NBO – National Business Online

The folks at National Business Online (NBO) have just rubbed me up the wrong way – completely!

They rang my husband 4 times this morning insisting that he urgently renew his advertising contract with them. He was busy and got annoyed by the 4 calls and caught my attention.

If he had paid to advertise with this company in the past it is reasonable that he would have OK’d it with me first, after all I know about these things 🙂 and I know I wouldn’t have OK’d it.

So, I rang NBO and got an answerphone and then finally Sonia rang me back and helped me find our ad – under

Home :: Building & Maintenance :: Building Repair & Maintenance :: Property Consultants :: NZ

which seems a little odd given that that isn’t what he does. Even odder is the listing

NBO Listing

The listing itself rings major alarm bells – we would never have approved it

  • Andrew King Ltd is not a currently registered company, and has never been registered to us
  • Po should be PO
  • The suburb name is spelt wrong
  • Andrew would have listed one of his websites rather than gone for a text only listing. The link that is shown refers back to the directory.

Not good on such a short listing…

I asked Sonia for a copy of the original invoice and she said it would take a couple of weeks but that she’d get it for me. An easy out or will she deliver?

So, I did some digging and found

with one director, a Kaur Singh PRITAM
Address: 1/73 Wintere Rd, Papatoetoe, Auckland

and this company had been incorporated on 18-JUN-2002 and struck off on 19-MAR-2004
That’s just over a year ago. So my husband must have been one of the first customers if he bought advertising from the new company and it’s up for renewal today: 30-MAR-2005

I used the Domainz lookup for NBO.co.nz and found the owner is now Shallandra Singh of the same address. The email address given is for nbd.co.nz but that domain is currently available so they may come unstuck when the time comes to renew the domain.

I then went to Google.

I’ll keep watching these guys and I’ll let you know if they come up squeaky clean or not.


Recent Comments



  1. Gavin deTroit
    September 2, 2008

    There are a number of similar sites doing the rounds. Not illegal, but certainly seem to push business listings through cold calling and fudging web stats.

    Wotzon would be one of these.

  2. Peeved Off
    September 2, 2008

    I have 22 faxes asking to “RENEW” my listing as well as most conversations I have had with them. I have confirmed the company they trade from was not even around 2 years ago (how did I advertise??? They tell me they changed their company name which is also rubbish as the compnay name they told me was struck off 2 years previously!!!). They have just started again yesterday (I have has two situations in the last 24 hours where I was speaking to one of them and another was on hold!). Carol the manager never called me back (what a shock!) so now I wait on hold until a manager is available (the current one is Steve). Same story as above but to ridiculous extremes. They are definitely calling from India (although someone from NZ is supposed to call me today to advise when my company will be removed (again) – hmmm I wonder for how long!). IT’S ALL RUBBISH!!!

  3. T
    September 2, 2008

    About 3 or 4 weeks back- our small business had 4 different call centre workers ringing and faxing us wanting us to renew. We received multiple phone calls a day until it got to be a bit of a joke around the office ” i wonder if that’s NBO calling …again”.

    It was definately a form of harrassment, and I was seriously considering writing them a very stern letter.

    After our very busy boss faxed back the form (which we recieved 6 times) they proceeded to invoice us for 2 years worth of advertising. We looked back through our records and discovered that “2 years worth of advertising” had already been paid by us LAST YEAR. SO they were invoicing us every year for a 2 year plan.

    We have now also discovered that we have had 3 different listings on the website – one complete with details, one without and one now removed. We think now that they have tried to make us “renew” our listings for the same company but under 3 different names (but obviously the same company!)

    1. just our company;
    2. our company with what we do added at the end; and
    3. our company with (Auck) added.

    Looking back at our records and comparing with the listings on the NBO website, they are not consistent with the details we have approved.

    This is not acceptable and we wont be paying any further money to NBO. The inconsistency makes our company look incompetent. The many phone calls are obscene and the double billing is …well….

    We will be taking further action.

  4. Peeved Off
    September 2, 2008

    PS I luckily have not paid these guys one cent but they have got away with A LOT of money!!!

    Unfortunately you can see the next step, they shut down and start a new company ripping those people that have actually paid off further by not giving them the two years they have paid for!!!

  5. Peeved Off
    September 2, 2008

    PPS Watch out for similar faxes from NATIONAL RECRUITMENT LTD and JOB LEADER LTD (nzcareerexpo.co.nz) – the director is the same Shallendra SINGH. I received a fax from Job Leader asking me to book a booth for their expo at the ASB Showgrounds 16-17 Feb 2008. I note their website is no longer operating and would be interested to know if this expo went ahead and if anyone paid money to this with similar results.

  6. Tax Man
    September 2, 2008

    I wonder if the IRD have ever investigated this outfit and its director Mr. S. Singh. If their history and audacity are anything to go by you can bet they aren’t paying all the GST and tax due on their fraudulent activities.

  7. Colin Peterson
    September 2, 2008

    do you guys have nothing better to do than carry on with this crap, if anyone watched the news carefully they would heard the comments from the commerce commission who the authorised watchdogs in these matters stating they found nothing wrong with the practise of national business online, i have been listed with nbo for 4 years and had great business thru them.

  8. September 2, 2008

    Colin – I’m thrilled that they have at least one happy customer. I take no pleasure from seeing people ripped off so the fact that your stats show that you get traffic is great.

    Would you care to share the site with us or even your listing page so we can see where this success story comes from?

    A shame you didn’t feel confident to leave your real email address as I wanted to ask you some questions offline.

    September 2, 2008

    Also watch out for all their associated sites http://www.SEARCHA.co.nz, NZCAREEREXPO.co.nz and others. These guys are a bunch of crooks and should be … well … bring back the gallows!!

    I now only advertise on Yellow and finda – at least these guys do what they promise

  10. T
    September 2, 2008

    We just discovered that we are on the SEARCHA site as well…interesting! and UNAUTHORISED.

    Plus we just did a test using the “contact us” button through the NBO website…no email has come through yet and that was 3 hours ago.

    Il keep you posted!

  11. September 2, 2008

    @PISSED – good spotting Search.co.nz details and look who turns up again:

    registrant_contact_name: national business online
    registrant_contact_address1: 349a Great South Road
    registrant_contact_address2: Greenlane
    registrant_contact_city: AUCKLAND
    registrant_contact_country: NZ (NEW ZEALAND)
    registrant_contact_phone: +64 9 3094563
    registrant_contact_fax: +64 9 3094564
    registrant_contact_email: info@nbo.co.nz
    admin_contact_name: shallandra singh
    admin_contact_address1: 349a Great South Road
    admin_contact_address2: Greenlane
    admin_contact_city: AUCKLAND
    admin_contact_country: NZ (NEW ZEALAND)
    admin_contact_phone: +64 9 3094563
    admin_contact_fax: +64 9 3094564
    admin_contact_email: info@nbo.co.nz

  12. ****nboh8er****
    September 2, 2008

    hi sarah,
    i wonder if you remember me? I rang you from nbo about 2 years ago and you informed me of what sort of company i was working for… thanks for that. Shallandra used to pay a couple of the employees off for spying on the rest of us, if anyone said anything bad about the company in a private conversation he would be told, and in all likelihood that employee would be fired. Also, they went thru the last say 8 years of yellow pages and copied all business listings into their website, thats why you will find more than 1 listing of the same business, you will also find businesses that ceased business more than 2 years ago but somehow requested a listing in nbo within the last 2 years???? funny huh?
    i am sooooooooo glad to see these arseholes are getting some tv time on how f****d up they are.
    so all THANKS to you sarah only 1 month after talking to you i told sonia to shov her job….and i hope her and shallandra are happy together… ahahahahahahaha
    oh and comment #42 by “lyn” is really sonia. she’s always had a problem with saying YOU, not yous.

  13. September 2, 2008

    Recently i had a call from NBO from michelle she wanted to renew my listing for 2 more yrs for 150$ & she told i had 579 hits on the site and she was so sweet on the phone an

  14. September 2, 2008

    Gosh it’s nice to hear from you!

    You sounded way too nice to be working there and obviously wasn’t expecting the response you got from me – not abuse, just a recommendation to search online and read up on pro forma scams.

    I hope you are working somewhere decent these days and that your NBO days are far behind you 🙂

  15. S.E
    September 3, 2008

    This is interesting, i have found my business on another website, that i did not authorize,seems to be a lot of search engines trying to do the same thing, http://www.nzlook.co.nz wonder if that’s another website of nbos, seems to be the same tactics, when they rang they told me a i had a 1 year free listing.

  16. September 3, 2008

    NZLook appear to be a different (and legit) crowd. I just spoke to Sonia and she even called me back to confirm some information. She was pleasant and helpful.

    I asked her outright if she was from NBO and she said “No”.

    Sadly it appears that she’s the same Sonia and it’s not just a messy coincidence. What a bummer. Thanks to Toni (below) for putting me right.

  17. Toni
    September 3, 2008

    Have been lookin into NZ Look and the Director is Sonia Klair, mobile 021 110-9363 (which is the mobile number in comment 14, and unless I’m mistaken, the Greenlane PO Box listed is the same as that used by NZ Career Expo). The website also uses the same Strongnet server as NBO does. I’m pretty sure its Sonia formerly from NBO. It just seems too similar to be a co-incidence, so maybe they are worth keeping an eye on.

  18. September 3, 2008

    I’ve also recently been asked to “renew” a listing I never approved and when told the number of “hits” I’d recieved from NBO I checked my own site statistics program and quickly discovered they were telling lies.

    It didn’t stop them blatantly repeating the same lie and as a knowledgable website operator it was especially annoying being told I was talking rubbish by a call centre telephone operator – how to win customers – not.

    Their website is also appalling in style, it’s 10 years out of date in look and feel and is broken on the first two links at the top of the page – good quality eh?

    What really pisses me off even more than NBO’s dodginess is our own Commerce Commision behaviour.

    Why on earth would they give the opinion that NBO is operating legally?

    How can it be legal to lie about the number of visitors NBO sent to my site, or that I had approved a listing with them previously when I hadn’t? Not mention their harrassment and refusal to remove my listing.

    Come on Commerce Commision – you seem to have a VERY twisted agenda by harrassing good companies like Vector while stating that NBO is behaving legally – you’ve really proved that you’re a pack of misguided twits.

  19. Peeved Off
    September 3, 2008

    I can confirm the Commerce Commission is currently investigating NBO again as at about a month ago so hopefully this results in a more positive outcome.

  20. September 3, 2008

    Toni wins the detective award for the day!

    Lets step through this.

    Ph: 09 309 4563
    Fax: 09 309 4564
    Postal: PO BOX 17226, Greenlane, Auckland
    Contact Page
    domain registration info [live]

    Ph: 09 309 4620
    Fax: 09 309 4629
    Postal: PO BOX 17163, Greenlane, Auckland
    Contact Page
    domain registration info [live]

    Ph: 09 309 4555
    Fax: 09 309 4566
    Postal: PO BOX 17163, Greenlane
    Contact Page
    domain registration info [live]

    Ph: 09 265-2305
    Fax 09 265-2601
    Postal: P.O. Box 17415, Greenlane, Auckland
    Domain Reg Ph: 21 1109363 – which does match comment #14 from Feb ’07
    Contact Page
    domain registration info [live]

    Sonia may say that she’s not from NBO but the companies office give the same address (10a Baverstock Road, Dannemora, Auckland) for both NZ Look and NBO. Whatever lines of demarcation she’s imagining just aren’t real to the rest of us.

    Keep an eye out for NATIONAL RECRUITMENT LIMITED, another company registered to Shallendra SINGH with a company address of 87 Albert Street, the same address given in comment #26

    The links above are images to give us a snapshot in time. The live links display the current domain registration information.

  21. Toni
    September 3, 2008

    The address given to the Companies Office for Shallendra Singh’s company “Job Leader Ltd” is also 10a Baverstock Road, Dannemora. Could it be that he and Sonia live together. He has also used his Mothers name & address for registering companies before as well, so I think we have to be very aware that he might pop up under any name or address in the future! It takes a little bit of investigating, but eventually you start to see the links between all the entities!

  22. EEK!
    September 3, 2008

    You have to wonder how far this goes… Sonia KLAIR has registered a company in June 08 with an address of 18 Carousel Crescent, Dannemora (with three other people living at this address) and the signatures on the registration documents look uncannily (is that a word???) similar. ARGH – you close one door and many more open!

    There’s also a Sonia KLAIR registered with a talent agency(?!?!) with a pic… is this her? Check out http://www.clynemodels.com/portfolio.php?id=SONIAKLAIR

  23. Merle
    September 3, 2008

    NBO – what a scam, and you are horrible aggressive people. Firstly a fax arrived then a phone call. I was not in my office, so they phoned back 8:30 am the following morning. James (with an Indian accent) insisted I sign and send back within half an hour. Said we had been on register for two years – Yeh right – I new I had not signed the business up for anything like. And had the cheek to tell me 500+ people had viewed our listing – Lies, just fat lies. I began to get angry with this man, and told him ‘not interested thanks’ With that I got a lecture, and the ‘why not’ etc etc. Talk about rude and arrogant. He continued to rabbit on so just said ‘I said I was not interested’ and hung up while ‘James’ continued his sales pitch. The tactics used are just not acceptable. I have spoken with pushy people before, but ‘James’ you topped the lot!!! Get a life, and stop harrassing people trying to earn an honest income.

  24. September 3, 2008

    I’m posting the images of the two NBO mainstays just so we can know who we are talking about: intelligent, pleasant looking people. What a shame they choose to put their energies into scams when it’s easy to earn a living honestly.

    Shallandra Singh
    Shallandra Singh, NBO

    Sonia Klair

    Oh, and I just found this Canadian directory with the name “local moa .co.nz” with a listing for Bullet IT magazine: http://www.localmoa.co.nz/retail/bullet-itmagazine-16683 [more] giving Shallandra Singh as the owner and the original Papatoetoe address.

  25. ****nboh8er****
    September 4, 2008

    yep thats sonia alright !!!

  26. Melinda
    September 4, 2008

    Is it not a little strange that the listings have MS Shallandra Singh?

  27. Not an NBO customer
    September 4, 2008

    Just had a call from them today.. told them to go away.. obvious lies telling me I had listed before… rang the bells for me.. then did a google.. and lead me to here.. Im glad my intincts were correct.. I hate these people.. Also in the same boat is National Enquiries by Consumer First in Australia.. the number of times I receive their faxes asking to be relisted.. sometimes 2 in a week. Pointless asking them to be taken off the listing.. done that about 10 times.

  28. September 4, 2008

    I spoke with Sonia earlier today about NZ Look and the issues relating to the Baverstock address. She tells me that Shallandra has no right to use that address in any way and that she has contacted her lawyers about it.

    According to her she had a good career at Fairfax prior to working for NBO and she regrets being involved with them. NZ Look is attempt to work legitimately in the directory industry.

    I advised Sonia that our conversation was “on the record” and that until the paperwork is done and there is a clear separation of her business from NBO she will be tainted by association.

    It’s not hard to change address however so we also need to look at how NZ Look conduct themselves and be prepared to revise the first, very strong, impression.


    and localmoa have come up with another listing Shallendra, this time for NZ 2000

  29. SE
    September 4, 2008

    So tell me the difference, why is there business listed that have not given authority too, seems to me same old tricks

  30. September 4, 2008


    Generally there is no problem with a free directory listing anyone and everyone (they earn money from real advertising) but this one is earning money from listings.

  31. September 6, 2008

    I had a phone call from them today with them asking for me to list (nto seo), and I realised that it was a scam the moment she said who she was – the callid as an overseas call, and her introduction gave her away. I then gave her a good ole lecture about the ethics of what they were doing.

    I didnt even bother to look at their website, and now have seen your phpug email and read through this.

    She said…
    “You have had a free listing for the last year”
    “You have had 400 visits to your website through the listing”

    What a whole lot of crap. I bet the visits were bots going through the links, not real people. And I have still not looked at their website.

    Maybe my lecture encouraged her to get an SEO. Who knows. I certainly would not touch it with a barge poll.

    Thanks for your heads up Sarah.

  32. Marvin Beechell
    September 9, 2008

    I’m a small business owner in wellington and have received numerous calls from NBO over the years – complete sham.

    Unfortunately turning down directory websites became part of my week. Sites like nbo.co.nz and Wotzon.com drive me mad always calling asking me to list or relist.

    From what I understand I had a ‘free’ listing on wotzon.com for my cafe – one i did not enter myself. I was approached by them 5 times within 2 months trying to get me to upgrade my listing.

    NBO were worse though. Sonia got quite crabby when i asked for proof of stats.

  33. September 10, 2008

    teri maa ka naka nbo suckssss its a scam and plz dont call me again to renewing my listings.

  34. Dave
    September 11, 2008

    You wouldn’t believe it, they have found another one of my branch’s, listing appeared today and the manager has had a call already with the usual lies and con trick to try and get a renewed listing. I phoned Mr Singh on his mobile and told him to get the listing of his website and he said he did not have time for this and hung up on me. I have sent a strong worded email via the contact page on their website and told them to get the listing off. Their scam seems to be intensifying as it is about every 3 weeks now that a new listing appears and the calls start again.
    I am just aghast at the nerve of this mob. I hate liars and cheats, this sort of thing should be illegal.

  35. NboScammer
    September 15, 2008

    Hi, as a former employee i know there is sometihng very very wrong with that company i was informed by sonia that Shallandra Singh’s mother was the owner of the company through looking on the net after letting another employee know i was forced to resign i would have taken it futher but i go a job with a decent company and have been their ever since its unfair to bully and scam you employees into lieing and the hits are fake we make it up!!! as we are told to.
    i lasted 7 months with that company they treat their employees with to respect and it seems sonia suits being in this postion as she allways loved drama

  36. Dave
    September 16, 2008

    See my comment # 136
    These guys just don’t give up. Our company is not even listed on their website any more since I sent them an email that would make your hair curl, (they removed the listing). Yet they have phoned two of my branch’s in the last two days. They are so ignorant that when told they would have to phone the head office in Auckland they hung up before my staff member got to the Auckland part. No legit business would treat a prospective client this way. I am considering going to the Police to file a report regarding the ongoing phone calls as they are beginning to disrupting business.

  37. Celina
    September 16, 2008

    Name being used now is Savio. Also this scam was on Campbell on TV in the last week or so. We’ve told him we’re not paying the bill. We signed not realising what a scam it was (we did check the website and found a listing with all our data – correctly). Good scammers obviously for those who aren’t looking too deeply.

    Campbell live had discussions with a secretary from NBO who had questions about statistics, but never got straight or accurate answers.

  38. NboScammer
    September 16, 2008

    the statistic are made up! 579 hits sound familar
    There is no way to track the hits unless you have a website link

  39. September 16, 2008

    Regrettably we got hit by this crowd (NBO) I smelt a rat but unfortunately our Director is a trusting and kind soul (and with a successful business) and with a cursery glance at NBO’s website faxed back the form.
    We have lodged a complaint with MoCA and would like to know how we lodge a complaint with the Police. Needless to say we will not be paying and have demanded they remove our listing (doubt very much if that will happen) We will also be informing, via our newsletter, all our clients of this scam.

  40. September 19, 2008

    Received about 6 calls to my mobile yesterday all showing 000000 as the number calling. A couple of minutes later there’d be a call to my land-line. Each time I answered they’d hang up. I rang Vodafone & Telecom to try & trace the calls; they reckoned it was someone from overseas trying to ring. I contacted my daughter, quite concerned (but no emergency).
    Later in the day someone from NBO rang – same number showed (he denied he’d rung before).
    I didn’t remember listing 2 years ago & couldn’t understand him (strong accent). He said he’d ring tomorrow (today). He rang a few moments ago and went through his spiel; I went on line to their web site and found my listing.

    They were willing to ‘renew’ my listing for only $150 for 2 years (new customers are $400 pa !!!) But I had to respond by midday (90 minutes away). I asked why? “So Head Office can process it.” That’s no reason. “Because he’d be dating it today.” I said I wouldn’t be rushing a decision and may not ‘renew’. He said to fax back by 4pm would be okay.

    He faxed through a contract form & info sheet. Twice.
    I did some research & found your site – phew! Thanks guys

  41. Melinda
    September 19, 2008

    This might be legit, but has anyone heard of ‘whoisthere’? or ‘Who is there’.?? I can’t find it online, but they just rung us about an online listing.

  42. anonymous
    September 23, 2008

    i wouldnt believe a word that sonia says!! shes a minipulative b*%#h and has no respect at all. I bet her and shallandra are still together and shes all shit about regretting ever being with nbo. I believe that now nbos under heat they are trying to start up a new scamming company with all these other sites that are coming up.as a former employee of nbo, i wish to inform that all the other ex employees that have commented on this blog are ABSOLUTELY RIGHT, sonia wud pressure her employees to get sales, everything we were told to say to the people we wud ring were absolute lies.i didnt last there long but the time i did, sonia and shallendra wud pay out mega bucks to the people that got most sales. she had no respect for her employees and the pnes she did respect were probably her spies. nbo needs to b shutdown. i know they have opened up a call centre in india now and thats y all these indian with accents are calling yous. maybe its to get the heat off the call centre in ak city. dnt trust nbo!

  43. Stuar
    September 26, 2008

    had about 15 calls from these idiots and have been
    asked to remove our number from their database on about 10 of these occasions. Mr Angry took over me and I slammed the phone down on them after threatening to reports them under the unsolicited electronic communication act (though I am not sure that this is the right approach – Anybody got any comments on this one). Their supervisor called back twice to ask our company name to flag as a do not call. I pointed out to the super that they actually asked for our GM personally and the fact they had called 3 times in 5 minutes – go figure. So just for the Stupidity at NBO I gave them our Company Name then told them where to get off!!!! By the way they are telling all that you site got 576 hits over a certain time period. If our site only got 576 hits in their suggested time period we would consider this poor peformance. As it was we were never listed with them. Beware they have been investigated by the Commerce Commission!!!

  44. Sarah
    October 1, 2008

    They are still doing this!
    I just got off the phone from NBO after ignoring their stupid fax again and the girl asked why i dont want to be involved and i said – the bad press, not getting any returns from it, never actually signing up for it! and we are not interested in being involved in your scam!
    What will it take to stop them??????

  45. October 2, 2008

    plz dont renew your listings its all scam and the call centre is also based in India……Recently i had a call from Maz said I am already listed with NBO and said to renew my listing for further 2 more years of listings and i asked where are you calling from he said Auckland but when i asked him where are youuuuu calling from he said India and its a scam NBO s…ks

  46. […] story). Not sure if we were singled out but it took us two days to shake them off. See here. And here – this later thread is from 2005. This from the same site is a bit techie. And […]

  47. Melinda
    October 6, 2008

    I dont believe it… No contact for almost a year and today and INVOICE arrived! We wont be paying I can say that now!

  48. George
    October 6, 2008

    I have an invoice for services I did not accept, unsolicited without the disclaimer – so what gives? This must be fraudlent and false invoicing.

  49. October 7, 2008

    I payed there invoice after an employie signed up with NBO WHEN i WAS OUT OF THE COUNTRY.They totally harassed me for 3 months, sending faxes on the hour nearly every day& threating to take me to the debt collectors.Now they have started sending the invoices & faxes again,only 9 months after I had payed for a 2 year listing.How do you get these B#@%**ds to stop,? I’ve had a guts full. Any advise

  50. Kate
    October 8, 2008

    Just spent about 15 mins reading through all these comments, what a shocker! And it’s been going on for so long! I keep getting invoices from them every couple of months for the 2 year directory listing at a charge of $96 – even though I stupidly PAID this in May, when taking on the role of Office Manager of the company I’m in now!

    Phonecalls go straight through to answer machine… emails go unanswered. I wish there was some way to get the original amount paid back – they SHOULD at the very least be able to refund my original payment minus six months if I request our listing to be taken off, but somehow I doubt even that will happen!

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