Should I invest in a shipping container or it is a scam?


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Banks are paying the lowest term deposit interest rates in a generation - somewhere between 2.5% and 4%, depending on amount and term. And there is considerable trepidation about where the sharemarket will head.

So why not broaden your investment horizons and buy a shipping container or two, leasing them and getting a 12% per year guaranteed return?

This is one of the hot offerings being advertised online and in some airline magazines by a Brisbane-based group called Own Your Own Shipping Container (OYOSC). It represents Pacific Tycoon, based in Hong Kong.

shipping container scheme

What's the deal with investing in shipping containers?

According to the online marketing blurb, an investor can hand over $US4100 (the $A price varies with the exchange rate) to buy a 40-foot (about 13-metre) shipping container backed by ownership documents from OYOSC.

The container is immediately leased, according to Corr Piccone, of OYOSC.

He says there are no other out-of-pocket expenses such as management, insurance or payment-processing fees, which are paid by Pacific Tycoon. The container has an average lifespan of 15 years.

The deal is that the investor receives a "guaranteed" 12% per year, paid quarterly. The push is on for investors to buy five of these containers.

Then the price comes down to $US4000 apiece, in which case you get a return of 12%pa paid monthly. This is called a fixed-plan lease. The containers must be paid for with cash.

There is also an "aggressive deployment plan lease", under which the leasing company sublets the containers on short-term contracts generating a higher income stream.

This return is variable so there are no guarantees.

But Piccone says that to date this system has consistently outperformed the fixed-return option and has earned more than 20%pa over the past two years.

Investors don't know where the container goes or what it carries. But they are told that it is insured against damage or loss. This assumes that the insurance is actually in place and that the insurer will pay up.

Other benefits

Subject to your own accounting advice, the containers may qualify for a 10% annual depreciation allowance. It's painted as a trouble-free investment: you pay the money, sit back and wait for the returns to roll in.

What's the downside of investing in shipping containers?

This is an unregulated investment. Piccone says that because investors are buying a physical asset, no prospectus or regulation is required.

The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) won't comment on the scheme or whether it has received any complaints.

Piccone and Helen Thomas, who appears to be his partner, have been involved in selling property and ATM machines or leases for some years.

Investors who own a container for three years can sell it back to Pacific Tycoon at the original purchase price.

If investors want their money back before three years, they will get market value for the used container. The container has to be taken out of hire and inspected for damage.

Piccone says he can't give an exact figure for a one-year to three-year buyout figure but estimates that it would not be less than 20% below the amount paid.

What if something goes wrong?

Investors are dealing with a company based overseas, apparently in Hong Kong, with no physical office in Australia to visit if anything goes wrong. Piccone says the company operates out of two or three homes or apartments in Brisbane.

There is nowhere investors can view their container - not that this means much since they all look much the same anyway!

If anything goes wrong - if, for instance, the returns are late - the only contact is an email or phone call to Piccone.

The corporate regulator would no doubt say the investment is unregistered and based abroad and therefore not its responsibility.

Getting financial compensation if anything goes wrong would involve taking legal action in Hong Kong. That is likely to be an expensive exercise with an uncertain outcome.

A guaranteed return of 12% sounds great in today's investment climate. It is more than four times what you would earn on a term deposit, and that should indicate a fair element of risk.


An attractive return on an asset that is not linked to sharemarket gyrations or interest rate cuts. No loans are involved so there are no margin calls or mounting debt difficulties. Investors can't lose more than what they put in.


It's an unregulated scheme with no physical head office accountable to anyone in Australia.

My call

For me, alarm bells were ringing when I was about halfway through reading the online offer document. My view is that it is a gamble.

UPDATE: The West Australian government has named Pacific Tycoon 'one example of an alleged sea container leasing Ponzi scheme'

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September 18, 2015 11.26am

Here's additional advice from the WA government which also makes mention of Pacific Tycoon:

Maurice o"reilly
October 19, 2015 11.41am

Surprisingly not many people have heard of this Venture/To further discourage investment by Mum and Dad investors the H.O. is in Hong Kong which we all know is a very dodgy place for business/In Australia the contact people operate out of homes and it would be nigh impossible to contact them once your CASH has been received/I honestly wish it was an above board legal enterprise because the returns are fantastic/A big thank you to the author who reported on this Enterprise

Humayun Kabir Chowdhury
January 25, 2016 10.50pm

Under fixed plan lease the deal is that the investor receives a "guaranteed" 12% per year, paid quarterly. This is undoubtedly an attractive rate of return on investment. But fact remains that business investment in Hong Kong is full of uncertainty and risk. Thorough investigation may be needed to ensure credibility of return from clients who are already involved in such venture and satisfied with the results. Thanks

James McKay
April 4, 2016 1.57pm

I have read with interest the comments made by all concerned in this post. I can fully endorse the need for due diligence and a general belief that investments in containers seem too good to be true.

I was in the same position as the title of this article, "Is buying a shipping container a wise investment?" Well after some months of investigating I finally generated a leap of faith and bought 20 containers. I was extremely happy with my decision and have subsequently purchased another 45 containers, some with Pacific Tycoon and some through Davenport Containers.

I am not a novice investor and did considerable homework. Before continuing however I would point out I did not buy my containers through the company mentioned in this article. I purchased them directing through Pacific Tycoon.

I have come to know the people running the business. I have spoken to Pacific Tycoon about this company in Australia. They tell me they are aware of them but are not connected to them.

Un be known to me I received a bonus check from Pacific Tycoon when friends of mine bought some container via my introduction. I am assuming (but do not know for sure) that this Australian company may facilitate the purchase of the container through PT and then receive their introduction bonus for the purchase from PT. A fair business practice I would say and a task/business that could easily be undertaken at home.. (I always offer the bonus back to my friends if and when they buy but that is not my business).

I have been extremely happy with PT, their paperwork is faultless, they are always available to answer your questions, always ring you back, always have their monthly accounts on time (but usually before time) and always send out your monthly payments on time in what ever currency you want. I have a friend who has been with PT for just under 4 years. I too wondered if this would be a Ponzi scheme, but given my friend had been with them so long and as I did my own research I was quietly confident.

Another point I would like to make is there is indeed a lot of chatter on forums about PT and some bad comments from one person in particular. In my research, even in the forums I was unable to find one person who could actually could claim they had bought containers from PT and then lost money as a result. From my perspective (and I accept there may have been comments I missed) all negative comments came from people who assumed it must be a fraud and with the loudness of repetition it morphed into fact.

The website alluded to in the first comment section refers to "Scamnet" from the WA government who start off their assessment with WA

"ScamNet has never received any reports of monetary loss to sea container investment schemes but blog threads suggest there are people who have lost money and what has been a genuine line of business now appears to be a target for scammers."

The CBA initially stopped my money transfer (for 5 days) because they said people had complained about this company. On further questioning the CBA (reluctantly) admitted that none of the complaints had actually come from people who had gone through with their transaction and that none of the people who had sent money had complained???

Again I agree with everything in the article that suggests you need to do your own research and that there are people 'out there' who are more than willing to steal your money. I still did my own research even though my friend had been receiving a very good income return for 4 years.

There are other things I could say about PT, where they have actually saved me money and accepted less than I would have expected given the change in the US/AU dollar exchange but I realise my comments have been long. I hope this has added some little balance to the assessment on this site, with PT at least. There is always a balance between risk and reward. Thanks for your time. James McKay

Bill Frantzis
February 1, 2020 12.15am

Hi James,

How is your investment with PT after the initial 4 years? I was told my containers are in Yemen and as it's a war zone with political termoil, my only resolution was to buy two more containers and release to another firm in Cambodia in which I'm getting 0.12% pa. IT'S A TOTAL SCAM!!!

mick vig
March 27, 2020 5.00pm

I was told exactly the same thing after they conned me to sell my containers. It is nothing but a ponzie scheme, all calls are from Sydney. Stay clear, ASIC is useless in warning people as is Commonwealth Bank who were wary when I asked to transfer money to PT abut wouldn't explain why. They are nothing but scammers, blackmailers and cowards.

Ashley Stephens
April 5, 2016 10.13pm

Thank you James for your comments. I would like to conduct my own research into this business. Can you please post a few tips as to how to go about doing this.
Kind Regards,

April 8, 2016 8.37pm

Interesting reading! I currently have 78 containers with PT, and most of them for 3 yrs, some 2 and some less just whenever I could I'd buy some more. Can't fault the company or the returns. they have been up there in the early 20% but coming down a bit now ,some are still in high teens. Paid on the same day each month 100% of the time and emailed income statement each time. The statement tells you how each batch of containers is returning. they are grouped together as you purchased them. If you bought 1 this time and 9 next time, they have when you bought them, when they were commissioned, what total return they earned and then your share and what it's worth in dollars, then your % on investment. I am currently terminating the agreement on some of the containers to pursue some other interests so that will be the final test. Good luck with it. Cheers.

M O'Keef
April 12, 2016 9.46pm

Dear James, thank you for posting a reply, which I have found to be very educational and informative. I'm currently looking into the same type of investment and have been studying it for some time with reluctance due to the nature of the investment and all the info on the internet around the same subject, which is somewhat confusing.
I would like to specifically ask you two questions, the first being, which company did you find more professional in terms of service and which of the two (Davenport, PT) provided you with the highest ROI?? Have you also had an opportunity to sell back any of the containers you purchased? If so, how much less was it as compared to your original purchase price?? Thanks for your help!

Darren Comber
April 20, 2016 11.19am

Can we have a private discussion please, about PT in general.

Cheval Sauer
May 2, 2016 2.46am

I contacted them expressing interest from New Zealand to get a prompt reply that this offer is not available to us based on our location here in New Zealand... I'm wondering why's that since its an international company with investors from our Neighbors in Oz... and the shipping container goes all over the world... can anyone comment on this??? What other countries are investors based in - eligible, and not eligible???

May 3, 2016 6.03pm

Any luck Ernie?

I'm in a different situation where I may negotiate to have access to second hand containers to lease or even sell and came across this article

Obviously this is a different scenario where you buy a brand new container off PT or a company and rent them out. James Mckay above mentioned buying his containers from Davenport and PT untiled them which I thought wasn't possible. Obviously they just want brand new containers. None the less this is an interesting opportunity.

Would love to hear back how you went and also if you had any knowledge of any corporations whom lease second hand containers. Any advice is appreciated.

Best of luck Earnie. Cheers

Sandra borg
May 3, 2016 7.46pm

I'm interest in this investment to but how do I find anyone who has put money down and can show proof that its not a scam

May 6, 2016 7.07am

Hi James.
I invested with PT about 5 or 6 months ago. Everything was flawless until this last month when the deposit never appeared in my account. I've emailed them several times and it appears that they've stopped responding. I'm still trying to believe that they're PT is legit but right now I have cold feet. The other very interesting thing is that lately, every time it's time for a payment to come through, PT insists on selling me more containers. Although that could be coincidental, I find it odd.

Please tell me what you think.

Matt Yelle
May 17, 2016 3.10am

Depreciation. This has been overlooked. Original investment of 4100$ is worth 0$ after 15 years. So if you calculate 12% yearly over 15 years minus loss of original investment 4100$ it comes out to about 5% return annually.

C Taylor
June 3, 2016 6.22pm

I have been with PT since Oct 2014 , from a recommendation, with ongoing successful results of a friend . The commission a $2,200 inc GST was paid to a company" Australian Mortgage Solution"s no matter if you bought 1 or more. I thought I would have more accountability, if it was an Australian agent dealing on my behalf rather directly with PT.The cost per unit was $3600 ea I bought 5 at the then aggressive plan not the now guaranteed monthly plan . Up to July 2015 the monthly return was excellent between 24% to29.14%. In June there was a 5 day delayed payment followed by a descending drop in 2015 August 14.25% Sept 7.62 % since then up till now in May the return has been under 3.6 % . The explanation was the units were in a contract far away from Beijing and I would need to pay approx $1000 US per unit to ship them back to have them in a better contract. The only other offer by one of the directors was for me to buy 5 more to join the original 5 to get them into a contract a the new Beijing Airport...this did not bode well to get out of my dormant units I had to buy more! . I was initially told if the units were away and out of circulation the most it would be is for 2-4 months . It has been 7 months now and I am waiting to get my original money out in Oct 17.(if this will be possible) I would like to hear from others who have sold any or especially all of their unit investments? The communication about my situation has been poor from the directors and when they do it is not with emails(except their offers to buy more) but by phone, (so there is no paper trail?). There is no other offered solution, they are unable to sell my units second hand as they will have to get them back to sell and there has to be a demand for second hand units. They do sell second hand ones as they have offered them to us $3900 instead of new $4100 . I have serious reservations about the PT company from my experience only. Like others have said, do your homework. I did not do enough. ASIC has on record (Doc no 028297145) ACN 167335944 a listing for Pacific Tycoon PTY LTD ends in Oct 2016(3 years) signed by one director, Xavier David Holden born 11/5/1956. Google that name and form your own conclusions.

June 6, 2016 11.58am


Has anyone heard of purchasing Vcomms ?
i have purchased a set and to be honest they have not missed a beat

I was thinking of purchasing more but was hoping to talk to someone else who had done the same.???

Ron Bendall
September 9, 2019 12.14pm

I also have the same problem with p/t. I find them to be frauds .however how can we as a group pursue a united path to get our money and expose this ponzi coy to all globe wise.please reply as to any thoughts on this major problem ron.bendall qld australia capital city brisbane...

June 6, 2016 12.00pm

Hi Abraham

have you heard anything about Vcomms ? and investing in them through Big Picture Alternatives. Any thoughts ?

June 7, 2016 1.26pm

Hi All

Have any of you heard anything about Vcomms ? and investing in them through Big Picture Alternatives. Any thoughts ?

Manor Daavie
June 14, 2016 9.30am

14 June 2016

Abraham same story with us. Worked fine for about 18 months. Nothing in May, PT squeezing us to change over to used containers. I am not interested. They are not responding to my instructions to buy out at market value. Better get some qualified help quick.

June 15, 2016 6.08pm

It's a straight forward Ponzi scheme.

They are going to payout original investors until it fails, so everyone who gives testimonials saying they are getting paid without any issue is true but one day no one will get paid and it's just a ticking time bomb.

As it's not a financial product e.g. stock investment, they have found a loophole to avoid regulatory watchdogs like ASIC as they cannot step in or tell people not to send there.

I'm still astonished how greedy some people are and these things are still going on. Good luck to the investors but I would be pulling my money out as fast as possible as your 12%investment returns are only the funds from any new investor.

When a bank or foreign exchange broker advises they cannot send to that bank account (100% it's dodgy) they're unfortunately not allowed to tell clients that the bank account is linked to a Ponzi scheme because it's illegal to tip off the investor as they may tell the Ponzi scheme.

Pat Manning
June 15, 2016 6.25pm

New Zealand regulation is more open to going after offshore Ponzi scheme. ASIC in Australia is mandated to only go after financial products and services.

As this is not a financial service like the old Ponzi scheme they have found a loophole in the Australian regulations to sell this type of Ponzi scheme.

Two important things to think about when investing in offshore investments like this in addition to the ones mentioned in the article.

First can they fund the investment through debt? As debt is by far a better corporate way to funds growth than equity. In Asia debt is very cheap at the moment and under 10%, so why would any company give away 12% guaranteed? They are straight up losing money and don't need your money unless they can't get a loan which is very bad because financials aren't in order then.

The second is to understand the product you're buying and the completion. As you're buying containers it would be smart to look up how the top container shipping companies are doing. Very quickly you will learn that the industry is currently in a massive oversupply and a shipping prices are at all time lows and companies are moving freight at below cost just to payoff debt, so it's a very bad time to be buying containers.

Screams a Ponzi Scheme and any original investor is incentivised to buy more or get others to invest to keep the Ponzi scheme going.

Ponzi scheme

A form of fraud in which belief in the success of a non-existent enterprise is fostered by the payment of quick returns to the first investors from money invested by later investors.
"a classic Ponzi scheme built on treachery and lies"

June 20, 2016 11.19am

I brought a total of 17 containers and I stopped receiving payments in May, they have stopped answering my emails. I think some of us have been scammed terribly. Can we get together and try to recover our investments

June 20, 2016 11.27am

Hi Abraham
I have also invested heavily in PT containers and the last payment I received was in April. I have read similar situations from other people. We should form a group and take legal advise about recovering our investments. [email protected]

Kate O'Hara
June 27, 2016 4.21pm

interesting comments. thanks to the author of the article and those who wrote to tell their tales.

July 5, 2016 2.00am

Hi Barry.

Any updates from Pacific Tycoon?

July 5, 2016 2.01am

Hi Manor.

Any updates from PT?

July 5, 2016 2.06am

I have been in contact with PT and have had to make multiple phone calls and email to get my monthly deposits. They're saying that it is because of the Panama document scandal that many Banks have tightened up their wire regulations but I have no way of knowing if that's the case.

They still keep sending me the monthly statement as before but then don't follow up with the deposit as promised.

July 5, 2016 2.08am

Sorry, I know nothing about Vcomms.

July 5, 2016 2.10am

Hold off Sandra.

We're having difficulty getting our deposits.

July 5, 2016 2.14am

Hi Ernie.

Any updates on terminating your contract with PT?

July 16, 2016 2.23am

Hi Abraham,

I had the same problem with payments since April 2016. I have been with PT for 2 years now and payments have been paid on time on the 23rd of every month. I have since been paid for May and June (got paid for June in advance) and look forward to my payment in July.

I have also got in contact with another investor in Montreal (got his details from a forum) who confirms he has since been paid as well.

The issue I have been told is to do with these panama paper data leak which caused banks to be more cautious with international payments and led to delays. I have a friend who I introduced to PT this year and he is waiting for 3 months payments by next week.

I have found the best way to contact PT is via phone - asking for the customer care team gets me through everytime.

For anyone who wants to see proof of income - I am happy to share this. Please email me directly for this - [email protected]

I will be more comfortable after 23rd July once I see payments coming through automatically again.


Steve Molonski
July 22, 2016 5.08am

After reading though , I certainly wish the current investors well , but I think I will stick to the ASX .Hope you all get your money and returns.

Chris Raeburn
July 23, 2016 6.39pm

I have just received an email from Richard Liu ,compliance PT informing me that my June return will be a "little late",with no explanation when it will be paid. Performance before for 12 months has been good.
Now I am concerned that there is a real risk of default.

July 26, 2016 8.06am

I have 200 containers returning over 27% which I've had for nearly a year. Payments over the past few months have been delayed a little, but paid up to date.

I visited PT in Hong Kong mid April at very short notice and was given a tour of their office, every question I had was professional answered by the team, who I have to say knew the business and industry very well. they explained how their computer system operates and links customer billing right through to investor payments, basically fully automated. The whole visit was very professional and hospitable.

A month ago I had a call from their Deputy Director of Operations Mr Canaris who hosted my visit in April saying they were having to do a number of investor payment manually due to banks questioning / rejecting overseas payments post the Panama scandal and apologised for any delays I have or may experience.

He said as you saw on your visit the system is automatic and they don't know without manually reconciling bank payments to the system it was not obvious who has or hasn't had payment stopped. This he said is taking a considerable number of additional personal to carry out this operation, but they were doing everything they can to rectify the situation, but they have some 7000 investors.

One of my payments was stopped by my bank wanting the usual ID checks, passport etc, my tax reference and said until they were sure everything checked out, the revenue were happy tax was being accounted for the payment would not be released. PT were more than helpful doing another transfer for the full amount by a different method and said when the other payment is released they would adjust it on future payment.

I have other businesses that trades internationally and have had a similar problems with a payment from South Africa. Banks as usual believe our money is in fact their money and they can do as they please, unfortunately governments have given them the power to it more so now under the guise of money laundering, which has nothing to do with it, it's just making sure they get every penny in tax!

I was introduced to PT by a friend who has a reasonable number of containers acquired over an 18 month period, the oldest now nearly 3 years, always paid on time and PT have been very professional to deal with. He has like many of us experienced some delays, but is paid up to date. He also has some containers under performing, PT issued him with new ones on a contract giving more expected returns, saying when the other kick back in we'll swap the new one's out, he is currently receiving income on both sets albeit the under perfuming ones are only returning 3%-4%.

I can only speak as I find and have witnessed. In my view PT is a very professional operation of some 14 years, and just like many business at one time or another are experiencing some difficulties.

July 29, 2016 8.04pm

Hi Barry i purchased 4 containers 2 years ago. Received my statements and payments on time until may this year. I spoke to Chinese lady today and said they were relocating my containers and it takes 6 months to do so. So much for containers in command. She also said they where having trouble with there money conversion people and should be fixed soon Dont know about this.

July 30, 2016 10.28pm

Hi Abraham,
Not all good on the termination, I have a schedule for 15 of my containers. They say 2 or 3 per month will be paid but already 3weeks overdue, said they have sorted it and was going to be last Monday,, nothing.
Might be all tied up with this hold up with their bank but my contract says they would pay purchase price 6 wks after notification, that was over 3 months ago.
I also have 48 containers in another name, they say they're having trouble finding buyers for large number. These are also meant to be purchased by Pacific Tycoon under my 2013 contract. They are certainly dragging the chain at best. I have bad thoughts about it all at the moment! Time will tell, waiting for June payment.

August 22, 2016 12.50pm

Hi Zahir,
I have some savings amount, which i saved through my salary of 2 yrs, which is as similar as technician package..

I have been through blogs and comments, and got to known that earlier PT has performed well, but from last some months there are issue facing by investors..

Please can you advise, seeing the current ongoing condition of PT.. about investing in this company..

August 24, 2016 12.06pm

Hi Taylor,
I have some savings amount, which i saved through my salary of 2 yrs, which is as similar as technician package..
I have been through blogs and comments, and got to known that earlier PT has performed well, but from last some months there are issue facing by investors..
Please can you advise me, seeing the current ongoing condition of PT.. about investing in this company or not ??

August 24, 2016 12.08pm

Hi Ernie,
I have some savings amount, which i saved through my salary of 2 yrs, which is as similar as technician package..
I have been through blogs and comments, and got to known that earlier PT has performed well, but from last some months there are issue facing by investors..
Please can you advise me, seeing the current ongoing condition of PT.. about investing in this company or not ??

Neil Denize
August 24, 2016 8.58pm

Hi Ernie

Can you please give us a update with the termination of your contract with PT?we are also investors and have been getting the run around the last month with out payments.We are just coming up to the end of our 3 year contract with PT in November and were wanting to sell off our containers and just wanted to know how you were getting on with it?

Thanks Neil

August 25, 2016 1.26am

Hi Taylor,

I can tell you have a lot of experience dealing with PT ... you mentioned that you bought 200 containers ! this is a huge number.
How easy is it to liquidate it and get cash ? Have you tried to sell or get cash out for some of these ?

August 30, 2016 8.50pm

Hi Ernie,

How did you go getting your Termination payment? Did they finally settle?



September 16, 2016 1.17am

Hi All,

Do not believe this hype, I purchased 20 containers from Pacific Tycoon in Honk Kong in 2014 under the aggressive lease returns for the fist year were 16% and 7.85% for the second year, this hardly 20+ % that is being promised, I also had issues after the 2 year lease was up when I tried to liquidate my investment, had to threaten them with legal action before my money was returned. Invest at you pearl but you have been warned.

October 7, 2016 3.36pm


You should have gone with the fixed/guaranteed rate of 12% instead of the aggressive lease with *variables*.

October 17, 2016 7.08pm

Do you mind if you can share more about your experience?

Trevor Jones
October 21, 2016 3.36am

Thank you so much for your article read with great interest.
Kind regards

October 24, 2016 12.53pm

I was about to go into this investment. I had to search hard and long to find out the truth.
there were hundreds of people preaching about the amount they made each year. The number of people talking, boasting, bragging, confirming -> whatever you want to call it, made it sound legitimate.

Basically, if you buy a shipping container, YOU WILL get a %% paid yearly.

But here is the kicker. Noone gets their initial investment back. So you put in $5000. They might pay you $750 a year... for 3 years. So you get a total of $2250. Thats all you get. Your deposit is gone.
BUT here is what is smart. If they just took your money, nothing back, you would tell the world and noone else gets sucked in. But because you are getting paid, and getting 15% back, you get your family, friends, work colleagues to all join in. You might even withdraw from your home loan, to put it into the investment, because home loan rates are under 5%, while you are "earning" 15%. But now, all the people that you brought in, now also bring in others. So instead of getting $5k.... YOU end up getting the scammers $100k - $1million.

In part of my research I did find a comment about a big investor, talking $100k+, he mentioned it was strange, it seems that the "call center" was based in one country, but met up in another. He got to meet them at an office, everything looked legit. Invested big money, went back a week later, the office was 'gone'. Truth was, the office was a room to rent short term, etc. Everything was fake.
Alot of people earning now, will find out the hard way. It IS a ponzi scam. There are NO shipping containers. The money will stop flowing to you one day, and your initial investment is gone.

November 15, 2016 2.36pm

Please reinstate the DATA BASE back into MONEY MAGAZINE----extremely important to determine how sectors are performing---

Thank You,

November 16, 2016 7.35am

Hi Christopher,

Thank you for your feedback.

Money editor Effie Zahos has confirmed databank will be back in 2017, so stay tuned.

January 20, 2017 5.49am

I have not seen any thing to indicate you get your money back in any off these comments. if you get 20 % return for 3 years you are still 60% out of pocket. In that 3 years you tell your friends about the great returns and suddenly they have more money. Why would they give you your money back after 3 years the containers are now 2nd hand?

The old saying if it sounds too good to be true then it is.

January 28, 2017 7.18pm

It's a fair dinkum Ponzi scheme. Bloody obvious if you read through the threads and see the initial returns decline to zero with no culpability or legal recourse. It's one for the mugs.

March 5, 2017 11.39pm

Pay attention to what Matt has said. This is the catch

Jack McLean
March 7, 2017 8.45pm

Also worth commenting that the name registered on the ACN (when googled) appears to be associated with multiple scams and crimes, including Heroin Trafficking.

March 8, 2017 3.17am

Please people, don't invest money if you have not already done so with PT. I have tried to cancel my contract with PT and they promised to deposit my money in December 2016 and January 2017 and to this day I have not seen a penny. They're nothing but a bunch of thugs who deserve to go to jail.

March 31, 2017 1.07pm

i also plan to invest on Vcomms, any update your research and have you found that reliable investment and company.

April 9, 2017 11.09am

Hi Faiz,
if you read comments carefully you can see there is something smelly in the whole scheme. Isn't that obvious to you?

You've been saving for 2 years and despite the smell all around you are still considering to invest. Do yourself a favour and forget it.


April 20, 2017 4.19am

I am really pleased I found this article. I have a decent inheritance and wanted to invest. But it's smells fishy. Even the Davenport Laroche option seems fishy. The websites look hokey and don't look like a professional website. The third party investment company that called me has a similar hokey website.

The investor was keen to tell me he bourght 20 containers and was seeing great returns and selling and buying new every 4 years. Yet when I looked up his investment company on companies house the firm made 12k last year from all their commissions despite saying that they made a 30k commission on a single deal.

I ran the numbers and reinvesting your profit into new containers supposedly would see you buying hundreds each year within 10 years (based on a 200k initial investment) and after that you'd be making millions..... nope! No investment is going to make you that much money in such a short time.

They bombard you with literature about how good shipping is doing but don't offer any information about the company it's self.

I've read that they pay people to log on to blogs like this and write comments about how good things are going and how much returns they are making.... sound familiar? I've seen a couple too good to be true comments on here.

I'm not going to invest my money in this. If you have money to invest, go to your bank and speak to a financial advisor. They will tell you where to invest in safe locations with good returns.

Buy property and rent it till you sell it. I made £100k on a £24k deposit on a house when I sold. (Shame I had to split it with my ex wife lol) but there are safer investments that you can buy into...

Guys. Think before you jump, do your research and read up on as many blogs and comments you can get too. Looking in to the companies, their parent companies and the people. A couple days research and you will see it's too good to be true.

April 23, 2017 3.46pm

DO NOT get involved with P.T or Davenport. I was with P.T and was conned into transferring to Davenport I have 19 containers
and currently receive 1 -2% pa nothing like the 27% I was told I would receive. I have requested to sell them but no luck.
I have sent many emails requesting information but never any answers to my questions only statements of facts about the lease. They won't leave a paper trail
I have serious doubts that I actually own any containers. All I have are sales documents which may be forgeries
I have requested that they tell me what ships my containers are being transported on because if you have the container numbers
and know the ship there on you can find out there actual location via free info on the internet. BUT they won't tell me.
I am trying to get someone to visit their H.Q unannounced to check out if it is just a rented office
DO NOT get involved in these Ponzi schemes other wise you will regret it as much as I do
I am considering if we can mount legal action to at least obtain documentation and proof about our investments
Contact me if you are interested We have to try and do something

April 24, 2017 8.24pm

DO WE REALY OWN ANYTHING. After further research I am becoming more convinced that in reality we do not own anything. SURE we have sales receipts and the registration numbers of the containers BUT are they genuine.
ASK yourself these questions
1 Do I know for sure that I own containers
2 Are the container numbers genuine and registered in my name

I feel that we do not in fact own anything, and the money we have invested is used in part to pay clients some kind of dividend
out of our money which they use to keep this Ponzi scheme alive
FOOD FOR THOUGHT. Please send a reply if you can prove that you actually own the containers
that you paid money for.

July 27, 2017 7.00pm

Wow!! What a simple/clever scam!
Think about it they pay you back a fraction each year of what you gave them. Just run the scam for 3 or 4 years and gather up as many people as possible to "invest" then shut it down and dissapear into the shadows. Feel very sorry for anybody who has gave these people money because you wont get it back (in full) ever. Probably legal to an extent but no doubt its also legal for the company to "disolve" or just flat out dissapear without anybody really caring. Simple scam by clever people.

August 5, 2017 12.58am

Hong Kong is the international financial centre of the world and it's hardly a dodgy place. Businesses there are highly regulated. It's a social administrative region and runs with commonwealth legal system due to its background as a British colony. Getting a business account opened in hk takes 8 months processing time. It's largely different to how China runs its business and even thought it's part of China now - it's still one country, two systems.

Miro Zimmerman
October 5, 2017 4.25am

Thank you all of you.

To read all your coments, despite some of them are positive, was very usefull for me, to avoid to be shipped in this vessel.

It's too good to be true.

Thank you.


October 16, 2017 8.48pm

Was thinking about investing in containers but all this put me off a bit think I'll be investing elsewhere

Robert in Vancouver
February 18, 2018 8.15am

I agree with Matt. After you allow for depreciation over 15 years (the life span of a container), your return on investment is 5% per year. I get 7% to 9% after depreciation is allowed for on REIT's traded on Canadian and US stock exchanges that own apartment buildings, medical buildings, and warehouses around the world.

February 27, 2018 1.01am

it's just another pyramid type scheme. And unfortunately there will always be gullible people who fall for it. These scam companies do not give 2 hoots for decency. Save your money and do not fall into the trap. Invest elsewhere, but always do your research. Its always worth the time and effort, so you will not be ripped off.
I see super investor James has not replied yet!

March 6, 2018 10.43am

Thank you all very much.
I can now make a decision.

March 9, 2018 7.51am

It should be noted that when the Pacific Tycoon (and then Davenport Larouche) scammers first began selling this Ponzi scheme in late 2012/early 2013 they paid a few people to open up multiple blog accounts pretending to be experienced investors who had glowing reports about their experiences.

It was all bullsh*t. The multitude of blogs all had one thing in common:
"Moderated" comments.
There are not now and never have been any containers.

As previous posters have pointed out, if Pacific Tycoon and Davenport Larouche were legitimate companies, they would borrow money a lot cheaper than what they are promising investors, own the containers themselves and not have to deal with the logistical nightmare of dealing wth "over 7,000 investors"

March 23, 2018 2.02pm

Note: When Money revisited this topic in September 2017, the West Australian government, on its ScamNet website, had named Pacific Tycoon as "one example of an alleged sea container leasing Ponzi scheme".

Read more:

- Money team

March 25, 2018 9.21pm

Thank you Pat,
You've summed it up for me!

May 6, 2018 4.25pm
August 30, 2018 6.34pm

Thank you so much for your positive note about investing on containers, in the whole article you just said about PT but not about Davenport. I am investing on Davenport, what's your feed back about it.

Ponzi Scheme
September 6, 2018 6.02pm

Do not buy these containers. I am part of a Pacific Tycoon Investors group on facebook of more than 50 members. All of these investors had problems with Pacific Tycoon. I am earning less than .02 % return on my investment and Pacific tycoon do not respond to my request to return my capital. DO NOT BUY. I AM SURE THESE CONTAINERS DO NOT EVEN EXIST

September 19, 2018 1.10pm

Hello Mr McKay ,
Your comment is very helpful and i'm now doing my own research for investments in general and for if you have time and is possible I would like some internet locations that I can visit and learn more and possibly contact PT members that can introduce me to their schemes! Any website that you think it would be helpful for someone that starts now it would be appreciated.
Thank you very much

Zahir Choudhury
September 25, 2018 7.43pm


Since my post over 2 years ago now, I have had peope emailing me asking for my proof of income. I can tell everyone who is reading this NOT TO INVEST WITH PACIFIC TYCOON.

I along with many other investors with PT have had nothing but trouble with payments and sell backs. Endless excuses.

It started off with an offer towards the end of 2016 where I was encouraged to swap my containers which were at this stage not earning me anything for second hand containers in South America for cheap price of $2000 each. The idea behind this trade deal was to get them shipped free of charge and no earnings during the shipment which was estimated at 7 months. Once they were shipped to China, they would apparently be worth $3000 - $3400 each. PT charge 5% for each containers so I would take home the rest. Sounds great right?

25/09/18 - still waiting for them to arrive in China. So 2 years gones, no income and containers lost at sea.

I was then allowed to swap some of these containers for apparently high yielding containers on a railway project in China - 25-30%. So far those high yielding figures never happened.

So like I say - endless promises with no light at the end of the tunnel as of yet. They have not done a runner as of yet so thats something positive. I will update this post if I get a positive outcome to my situation. Shame really as I was really an advocate for this company - had 2 good years of high yeilding income before this.

Save your hard earned money in the meantime and do not invest with Pacific Tycoon.

October 17, 2018 8.23pm

i received an offer from "Devenport " with almost the smae prices for containers and profits
are almost the same.

the only negative points were : no representative office in the UAE "where i live" and also,
the fact i don't know that my container will carry.

October 18, 2018 1.26am

Hi Kumar.
Did you get any more info on this. Vcomms
[email protected]
Appreciate any reply.

October 29, 2018 8.05pm

Hi, just a quick summary: I invested in Davenport. 4 containers... 1 year all good average 23%. after that period came down to 1% or less. excuses if I want to sell, is not that easy to sell...
also because of the good results bought some more from South America 5, at $ 7 months were meant to cost 3400 in china...after 1year and a half...containers haven't arrived yet and my leasing containers continue at 1%...
asking for solutions...they offer you to buy more containers in other locations in you are going to pay yourself in the short term... I am sure the same thing will happen. if you have been fooled once, why is not going to happen twice?
DO NOT BUY. I'll come back with updates in case they pay...

November 13, 2018 9.24am

hi does anyone have any experience with dedaco containers?

November 13, 2018 4.10pm

Then why do we need government for registrations and financial institutions at all ?

November 30, 2018 6.34am

should i invest in shipping containers or not? is it worth to do ?

December 16, 2018 10.41am

Wow! Okay good call on that!! That changes everything then. If in fact they depreciate to $0.00 after 15 years, then this investment is a no brainer. AVOID!!

January 17, 2019 8.26pm

I want to ask same question any experience with dedaco containers?

Nick Anteshon
January 21, 2019 9.26pm

Pacific Tycoon ,Davenport containers, Dedaco containers are the same scares operating from Vietnam. Your money are safely deposited atCambodian banks and you will never see them again

Nick Anterson
January 21, 2019 9.35pm

Almost all of the positive comments that you find here come from the same person who works for the scammers in Vietnam.

Those who are really interested to send money to the scammers traders be ready to loose your money.

Searching the internet you will certainly find what happened to the victims who sent their money for these good returns.

February 20, 2019 5.09pm

I have a colleague who's beem into this with Pacific Tycoon direct. He mentions that he gets 2% kickback for any new people he signs up to PT. I guess this is what this Corr fellow is doing. I beleve the ATM schme they had went belly up. I remember looking at it but it never added up. Then it went South according to my same friend who owns the shipping containers. Just remember in amy good ponzi scheme just don't be the last one in line for the money. I think I'll avoid any and all of these deals based on what I've uncovered when delving into their structures.

Leo Maria
February 27, 2019 11.28am

Hi Zahir,

i am one of those victims who invested in PT back in 2016, they were recommended by OYOSC firm owner Corr Picone, it's been more than 3 years, i haven't got my principle amount back and the return stopped 2.5years ago. my story is exactly the same as you have highlighted. Is it possible to contact you or may be call me 0434184968 when you get a chance.


Leo Maria
February 27, 2019 12.00pm

Please don't waste your hard earned money. I have lost all my investment. Three years have come and gone, my principle amount haven't been returned. More than happy to discuss in detail if anyone has any concerns. We have started a group and working o the possibility of recovering our money 0434184968


May 24, 2019 11.56pm

Hi Neil,
The news from here is I no longer get any monthly payments for my containers and they won't send me any money for the buy out so I'd say it's all over for me. Alot of money at stake but lost more like it.
Grin and move on.

June 11, 2019 9.52am

Hi Why oh why would you invest your hard-earned savings in such a questionable way??? There may be good stories but also many twists and turns, and difficulties realising your returns. ETF's Aus and US show great returns and capital can generally be released quickly.
Don't lose that hard-won money or spend sleepless nights wondering if it is all legitimate!

Natu Rama
June 11, 2019 8.55pm

Hi Mr James McKay
Are u able to tell us where to research the Davenport and other container companies credibility ?
Did u do anything with a equivalent of SEC and exchange in Homgkong ?
Appreciate your response as I am looking at investment with Davenport Containers in near future
Natu Rama

July 17, 2019 5.10pm

Hi Kumar, I am also interested in Vcomms investment and live in Sydney. did you ever find out if it was legit?

July 17, 2019 5.11pm

Hi Peter, I am also interested in Vcomms investment and live in Sydney. did you ever find out if it was legit?

July 17, 2019 5.12pm

Hi Invest Country,

I am also interested in Vcomms investment and live in Sydney. did you ever find out if it was legit?

Martyn Benson
August 25, 2019 11.44pm

Answering your question - It's a SCAM - a Ponzi scheme - a Pyramid scheme. Containers may have generated 12% 25 years ago but not right now and not in the foreseeable future.
Pacific Tycoon and Davenport are a couple of the better known of the Scammers but there are plenty of others.
I could go on at length to describe why this is so and why I am right but, suffice to say that PT is not known on the shipping company or leasing world and have not built any containers.
if I were Mr. James McKay and others who claim to have performed due diligence on Davenport and PT, I would be asking these companies for pictures of 'his' containers, the container numbers, the factory specs, a copy of the building order, which Chinese factory, a copy of the CSC plates and to which shipping company these are currently on lease.
If they are unable to provide any of these details then you know for sure that they are selling air bubbles.

I can only conclude that the note from James McKay is a plant from one or both of the named companies (as I have seen them do on other sites) and this is an employee or a pseudonym.

Zahir Choudhury - His comments about a location swap and increased value of containers in China is a load of nonsense and this is exactly the sort of information that an uninformed investor may believe but, for anyone in the container shipping and leasing business, we will be laughing our socks off at such nonsense. Again, as someone who knows nothing about international shipping and trade, you should stay WELL AWAY from things you don't understand and, if you really want to know, please feel free to contact me on my Linkedin profile for some advice or honest answers to questions.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 7.47am

Davenport Laroche are just as bogus as PT. If DL can produce evidence of the containers they control or have purchased then I will be the first to apologise and retract my comments.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 7.49am

Quite simple. Ask the companies for evidence of their container ownership with pictures and copies of the invoices they send to the shipping company customers. Ask them to produce the order forms they sent to the container factories and ask them to send pictures of the containers.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 7.53am

What are the numbers of these containers? Four letters and seven numbers in each case. Which factories built the containers and ask them to provide a copy of the CSC plates of a couple of the containers. With which shipping lines are these on lease? I doubt they will give you any specific answers.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 8.01am

A new 40' HC container costs about $ 3,400 (or less) and the usual depreciation in a leasing operation is based on 12 years with a RESIDUAL VALUE of around $ 900- 1,200.
So, do your calculation again and see how far away that is from the PT and DL models.

What this says is that these scammers are over-pricing the initial purchase and then not returning any or enough of the residual value.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 8.10am

The story about paying additional repo charges is a load of rubbish. This is not the way the business works and individual boxes are not micro-managed this way.
You could ask the leasing owner why they allowed the shipping customer to redeliver the container in such a lousy location in the first place? (Why not 'round-trip China' in the lease terms?). Essentially the leasing owner is asking you to pay for their mistake. Why are the containers at Beijing Airport, of all places (and how can they prove that?) - the advertising talks about shipping containers and maritime trade, not static storage at an airport.
Basically, all of what PT has told you is a cock and bull story.
There are NO containers.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 8.34am

Relocating takes six months? Why? Are they moving them with donkey carts?
Container relocation from any place in the world to any other place in the world will not take more than three months and should usually be done in one month to six weeks.
Besides that, the repositioning of containers is not done or accounted for individually - containers are moved and charged as a fleet, so a problem with a couple of boxes is not your fault or charge- it is the managing leasing company who have to swallow that cost.
Sounds like you've been burned.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 8.47am

How do you know they knew the business very well?
Do you know anything about container shipping or container leasing?
Did they show you any of their lease contracts with the shipping lines?
Did they show you any pictures of the containers (YOUR containers)?
Did they explain where their containers are built?
Sorry to disagree with you but I have never (in 40 years in container fleet management and container shipping) heard of anyone from PT or Davenport Laroche.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 8.58am

Not forgetting the already inflated pricing of the initial 'purchase'. The container selling price is always several hundreds above the market value of such boxes.
Honestly, I don't feel sorry for investors because they should have done due diligence and they should have educated themselves about the way the container leasing business and container shipping business actually works in reality.
I wish I could collect 5% of all the money people have lost because I could have saved them all 95% of their so-called investment.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.01am

Congratulations, Matt. You cracked the case.
I could add a few more comments but the details don't matter - PT and Davenport Laroche (and Dedaco) are Ponzi schemes with no containers, no shipping line customers and no intention of participating in legitimate global trade.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.10am

I have news for you- there are NO containers and there never were.
If you 'bought' containers why didn't you get container numbers and documents of title, along with the manufacturing details?
Your lack of understanding of the international container shipping and leasing industry has led you into a Big Black Hole. You should have requested advice from an expert in the field to explain how this works.
Then you would have seen that the claims made by PT and DL and others are far, far too good to be true.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.14am

No - you own air bubbles.
What are some examples of the container numbers - it is easy to check if these are genuine. Also, do you know at which factories these were built or do you have any pictures of the boxes?

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.17am

It's not the container investing you should avoid, it is the scamming fraudsters.
Container investment is a multi-Billion Dollar business but it doesn't work the way most of you investors seem to think and it certainly doesn't have the returns that you have been lead to believe.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.19am

They don't and they never did.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.21am

Dedaco operate from a Gadget shop in East London. They are no more a container leasing company than I am an Olympic Gold Medallist and World Champion pole vaulter. Stay away.

Martyn Benson
August 26, 2019 9.24am

Yes, it can be - but not at the fantasy returns mentioned by the scammer companies. You just have to do your due diligence and avoid PT, Davenport Laroche and others who promise 12% or similar.

Bobby Wilson
October 19, 2019 7.27am

Big Picture Alternatives / Vcomms is just another SCAM / PONZI SCHEME

Do your research!


"None of the so called partners"

( Vodafone ) ( Armaguard ) ( ITS ) are REAL.

Helene Thomas

Founder & Managing Director

Has been running many scams with the same model with other products previously over the years.

Her partner is Corr Piccone.

Own Your Own Shipping Container (OYOSC). It represents Pacific Tycoon, based in Hong Kong.

Again they were offering a fixed return investment with a buy back lease option at the end of the agreement.

This has since been shut down and is nowhere to be found.

Many people lost their life savings.

Corr Piccone and Helen Thomas, have been involved in selling property and ATM machines or leases for some years.

They continue to offer " guaranteed " 12% + returns for a number of years with the option to get your full initial investment back at the end of the agreement.

They are targeting mum and dad investors that have worked hard their whole life and saved every penny, just so they can live a lavish lifestyle. They have no remorse for the families they are destroying everyday. Bunch of criminals!

If you or a family member have also been a scam victim please report it to ASICS.

My uncle lost $$$$

Think about it for a second, they pay you back a fraction each year of what you invested with them. So you think it's legit and tell your family and friends. Just run the scam for 3 or 4 years and gather up as many people as possible to "invest" then shut it down pocket all the money and dissapear into the shadows. Feel very sorry for anybody who has given these people money because you wont get it back (in full) ever. Probably legal to an extent but no doubt its also legal for the company to "disolve" or just flat out dissapear without anybody really caring until ASICS get enough complaints to investigate.

If they get caught no doubt they will go to jail.

syed Abdul Jabbar
May 31, 2020 8.57pm

Davenport container leasing company is a complete hoax fraud scam and a cheating and I presume run by an unknown group of crooks.

i invested 4500 dollars and purchased a container.

initially they sent some money as rent ( about 50 to 60 dollars.)

then they said now your container is not fetching money and the send statement of 5 to 7 dollars per month but even that money is not coming. I requested to sell the container. they said you will get around 200 dollars for it. so please i request do not invest in this hoax company if you value your hard earned money.

Alan Murray
April 13, 2021 8.04pm

I had / have invested through Pacific Tycoon, I can 100% state due to my personal experience and other investors that this company is NOT legitimate, they operate a classic PONZI scheme, don't touch.