameplay is ass.

#23585 5 months ago
Quoted from pinballrockstar:

Hey guys,any news on my Raza?

Bas - you slay me!

20
#23586 5 months ago
Quoted from Bublehead:

The most infuriating aspect to all of this is that someone can steal a bunch of other peoples money, spend it like it was their right to do so, then stand up in front of the world and say, oh, gee, I am sorry, this company just didn't pan out like I said it was going to, sorry about your luck, I'm off to Bermuda, oh and please re-read the prospectus if your undies are in a bunch from loosing your life's savings.

Give it time. It took five years for Robert to blow $58 million. It might take another five years but I can't see how he avoids prison. Tax Fraud, Securities Fraud, Breach of Fiduciary Duty. This SEC charge is the tip of the iceberg. If he has any brains in his skull he'll cop a plea, do less than ten years in prison, and everything he owns will be liquidated. Usually, these cases are hard to prove because you can explain your way out of it, and use documentation and obfuscation to build plausible deniability. But Robert didn't even try. He paid personal credit card bills with company funds. He transferred money between corporate entities without any documentation. He paid existing investors with new investor money. This is the closest to a slam dunk I'm sure the SEC will ever see.

#23587 5 months ago

Derproot

#23588 5 months ago
Quoted from TreyBo69:

All the coding is likely worthless
A foam core layout and maybe the CAD for it is worth a few thousand dollars.
And you’re not necessarily getting the people who did all the design work to make sense of all the project files and know the status of it all
What company would bother with any of this vs letting their teams do things the way they normally operate and are successful with?
Even the animations are mostly worthless because deeproot chose really dumb themes. If you get them for cheap, is someone really going to work backwards from two minutes of Arthurian Knight animations to make a game? And there’s a big assumption that they even made all the right animations a pinball machine would need to feel complete.
The animations at best show up as free to play mobile app advertisements.

All correct. The sum of DR assets is its two prototypes, its capital equipment, and its IP. We’ve determined the IP is virtually worthless. And the assets even favorably evaluated is probably no higher than $1M. You have to get to shipping machines, with predictable demand, and actual revenue to have much in the way of assets, beyond what a startup investor might put in. They never got that far.

It does seem that the pre-order money was a desperate scramble for funding to carry on the mountain of charade. Both evidence on the ground wrt manufacturing and this SEC filing suggest he never had any intention of using that money to build machines.

#23589 5 months ago
Quoted from pookycade:

It does seem that the pre-order money was a desperate scramble for funding to carry on the mountain of charade. Both evidence on the ground wrt manufacturing and this SEC filing suggest he never had any intention of using that money to build machines.

Who needs expensive assembly lines when you have octo?

Maybe that's all part of the ruse. Staff would get wise earlier by seeing no lines. But when you've got the trade secret quads to do the job, and no one knows what the hell a quad looks like, people can tell themselves maybe it's all legit longer.

#23590 5 months ago

The really sad part here was that there were probably good (if unrealistic) intentions that one could spend about $1-5M of the fund on pinball. And if they had competent management that should have been enough. But they didn’t. They went for the entire mansion build out instead of a 2 room apartment with that money. Then they figured out they needed even more money because it wasn’t enough, the mansion foundation wasn’t even laid yet. Lather …. Rinse …. Repeat. At each decision point where they could declare failure or decide to go down the rabbit hole, they went down the rabbit hole. And yet they never understood why they were failing to know why the new funds would result now in success. It is the ultimate in throwing good money after bad.

27
#23591 5 months ago
Quoted from pookycade:

The really sad part here was that there were probably good (if unrealistic) intentions that one could spend about $1-5M of the fund on pinball.

These are NOT good intentions. If Robert wanted $5 million to build a pinball company, he should have asked investors for $5 million for a pinball company. Instead, he lied to investors and said, I will invest in safe investments, life insurance policies, etc. I wonder why he lied? Oh thats right, because even the dumbest financial advisor in the world knows that investing in pinball is high risk. He wanted the cheap and safe perceived value of investment money for fixed income streams, but for other shit that is not that.

It's like when my derelict brother asks me for $150 in grocery money, then blows it at the casino (yes, this is a thing that happens in my life regularly). He knows if he asked for casino money I'd say fuck off I don't go to work to fund your habit. But when he asks for grocery money, shit am i going to say no to my iraq veteran baby brother who my mom asked me to take care of when she dies? The key is, after a few times of getting conned, I now physically take him to the grocery store and pay for his groceries at check out. And I keep the receipt so he can't return the groceries (yes, he would return groceries for cash).

11
#23592 5 months ago
Quoted from Richthofen:

These are NOT good intentions. If Robert wanted $5 million to build a pinball company, he should have asked investors for $5 million for a pinball company. Instead, he lied to investors and said, I will invest in safe investments, life insurance policies, etc. I wonder why he lied? Oh thats right, because even the dumbest financial advisor in the world knows that investing in pinball is high risk. He wanted the cheap and safe perceived value of investment money for fixed income streams, but for other shit that is not that.

This is 100% accurate. Robert should have pitched investors to invest in a high risk manufacturing startup in a niche market. He should have taken money from Venture Capitalists who are used to taking risks and the potential losses that come from it. Instead he took money from older people's life savings to buy some life insurance policies and to use his own fund as a personal piggy bank to pay for his vanity projects.

#23593 5 months ago
Quoted from CrazyLevi:

I have zero idea how any of this works.
Can someone explain why RM hasn’t been arrested/indicted for something yet?
Is that forthcoming?

the SEC is only empowered to bring civil complaints related to public and private securities. I believe they are able to then refer the matter to the State and/or Federal Prosecutor to bring Criminal charges. My guess is they would wait to do that until after they have proven their case and there's enough evidence for prosecutors to follow through.

#23594 5 months ago
Quoted from frobozz:

Not to mention their 48 : 1 (or whatever) aspect ratio.

Quoted from TreyBo69:

Forgot about that. So most of them probably can’t be salvaged into mobile game ads

They can if Robert relaunches the pinbar as a mobile phone!

https://www.theverge.com/2021/8/21/22635779/ceo-saygus-smartphone-company-fraud

EDIT: No joke, the similarities here are something. Maybe this Sayers guy and Robert can room together.

#23595 5 months ago
Quoted from greatwichjohn:

I do not do drugs, but I do drink beer!

Maybe you need to swap that, drugs may illuminate you better than beer. Alcohol didn't work for iceman...

#23596 5 months ago

More like Fi-douche-iary duty, am I right? Heh.

#23597 5 months ago
Quoted from iceman44:

I kind of figured it had to be maybe a disgruntled investment advisor or a group of them, but it was obviously so bad that it just went straight to the SEC

I wonder how quickly this escalated because someone searching for "deeproot funds" found THIS THREAD and that set the alarm bells off fast.

#23598 5 months ago

Robert must've worked hard in little old lady land to get all that investment money.

LL.gif
#23599 5 months ago
Quoted from Bublehead:

The most infuriating aspect to all of this is that someone can steal a bunch of other peoples money

The one key here is that people willingly gave the thieves their money, rather than the thieves committing B&E or hacking or otherwise taking it unknowingly.

Never go with sketchy companies for your investment OR pinball needs.

#23600 5 months ago
Quoted from frolic:

I wonder how quickly this escalated because someone searching for "deeproot funds" found THIS THREAD and that set the alarm bells off fast.

Source?

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