|The FW cows on the trailer in Beloit. Photo used with permission.|
Today is the day Fatwallet moves to Beloit, Wisconsin. Until today, we were located in Rockton, Illinois, in a beautiful building Tim had built specifically for us. It's a sad day for us. We love our building, our location, our community. Turns out, our state doesn't love us or the jobs Fatwallet provides for us, or any of the good things Fatwallet does for our communites. So, they essentially kicked us out.
Thanks to backing from Walmart, Target, Sears, and other large retailers, Governor Quinn signed the Affiliate Nexus Tax. This bill is disguised as a "Main Street fairness bill", an effort to collect sales tax from retailers that don't have a presence in Illinois (such as Amazon). The smaller retailers who were fighting for this bill don't see the irony of Walmart - the killer of Main Street America - backing them. Woe to them when the bus hits 'em.
Let's get one thing straight, once and for all. News outlets have been occasionally remiss in their duties in this story. Fatwallet is NOT a retailer. We don't sell anything. We are an affiliate of many online merchants. We're not trying to skirt any laws. Our affiliates - the only way we make money - are jumping ship. And rightly so. The Affiliate Nexus Tax is unconstitutional (see the Commerce Clause), and many of our affiliates are taking a stand by abandoning all affiliates in Illinois - just as they have done in New York, California, Rhode Island, and other states who passed similar laws.
Without the affiliates who are leaving us, we will lose 30-40% of our revenue. That will put us out of business. We're leaving to save ourselves and our services for the million-and-a-half registered members and untold numbers of unregistered people who use our site every day. Can you believe that? 54 people working on a website to save money for over one million people.
For a newscast directly from our new office: click here
For more information on Fatwallet, check out the website, here. For more information regarding the tax and the issues, check out these links:
Illinois Passes Affiliate Nexus Tax
Affiliate Tax Bills Explained
And for info and news regarding Fatwallet in this mess (remember to do a google search, this is just the tip of the iceberg!):
from world of Internet Marketing
Article from Rockford local channel 13
End note: the funny thing about the "fairness" bit: most people don't shop online to avoid paying sales tax. They're looking for the best deal they can find. Also, often, folks will research products before looking for them locally. Using the interwebs for offline shopping as well? Go figure.