SEC Obtains Preliminary Injunction Against Businessman for Operating a Ponzi-Like Scheme

Litigation Release No. 24760 / March 6, 2020

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Todays Growth Consultant Inc. and Kenneth D. Courtright, III, No. 1:19-cv-08454 (N.D. Ill. filed December 27, 2019)

On March 3, 2020, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois entered preliminary injunction orders against Kenneth D. Courtright, III and the company he founded and led as Chairman, Todays Growth Consultant Inc. (TGC), which currently operates under a Court-appointed receiver. The SEC previously charged Courtright and TGC with operating an alleged Ponzi-like scheme that raised at least $75 million from more than 500 investors throughout the United States and abroad in connection with the offer and sale of investment contracts called Consulting Performance Agreements.

The SEC's complaint, filed on December 27, 2019, alleges that, from at least 2017 through December 2019, TGC and Courtright operated a Ponzi-like scheme.  In exchange for an investor's "upfront fee," TGC claimed that it would either buy or build a website for the investor, and develop, market, and maintain the website.  As alleged, TGC falsely promised that it would use investors' funds exclusively for expenses related to the investor's website.  In reality, as alleged, the sales were conducted through unregistered securities offerings, and TGC used new investors' funds to pay investor returns and Courtright's personal expenses.

The Court's order enjoins Courtright and TGC, which also operated under the name "The Income Store," from violations of the antifraud and registration provisions of the federal securities laws. It prohibits Courtright from offering or otherwise engaging in securities transactions. It also extends the asset freeze and other emergency measures originally ordered by the Court thereby preserving what assets existed when the case was filed. The receiver will continue to marshall and preserve TGC's assets.

The SEC's litigation is being handled by Suzanne J. Romajas and Michael J. Brennan, with assistance from Patrick L. Feeney, and supervised by Stephan Schlegelmilch.  The SEC's investigation is continuing.