From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Sunrider International
Privately held company
Industry Direct selling
Founded Orem, Utah in 1982
Founders Tei-Fu Chen and Oi-Lin Chen
Headquarters Torrance, California
Products Herbal food and beverages, nutritional supplements, sports and weight management, skin care, personal care, oral care, home care

Sunrider Corporation, or Sunrider International, is a privately owned multi-level marketing company headquartered in Torrance, California. Sunrider lists thousands of franchise stores and tens of thousands of distributors internationally. Sunrider manufactures health, beauty, food, and household products at four manufacturing plants: Southern California, China, Singapore, and Taiwan.[1] Sunrider does business in 42 countries,[2] and operates offices in 22 countries.[3]

Company history[edit]

Sunrider was founded in 1982 in Orem, Utah in the United States by the Taiwan-born herbalist, Tei-Fu Chen. In the late 1980s, the company moved its headquarters to the Los Angeles area. It has since expanded into an international corporation with about forty offices worldwide.[citation needed]

In 1995 Sunrider International and its owner were charged with orchestrating a massive tax and customs fraud scheme to evade tens of millions of dollars in taxes. Chen and the Sunrider Corporation were indicted by a federal grand jury in a 20-count indictment charging them with conspiracy, tax evasion, filing of false corporate tax returns, and smuggling. In 1997, the Chens entered into a plea bargain with the court on the charges of tax evasion and customs fraud. Tei-Fu Chen served nearly a year in minimum security prison while his wife, Oi-Lin Chen, served six months of home detention. The couple paid over $100 million in back taxes, interest and penalties and an additional $4 million to avoid forfeiting the items they were accused of smuggling and undervaluing.[4]

In 2007 Sunrider purchased the Holiday Inn Asiaworld Taipei and renamed it the Sunworld Dynasty Hotel Taipei, and expressed plans to purchase more hotels in Asia.[5] Sunrider has over 7,000 retail stores in China.[6]

Sunrider's founders were jointly named No. 6 on the Goldsea 100 list of America's top Asian entrepreneurs.[when?][7]


Sunrider is a multi-level marketing company which is primarily known for selling herbal products such as diet pills, teas, and health snacks. As of 2009 the company was reported to have an annual revenue of over $700 million, and 300,000 distributors.[4]

Stephen Barrett has accused the company of making false claims regarding its products' therapeutic effects, and reports legal problems the company has faced from the FDA and state of California regarding false medical claims. In addition, Barret has said that Sunrider distributors do not have the proper qualifications to advise their customers about the products' use.[8][9] The company has instructed distributors to avoid medical claims, and no longer publicizes any such claims.[4][10]

In 1992 a jury in Phoenix, Arizona, concluded that Sunrider had violated Arizona's racketeering laws and out of court Sunrider settled for $650,000 to a woman who claimed that Sunrider products have had a negative effect on her health.[8][11]

Hotel Business[edit]

Sunrider owns and operates a hotel chain called Sunworld Dynasty, having acquired several hotels in Asia. In Beijing, the hotels are the Sunworld Dynasty Hotel (on Wangfujing) and the Sunworld Hotel, located next door. In Taipei, Taiwan, the Sunworld Dynasty Hotel is one of the largest hotels in the city.[citation needed]

Sunrider acquired the 297-room SLS Beverly Hills for about $200 million in mid 2015. The hotel is located at 465 S. La Cienega Blvd. [12]

Manufacturing of Products[edit]

Sunrider International researches, develops, and manufactures all of its own products and does not outsource any production. The manufacturing process begins with buying raw herbs, sanitizing/cleansing the herbs, refining and concentrating, and packaging.[1] This process occurs at all of Sunrider's four manufacturing sites in Guangzhou, China; Taiwan; Singapore; and Los Angeles. A fifth manufacturing plant is under construction[when?] in Kunshan, China, in the metropolitan area of Shanghai, China. The Kunshan plant will have nearly 1,000,000 square feet (93,000 m2) of manufacturing space. The Los Angeles manufacturing plant was opened in July 2008 and also has nearly 1,000,000 square feet (93,000 m2) of manufacturing facilities and space.[13]

In 1987, salmonella bacteria were found in one of the company's products.[14] Since 1987, Sunrider has reported that it has improved sanitary conditions.[15]

Sunrider products are both kosher and halal, making them marketable and available to the Jewish and Islamic communities.[16]


  1. ^ a b "Product Lines". Sunrider. Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  2. ^ Joyce Huang (2008-12-08). "Chinese Herbals, By Way of Utah". Forbes Magazine. Retrieved 2009-03-12. 
  3. ^ "Company Overview". Sunrider. Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  4. ^ a b c Hsu, Tiffany (9 September 2009). "Sunrider aims to put tax scandal behind it". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 20 October 2013. 
  5. ^ "Sunworld Dynasty chief eyes expansion". Taipei Times. 2007. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  6. ^ "Sunrider Enters China's Hotel Sector". China Hospitality News. 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-12. 
  7. ^ "Tei-Fu Chen | America's Most Successful Asian Entrepreneurs | GoldSea 100". Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  8. ^ a b Barrett, Stephen. "Sunrider and the Law (1992)". MLM Watch. Retrieved 20 October 2013. 
  9. ^ "The Mirage of Multilevel Marketing". 2008-01-21. Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  10. ^ "Sunrider International's Legal News". Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  11. ^ "Acupuncture, Naturopathy, and Other "Health Care" Wanna-Be's". Veterinarywatch. Retrieved 2012-03-13. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ Torrance-based Sunrider opens plant in Harbor Gateway
  14. ^ The Sunrider Corporation - Company History
  15. ^ Archived October 31, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]