Investors in 4 Houston Businesses Receive Default Notices From Crowdfunding Company — Updated

Buffalo Bayou Brewing entrance

Republic Investment Services LLC, which acquired NextSeed in late 2020, has sent nearly concurrent default notices to investors in three Houston companies: Railway Heights Market at 8200 Washington, Shoot The Moon at 8155 Long Point and Buff Brew Tap Room (the restaurant and bar endeavor of Buffalo Bayou Bayou Brewing Co. at 2101 Summer). All were funded, at least in part, when NextSeed was still a standalone company. Two of the businesses, Shoot The Moon and Railway Heights, have been open less than a year, while Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co.’s restaurant and tasting room is just over two years old.

Update, 4/28/22, 12:05 p.m.: a reader shared a copy of a notice that also went to Bravery Chef Hall at 409 Travis. It has the same owner as Railway Heights, Company of Nomads.

NextSeed — and now Republic Investment Services — specializes in crowdfunding startups with very low financial barriers to entry. The minimum investment for Shoot The Moon, for example, was $100. As NextSeed, the company raised $1 million for Buff Brew, $409,000 for Shoot The Moon and $1,112,900 for Railway Heights from numerous private investors.

As it stands, the notices — which all follow the same format (see example at the end of this article) — state, “As collateral agent on your behalf, Republic Investment Services LLC (f/k/a NextSeed Services LLC) has been working with the [company name] team to find a path to maximize the return of capital to investors.” It’s unclear as to what course of action Republic Investments Services would embark upon to secure returns of capital.

From lefDax McAnear, Kevin Floyd and Jonas Herd of forthcoming Spring Branch bar, Shoot The Moon
From left to right: chef Dax McAnear, Kevin Floyd and Jonas Herd of restaurant and self-serve bar, Shoot The Moon. Photo by Amy Scott Photography.

We spoke with Kevin Floyd of Shoot The Moon regarding the notices Republic Investment Services sent to its over 400 private investors. “It’s unfortunate. We were given a little advance notice that this would happen, but not a lot,” he said. “We’ve been in communication on a monthly basis with Republic. We post transparent updates to the backer community so they know where we’re at. We’re going to have to hire counsel to deal with this at this point, which is really a shame, because every dollar that I spend to deal with this is a dollar I’m not going to have available to spend on payroll, rent or to pay investors. If NextSeed gets very aggressive with this, I can see a scenario that forces us into bankruptcy, and then there would be no way to pay the investors back.”

We asked Floyd if he knew what the deadline was that triggered the sending of the investor notices. “We didn’t have clear deadlines,” he said. “Under the revenue sharing notes we had with NextSeed, we’re obligated to use a percent of gross revenue every month to pay back the investors. We’ve not been in a position since the day we opened to make payments. Every month, we submit documents to NextSeed to show what our sales are, and we have a conversation with them about how things are going.” In a typical investor situation, businesses pay percentages from net profit, not gross.

Updated, 4/28/22, 12:18 p.m.: We had many questions for Abe Chu, co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer with NextSeed (and now with Republic), regarding the terms of the investments. While he declined to make many comments about the specific businesses, he did agree that Floyd has been transparent and gives regular updates. Chu additionally confirmed that the expectation is for investment recipients to make monthly payments from gross revenue, not net profits. “That is established from the beginning,” he said. “Doing profit-sharing with small businesses would be a much bigger challenge. If you are looking for a monthly accounting, that would be a much bigger burden on businesses. Revenues are simply an easier metric to capture and more straightforward. Profit sharing with equity investors is a very different type of investment, and they get paid out of the back end from profits. Our investors are not in it for the long haul. They’re in it for usually five years or less.” (It’s arguable as to whether five years is a long haul. For some restaurants, five years could represent an entire business lifespan.)

In short, a NextSeed/Republic crowdfunding investment behaves more like mezzanine debt. “It’s something that payments should be planned around, like, for example, a bank loan,” said Chu. “A bank loan would take priority in terms of payments, and it falls in line in terms of how an operator needs to think about planning their budget.”

railway heights coffee bar
Overlooking Analogue Coffee Bar and Margaux Button Crepes + Sweets at Railway Heights. Photo by Phaedra Cook.

A significant reason for the investor default notices on multiple businesses all going out at the same time: Chu says that NextSeed deferred sending many notices during 2020 and 2021. “At the beginning of the pandemic, we notified all investors that we were not planning on sending default notices, let alone enforcing them, for the near-term due to the economic impact [of the pandemic]. As the pandemic continued rolling along, we had to continue adapting our policies.” Clearly, that grace period has now ended.

The pandemic also meant that NextSeed was not engaging in one important business-support activity: events. “We integrated businesses into our events and offered opportunities for owners to connect with more people in the investor community. We showcased businesses in different ways, such as hosting panels. All of that was meant to foster the community, post-campaign as well,” said Chu.

Restaurants and bars have faced extraordinary challenges over the past few years. Both Railway Heights and Shoot The Moon were built out and opened during the pandemic. Buffalo Bayou Brewing had only been open about five months when the pandemic-driven shutdowns started in mid-March of 2020. The pandemic’s ongoing impacts include a mass exodus of hospitality industry workers, supply chain shortages and increased material costs. Under even good circumstances, it’s not uncommon for businesses to not reach a break-even point until year two.

A recent visit to Railway Heights Market revealed that road construction had cut off access from one side of Washington Avenue — right in front of the establishment. During my visit, a vendor commented that the construction block cut off the direct route from a nearby neighborhood that previously had been a regular source of business.

Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co. and Company of Nomads, the owner company of Bravery Chef Hall and Railway Heights, also have been highlighted by the @welp_713 Instagram account, which publishes anonymous complaints from industry workers about both companies. These are published in the account’s Instagram highlights under “Rassul Zarinfar” (one of the co-owners of Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co.) and “Anh & Liam” (two of the co-owners of Company of Nomads). While the allegations are anonymous and unproven, these are available online for anyone to read. It’s unclear as to whether the claims have led to reduced business for either company.

Buff Brew investment page
A screenshot of the BuffBrew Taproom investment page on the NextSeed website.

Although they may not have yet reaped monetary gains, some investors have received measurable material rewards. When Shoot The Moon’s campaign stalled around the $140,000 mark, Floyd says the only suggestion NextSeed representatives had for reinvigorating it was to offer backers free beer like Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co. did (one free beer a day for life for those who invested at least $1,000). As a restaurant, Shoot The Moon could not legally offer free beer, so instead Floyd offered free pizzas every month. NextSeed investors get a $52 monthly credit, which equates to about two or three pizzas, depending on the selection. The strategy worked and pushed total investments to over $400,000.

However, there were substantial costs involved, including marketing costs for the campaign, postage for shipping backer rewards, such as pint glasses and the cost of the rewards. Floyd says he had to hire a developer to create a database to track the free pizza program. The biggest cost, though, were the fees paid to NextSeed, which took a higher percentage of investor contributions that came to its portal instead of from Shoot The Moon’s website — regardless of whether it was Floyd’s marketing and promotion strategy that sent them there. All told, Shoot The Moon only netted approximately $329,000 of the $409,000 raised, according to Floyd. “It cost us about $80,000. In that is the fees to NextSeed, the cost of backer incentive fulfillment — swag and shipping — marketing and management.”

That doesn’t even include the ingredients or labor for the free pizzas given out every month — a program that Floyd still intends to maintain for the company’s backers unless he’s advised otherwise by an attorney.

With NextSeed/Republic receiving a percentage share of the investments up front, Chu says that while the company has no financial risk, there is another kind. “Investors are looking at our platform holistically, not as, ‘Well, you’re just a platform.’ So, the risk is reputational risk. That’s why we perform due diligence with each business to ensure there’s not just an idea, but a plan to move forward. We’re protecting investors through the process.” Additionally, if a company is not making its payment, Republic has to perform additional work, such as sending default notices.

What will happen to these businesses with hundreds of investors who just received default notices? In the short term, probably nothing. “Issuing these notices is a process point. It’s meant to let investors and the businesses know that we are monitoring the payments,” Chu said. “Based on the investment documents, our job is to stay on top of it. Businesses have a couple of months to catch up before they are in default of their obligations, but that is not to say that we’re enforcing that immediately. That’s not the goal. The goal is to find a long-term path for the business to be successful and for investors to get their payments.”

However, if Republic decides to enforce the default notices, it could exercise the liens built into each of the contracts, and start looking for assets to liquidate.

Would these owners use Nextseed, or Republic Investment Services, again to help fund their business endeavors, knowing what they know now? “I’m not an expert in the field of crowdfunding,” said Floyd. “I don’t know if NextSeed/Republic is indicative of the larger crowdfunding community, or if it’s an anomaly. That being said, I didn’t have a lot of options for access to capital at the time. Access to capital is probably the number one thing that presents a challenge to small business today, in particular, the restaurant industry. Traditional banks aren’t going to touch us, so we’re left to alternative financing.”

The situation, with Republic sending notices to hundreds of investors also highlights a surprising risk of crowdfunding versus more traditional routes of dealing with angel investors, venture capitalists or banks. When there’s a problem, it quickly becomes public.

Investors in any start-up business should be well aware that all of their investment is at risk. In small but noticeable print on the NextSeed homepage reads, “Investments can result in total loss and may be impossible to resell.” On the Republic Investment Services home page is a similar notice: “Investments are risky, illiquid and may result in total loss of capital.”

This is a developing story and will be updated as further information becomes available. Below is an example of the notice sent to Railway Heights, Shoot The Moon, Buff Brew Tap Room and Bravery Chef Hall.

Railway Heights NextSeed default notice
The notice of default sent to NextSeed investors in Railway Heights Market. The Shoot The Moon and Buff Brew Tap Room notices follow the same format. Screenshot provided by anonymous source.

Comments (10)

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  • May 5, 2022 at 11:55 amAlekezam

    As an investor in Shoot The Moon I am totally disappointed in the way they handled their business as well as their communication to investors. As soon as the first time I visited I had a pretty good hunch they would fail. There are so many things wrong with their business model starting with the exorbitant pricing. Rather than trying to fix their model they’ve continuously raised prices for no apparent reason. They claimed to have been cutting costs by cutting their work force as well as securing cheaper supplies……but yet prices still remain ridiculously high. You now have almost zero employees other than the ones working in the back and have hopefully secured cheaper supplies. But nothing has changed. And to top it all off your whole business model is supposedly self serve….so why the automatic 20% service/tip? They claimed that was to help pay staff…’ve now cut all the staff so where is the automatic 20% going? And for those of us who thought we were getting free pizza for life by contributing a larger amount….we are essentially treated like annoyances. And correct me if I’m wrong but part of your increase in pricing is basically trying to offset the free pizza costs to investors. For example, even with my free pizza credit of $55 per month I end up paying $12 (automatic service fee) and that’s barely enough to get 3 basic pizzas. So for a regular customer that same order is going to run you $67 for 3 pizzas? That is $22 per pizza?! And let’s be real here, the size of these pizzas are equivalent to maybe a medium pizza at Domino’s that runs you around $7 each. I can go on and on but that’s the basic gist of it. Transparent my ass…..everything they’ve communicated to us makes no sense because none of the so called efforts they’ve made have translated into anything other than “we’re losing money on a daily basis so we can’t pay you for the next few months or likely longer”. Quit blaming it on the Pandemic and other garbage. We’re past that already so those aren’t valid excuses anymore. Try dropping your prices and the stupid auto service/tip fee and I guarantee you’ll generate more business. A $25 prime rib night? Come on, you can get $20 ribeyes at Kirby’s…what makes yours so special? Jesus…..I’d be on your side if I knew I might have a chance to recover my money but I’m pretty much assuming I’ll never get it back which is why I almost hope you guys run into a worst case scenario because you pretty much deserve it at this point.

    • May 5, 2022 at 9:29 pmKevin Floyd

      I’m about to break one of my own rules. I generally don’t respond to comments online. As my Dad always said, “If it feels good, Don’t do it”. I will most likely make this my only comment to this on this forum, I’m not going to get into a back and forth, as I say later, if you really want to help there are a lot of ways to connect with me. However, in this case the nature of this comment requires a response…..sorry Dad.

      Ok lets take this section by section.

      We have sent out 12 updates since our campaign closed in Jan. 2021. That’s 12 updates in the past 16 months.
      We published updates every single month from January through September 2021 — and opened our doors in late July 2021.
      We skipped October of 2021, but put out two updates in Nov. 2021, and skipped Dec. 2021 and Jan. 2022.
      In 2022, we published updates on February 22, March 1 and on April 14.

      Could we have done more…sure. This is on me, I’m tired. I don’t like to just publish rushed info, I like to give updates when there is news and I like to give new info. Even short updates take time. This response is a good example, what will take you 5min to read took me a few hours to write, but I went ahead and skipped putting my daughter to bed tonight so I could address this.

      As for a response to the subject of this article, there is a new update coming out. I wanted to complete our conversations with NS before I published something with only half the info. Did you see the general follow up update NS sent out after the last one? That was the result of my conversations with NS.

      Service fee response – As is plainly described on our website:
      A portion of the service fee will help offset credit card fees charged in the collection of the service fee itself, but its primary purpose is to supplement compensation for our employees by providing more income stability and equality than traditional tipping models. The fee functions much like a tip pool but will support all employees, kitchen staff, bussers, and front-of-house/floor staff. Our goal is to give all of our employees a steady and fair wage, which we believe will help us attract and keep high-quality staff long-term, and help maintain the quality experience you expect.

      As an alternative we could just charge higher amounts on the menu and pay the staff a higher hourly wage, but I’m fairly sure that most consumers wouldn’t realize that’s what was going on and take issue with higher prices (clearly as you already think that our prices are high… you would be one of those people).

      Personally, this part of the comment pisses me off the most. Do you think the restaurant just magic’s itself open every day? Are there magic cleaning elves that break it down every night? Does the beer just magic itself onto the menu or onto tap? Does the magic restroom cleaning ghost go in and clean the restroom after someone had a very bad day with #2? I can list 100 things that we need a staff for and those people, we people, deserve to get paid a living wage. Not a high wage but a wage that can cover a person’s basic needs without forcing them to work 3 jobs a week. If you think the staff isn’t worth that… then you are a terrible person. Also, if you like, please come hang out, work a shift with me….or even better come in look my staff in the eye and tell them they are worth the pay check they get.

      Pandemic over? The health threat may be gone for now but the ECONOMIC side effects are still with us for who knows how long. Are you still paying a lot more for gas, groceries and all sorts of consumer goods? How do your property taxes look this year? Have you watched or read ANY business news in the past 3-6 months? The cost of everything is very inflated.

      In the past two weeks we had to take the crab claws off our menu because the wholesale cost had more than tripled from the last time we had ordered. We took chicken wings off the menu early on because of crazy high prices. Drop our prices? How? We are pricing based on the Cost of Goods Sold model we laid out in the biz plan.

      The $7 Domino’s comment is the clearest example you have no idea what you are talking about. For the best apples to apples comparison we are going to look at the medium thin from Domino’s. I found the Domino’s nearest us and got the carry out price….Want to guess? Its not $7….$13.49…. so you were only off by almost 100%. We are at $15…I am a single location…Domino’s is slightly larger and has a slightly stronger bargaining position when it comes to COGS pricing. Plus, this is just lazy. Take the extra 60 sec to do what I did and look the price up, make a stronger argument. Or find a better example. Or better yet…know what you are talking about.

      Our issue isn’t pricing….its overall foot traffic based on this location. The guest’s stratification is high as evidenced by good reviews (4 stars on yelp, 4 stars on trip advisor, 4.5 stars on google) and the fact that I basically live here and talk with hundreds of guests a week. We drop prices and we will just make our situation worst. If you cant see the impact of outside factors on the price of everything around us, please let me come live under the rock with you.

      other comments…
      We have worked ourselves to the bone to get this restaurant open and make it a success, because we feel it has tremendous potential. Yes we fully intend to pay back investors back. We didn’t open the restaurant with plans to struggle and fail. We are busting our butts and calling in favors to improve our sales numbers. I’m totally in on this…Hell I sold my house and have drained my savings. I have nothing left to give. I pay myself as little as I can to leave as much in the bank to keep the doors open. My partner is the same, we are killing ourselves just to keep this thing open.

      Haters gotta hate. Your criticism may make you feel like a big shot, but it doesn’t help. Have you been in the restaurant more than once? Have you offered any suggestions to the staff or the owners on site? Have you shared any of our social media? Have you helped at all? Do you really want your money back or are you just happy that you now feel like you have cover because you backed us so now you can get away with being on ass online? I’m here basically every day, I am one of the most transparent and easy to access operators in the industry. If you have concerns and have a real interest in helping, come see me. I have had direct face to face engagement with hundreds of our backers, many backers have reached out via email, many backers have given great ideas…many of those ideas have found their way into the restaurant. Backers have gone from strangers, to regulars to friends. All because they have engaged in honesty and well intentioned dialogue. If you really want to help, I welcome it, if not then the least you can do is try not to hurt us.

      Kevin Floyd
      [email protected]

      • May 7, 2022 at 6:48 pmAlekezam

        lright then, if you want clarity on my comments then let me provide some. I’ll also address your points of defense.


        You provided a total of 12 updates since closing of the campaign….fair enough. You failed to mention that 7 out of those 12 updates were before you even finally opened. Out of the 5 that you did provide since opening, in a roughly 10 month window one was basically chastising higher dollar investors on the process of claiming their rightfully owed free pizza for life. One was a push to get investors to perform social media and advertisement footwork for you, and the other 3 was a mixture of planned operating changes to help improve cash flow, notice that payments were not going to happen, and more pushes for social media and advertisement footwork.

        Service Fee:

        In your updates and my question directly to you as a customer on one occasion brought back similar responses. Securing cheaper ingredients, cutting back on staff, and more competitive pricing (or at least that’s what I was told at the time). What was the result? You’ve slowly increased prices over the 9 months span that you’ve opened up. You’ve essentially eliminated all your front staff (when you first opened you had quite a few people working the floor, now you have maybe one cashier….aside from yourself and your partner). Less staff means more to distribute with the service fee so are you paying more to the kitchen staff now because it’s obviously not going towards operating expenses since prices keep rising.


        My wife and I have come in once a month since opening and each time our bill comes out different despite ordering the same thing. Totally random. Twice, we were charged the total amount despite using our pizza investment bonus. We chalked it up to growing pains so no gripes there. But rather than take the risk of dropping our card in the drop box after leaving we’ve found it best to close out our tab prior to leaving. We haven’t been back in the past 2 months and have decided not to return because we’ve noticed the clear disdain for investors who are claiming their bonus. Not once have we been thanked for investing. As for foot traffic? We have gone weekdays and weekends both day and night and more than half the time it’s empty so maybe we’re just unlucky and have missed all the busy days.


        We were basically giving you benefit of the doubt and hoping on improvements over time and did not want to impede on how you run your business. As a seasoned business owner we just assumed after the update you provided on improving operating costs that things would change but they apparently didn’t. To my surprise, everything just got more and more expensive over time. I have to note that we only paid attention to the pizza so we can’t speak to the other items on the menu. It almost felt as if you were raising the prices on the pizza intentionally so that the service fee would be higher. This way, any investors getting their bonus pizzas would be paying to offset that loss. In hindsight we should have been more vocal but again, we thought you would make the necessary improvements on your own. In my opinion the 2 biggest things you could do to improve your foot traffic is to adjust your prices accordingly and do away with the service fee. You may have lots of first timers but I highly doubt you have many repeat customers due to those two issues. Your self serve taps are also too expensive when comparing to similar establishments such as say onion creek or Kirby Ice House, especially with you self serve model. Happy hour pricing gets your drink prices down to standard prices…..You are essentially charging as if you were a high end bar. So there you go. Take it or leave it but you asked for honest feedback. Oh and to piggy back the other commentor, I once casually asked one of you all (partners) what the current timeline of paying investors is and I distinctly remember the response “Oh, I don’t know anything about that, sorry”. You think that sort of a response, from a partner no less, would lead us to believe you’d be transparent with anything?

        Dominos Pizza Pricing:

        Oh, you bet I did my due diligence before writing what I did.

        Front page shows “Choose any 2 or more for $6.99 each” Medium hand tossed two topping pizza You obviously looked at the regular menu price when you went to Dominos. We all know no one orders from the regular menu when you purchase something from a place like that.

        Even though it advertises like a special it’s basically normal pricing since it’s been there forever.

        Your comparison…..plain cheese pizza $15 add a vegetable topping $2 add a meat topping $4. How do I know this, well because I’ve ordered. So let’s just say for arguments sake I order a 2 medium 2 meat topping pizza at domino’s…that would be $6.99 times two for a total of $13.98 plus tax. Now let me order the same at Shoot the moon. $15 plus $8 to make it $23 per pizza. So times two that makes it $46 and add on that 20% service fee making it a grand total of $55.20 plus tax. I know were not comparing apples to apples because your pizza is gourmet and Dominos is “fast food” but is gourmet pizza really better by a factor of 3.95?

        Pandemic Issue:

        You’re right, the pandemic is over but the lingering effects are far from over. Inflation is at an all time high, I get it. Just like when someone loses their job or encounters a negative life changing experience…what do they do, they adjust. Yeah, those things impact me but I’ve adjusted my lifestyle as a result and I’m perfectly fine. I understand not everyone has the ability to adjust but the bottom line is that it is your responsibility to make whatever adjustment is necessary to help the cause. It’s not us as an investor to do that job for you. Don’t use that as an excuse to tell us we can’t pay you because you couldn’t secure a business pandemic relief funds. Or better yet, don’t out other business simply because they managed to get the funds but you didn’t.

        I could go on and on but what’s the point. You are pissed and so am I. I encouraged others to invest to thinking this was a win win situation because your concept oozed uniqueness. So how do you think I feel? I’m sure there are plenty more backers that on the same page with me but I was one of the only ones to say it like it is.

        It doesn’t matter how one comes across or how much they piss you off but in my humble opinion it’s an automatic negative for an owner to bash on his/her investor. That alone shows where the true interest lies.

      • May 8, 2022 at 12:45 amOlena

        Looks like you’re blaming everyone but yourself and your management, Kevin.

    • May 11, 2022 at 11:02 amPaul

      Even from today’s 5/11 investor “update” it seems that management is still pointing fingers. The condescending tone of that email and also the comments on this page are not helpful in bringing more foot traffic through the door, so that’s one thing that management could work on…Keeping their mouth shut if they don’t have anything good to say. Make the negative comments to yourselves in private, but when customers see you speaking like this you’re not helping the cause.

      Second, it’s a stretch to say that STM is involved in the monthly farmer’s market. Last month the farmer’s market was packed at 10:30am, as was the taco joint next door and also Slowpokes. Was STM packed? No, because they didn’t open until 11am. The farmer’s market starts at 9am. I saw a guy try to go in to eat with his 2 kids at 10:40am, only to be told that they were closed and don’t open until 11am. How about adjusting hours on those days to capture some of that traffic instead of claiming to “participate in the farmer’s market” but in reality you’re closed during the busiest part of that. Surely the extra foot traffic during those early hours would offset the cost of staff, or maybe it doesn’t, but it’s never even been tried since STM is always closed during the busiest time of the farmer’s market.

      An unrelated small piece of additional constructive feedback….The taco pizza. Put the lime wedges on it after the pizza comes out of the oven. It’s impossible to squeeze the limes onto the pizza when they are 700 degrees.

      Finally, it seems that on paper management “welcomes” this kind of feedback, but in reality the few times I’ve suggested these things there was always a negative response from STM. Here’s a thought: welcome the feedback, thank the person for the feedback, and then decide whether or not to implement it. Don’t patronize your customers or investors. If you want them to feel valued and keep coming back, stop making them feel unwelcome with all of your negative comments. Part of being a successful small business owner is knowing when to shut up. This a lesson that STM is slow to learn.

  • April 29, 2022 at 9:47 pmChristine W

    Railway Heights will not successful until they get more parking. I tried to go on a Saturday and there was no parking available as the lot is too small.

  • April 28, 2022 at 9:44 pmJosh WIlson

    Shoot the Moon still hasn’t acknowledged this or sent a follow-up email to their investors. A well managed company would have proactively addressed this. Sad.

    • May 5, 2022 at 9:31 pmKevin Floyd


      Yes, sorry about that. I spent a lot of time on the phone with NS. I wanted to make sure that everything was clear with them before we sent an update. Next update is coming soon.


  • April 28, 2022 at 4:24 pmScooby

    It’s a stretch to say that Shoot the Moon has been “transparent” on their financials. Ask me how I know.

    • April 28, 2022 at 5:41 pmAllison

      Agree 100%! My husband and I are “investors” and every time we asked STM about the payments, that they fully committed to as part of the deal, they seemed to get mad that we were asking about it. Their communication is terrible…like 1 vague at best email every 3 months. It seems that they never really any intention to fulfill their end of these agreements. Lesson learned.