Suppose I start a publicly traded LLC with a fixed address and phone line.
The business is hollow, though. One employee (me,) who does nothing.
What would happen if I successfully sold shares of the dud company?
Could I get a business going just by selling shares to raise capital, assuming I'm mainly selling to personal contacts in a Glengarry Glen Ross kind of way?
If I sold 49% of the shares at such and such a price while retaining 51% of the shares for myself, would I then be able to sell those shares for that price on the open market (i.e. not to people I've talked into it)?
That sounds odd.
You can buy everything under the sun directly, why not shares?
Middlemen are going the way of travel agents.
I was thinking of doing this repeatedly; setting up increasingly non-dud companies, pumping up the share price, and cashing out to make a new company, leaving only one true lemon and plenty of well-branded niche businesses in my wake.
Well, to register on the market requires filing documentation. Also, any shareholder of a business has the right to request the business financials or through a proxy such as a lawyer or CPA.
All it takes is one screw up and you are in jail for a very long time, and probably personally bankrupt. In cases when you are attempting to defraud someone, then any liability protection from the corporate veil will be pierced.
It's basically called securities fraud- various 3 letter government agencies don't take too kindly to that stuff.
And in order get listed on the OTC market, you'll still need a shit ton of documentation and falsified financial statements. If you can can fake those documents, you'll probably end up making more money creating and managing those documents for an actual company with lower likelyhood of going to prison.
Do you know anything about regulated markets? This shit isn't the wild wild west. Everything you do will be scrutinized, the SEC demands that you hire a certified accountant to file quarterly reports on your company for all potential buyers to see, and good luck doing the whole 51% dump thing without going to federal prison for fraud.
Nobody invests in hollow businesses. They'll look at one quarterly filing and see that your company is trash and doesn't do an damn thing.