Kim Larosa is the owner of Stretch Zone. She says back in July she got a call from a sports advertising company in Texas.
“They asked us if we wanted to buy add space, OK. T-shirts that would be distributed at the Olentangy Liberty football games,” said Larosa.
Lorosa has two children that attend Liberty and thought it was a great way to advertise her new bus with the high school football season right around the corner.
A couple of weeks later, the same company asked her to advertise for the basketball team.
“So, I said sure great,” Larosa says.
But what she thought was a good business deal turned sour fast.
“About three weeks later, I received in the mail a T-shirt from them. Olentangy Liberty are Blue and Silver their colors. The T-shirt was purple and white,” Larosa said.
Larosa paid the company $300 for 500 t-shirts for the football season. And an additional $300 for 500 basketball shirts.
She says the Texas-based company only sent seven shirts.
Larosa says the high school contacted and let her know that they are not in business with the Texas company.
That’s when Larosa realized: “I had been scammed.”
The advertising company has a “D+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and often changes its name.
Larosa has since put a hold on her credit card after trying to contact the advertising company.
She received a voice message from the Texas company saying: “We see that you had disputed the charge and we don’t have any record of you reaching out to us and so we’re just trying to see what the issue was.”
“The Texas company actually contacted me again wanting to sell me banner space. Yeah, that won’t me happening,” said Larosa.
We reached out to the Texas company and our calls were not returned.
Olentangy Local Schools sent NBC4 the following statement:
“We are disappointed to learn that a company is using our proud name and reputation to take advantage of our incredibly generous and supportive community. Scams like this hurt local business owners and take away valuable sponsorship money that benefit our students, teams and organizations. We advise all business owners to contact the district to ensure the validity of advertising opportunities.”