Spotlight on SailBreeze Sailing School’s Online Activities
Hello Truth-Seekers & Fact-Checkers, here is a follow up to a report I posted to a Facebook page in February 2022 - The Truth about Roland C. & SailBreeze Sailing School. The original article, in summary, describes how Roland Choy (aka Roland Xu), past SailQuest student, took advantage of my friendship and the SailQuest market position and is attempting to establish a fraudulent copy-cat business at Ocean Marina, SailBreeze Sailing School Thailand (currently encroaching on the legitimately registered SailQuest Sailing School Thailand brand). He has also opened 2 other related businesses - SailBreeze Yacht Charters and SailBreeze Marine (yacht repair & maintenance service).
I wrote that article as events were unfolding, when it became apparent to me that Roland had lied about his website and business plans and that he would become a competitor rather than a partner, and that he had taken active measures to create a copy-cat business, leveraging and attempting to damage SailQuest assets for his own benefit.
This realization was a shock to me and completely unexpected, mainly because it went against the impression I had formed of Roland's character. He had convincingly presented himself as loyal, trustworthy and almost incapable of being deceitful. At this point, however, considering the origins of SailBreeze and continuing observations on a wide range of deceptive, fraudulent and potentially illegal business practices, it has become obvious that underhanded methods are the rule and even preferred over fair business practices. Admittedly, I may have missed some clues into Roland's intentions, but he played his part well, as he rolled out a carefully considered and implemented business plan which included a variety of black-had tactics built in from the start.
Here are some examples of Roland's dirty work:
Google (and other) Maps false locations: SailBreeze Sailing School Thailand (IYT courses & training), SailBreeze Yacht Charter and SailBreeze Marine (yacht maintenance & repair services) does not have an office or physical location other than Roland's laptop and mobile phone. Of course customers would like to know if the company they are dealing with online actually exists so, in violation of Google and others policy, Roland places false locations on Google, TripAdvisor, Facebook and a remarkable number of online maps.
If you look closely at these deceptive locations, you will notice they are just a few meters outside the Ocean Marina property. This is because the marina manager, in an effort to keep freeloaders and scammers out and to protect actual rent paying tenants privileges, told Roland to get his "pins" out of the marina where he had originally placed them. So slippery Roland set up shop on the vacant property next door...
More false SailBreeze location maps:
In an effort to make his illegitimate company appear to be long established, Roland has posted to many other map websites and business directories, getting the SailBreeze name out there, hoping it would replace the SailQuest brand. Since Roland has no credentials or experience in the yachting industry, he makes huge and outrageous claims, thinking no one would challenge anyone who dared to say so much. Roland and SailBreeze are always the "best" the "coolest" the "most established"... Here is a direct quote from the SailBreeze website (www.sailbreeze.org):
"Since our founding, our business has had the opportunity to help countless clients acquire foundational skills, develop new techniques and confidently move forward in their quest to learn more about sailing. Our unique approach has made us known as one of the best Marine Service Providers in the Pattaya area."
So successful - SailBreeze has acheived the dream of any business, how many must it be? Hundreds? Thousands? Millions? I will be generous and guess 25 or less. And given Roland's complete lack of knowledge and experience as a "Marine Service Provider", even Roland would admit that, if there was such a field, he would be very far from the best.
Roland is a liar, big time.
Fake Online Reviews: Legitimate businesses work hard to get positive reviews from actual clients posted on Google My Business, TripAdvisor and other review sites. Over 80% of customers who book online services refer to these reviews. My business, SailQuest Sailing School, has earned it's 5 star reviews by providing exceptional services. So it is particularly annoying when a wannabe competitor posts 100% fake reviews where ever possible. Roland Choy is an experienced player in the fake review game.
Fake SailBreeze reviews on multiple Google listings:
SailBreeze Marine - 3 reviews, all fake, created by Roland himself:
SailBreeze Yacht Charters - 5 reviews, 4 fake, 1 questionable:
SailBreeze Sailing School - 31 reviews of which 30 are 5 star. Many schools who have been in business for over a decade have far fewer reviews and the vast majority on this page are completely bogus, posted by Roland using fake profiles or by others who have never used SailBreeze services. Fake reviews are Roland's trademark and this page is one of his masterpieces - www.google.com/maps/place/SailBreeze+Sailing+School+Thailand
Fake SailBreeze reviews on TripAdvisor: a companies TA listing should be a representation of what customers can expect when they book services. Here Roland has posted dozens of fake photos of bikini clad models, luxurious yachts and happy smiling people having fun on boats, but not on SailBreeze boats. Unwilling to earn a positive review or wait for real customers to post real reviews, Roland violates TripAdvisor policy, a policy he agreed to when they allowed him open an account and create his page.
SailBreeze TripAdvisor - 2 reviews, both fake - https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g293919-d18455088-Reviews-SailBreeze_Sailing_School_Thailand-Pattaya_Chonburi_Province.html
Roland's fake reviews are easy to spot, try it for yourself. Go to any SailBreeze review page and look for reviewers that have only 1 review posted and those that have 2 or 3 which are all reviews of SailBreeze. Seems a bit suspicious, right? Take a look at the names of reviewers, many are obvious fakes, like the girl who has the same name as his boat. I won't ruin your fun, how many fake names can you find? Now read the reviews... does it read like a real review or is it more like an advert with expressions like "the best sailing school in Ocean Marina", "highly recommended to anyone looking for the best yacht charter in Thailand" or "the captain was really cool, anyone would feel safe sailing with him"
Here is a completely fake review, written and posted by Roland on TripAdvisor:
... and when you know it is Roland writing the review, reading the owner response is hilarious. See the TripAdvisor review Roland posted on TripAdvisor as SailBreeze, again violating the websites policies, and read the owner comment... it's a classic!
So, meet Jane Kross aka Jane K. aka Jayne aka Roland Choy:
The Jane Kross identity is one of Roland's favorite fake accounts. He has used this account to put up positive reviews on all SailBreeze review platforms.
The Jane Kross identity is one of Roland's favorite fake accounts. He has used this account to put up positive reviews on all SailBreeze review platforms.
But building his business is only part of the plan. In some cases the ultimate goal of a copy-cat business is to replace the company you are trying to imitate.
So in an obvious and direct attack, Roland posted unflattering photos of a SailQuest yacht as it is undergoing a refit on the SailQuest review page via his Jane Kross identity:
Thanks, Roland, nice one...
Facebook: Almost all photos on the SailBreeze Facebook pages, certainly all of those featuring sexy beach and boat models and flashy yachts, are posted to intentionally mislead followers and visitors. Again, Roland falsely claims to have a business located in Ocean Marina, using the Ocean Marina address and claiming some prime office space with a fraudulent position, just a few meters outside Ocean Marina property, placed on the Facebook map.
SailBreeze intellectual property rights violations - Plagiarism: Unsurprisingly, Roland is not above violating intellectual property rights, nearly exactly quoting SailQuest Sailing School text (and wrongly associating with IYT) in this SailBreeze Facebook post -
Other examples of outright plagiarism can be found in SailBreeze Facebook posts or website content, like this, taken directly from the SailQuest website and copied to the SailBreeze website www.sailbreeze.org:
Lacking creative writing skills and having very little sailing experience to draw on, Roland grabs little snippets, phrases and slogans from SailQuest posts and website pages, hoping that stealing from real sailors will help him sound authentic. He certainly needs help in this area as reading one of his original posts, if you can find one, will have you wondering if the author has ever set foot aboard a real boat, as he goes on about peacefulness and relaxing and other fantasies only a landsman would have regarding the realities of sailing. He tip's his hand here also, find reviews mentioning beautiful, relaxing, peaceful, magical.... yep, more fake reviews.
SailBreeze & misleading IYT affiliation: Roland claims affiliation with IYT (International Yacht Training) on the SailBreeze website, the SailBreeze Google My Business site, TripAdvisor and Facebook pages and in various items posted around the web. This is unfair to legitimate IYT Partner Schools, like SailQuest Sailing School, who pay annual fees and are required to meet certain standards - registered IYT Instructors, approved facilities and training yachts, etc and who pay annual membership fees for the privilege of associating themselves with this globally recognized brand.
SailBreeze IYT on Google My Business site -
March 2022 IYT Sailing School in Pattaya - Mar 12, 2022 – Mar 22, 2022 This is a fun, fast-paced, action-packed intensive course combining both Crew & Bareboat Skipper Sailing courses. Learn to Sail with out Zero to Hero Fast Track Program and get certified to be a Bareboat Skipper.
SailBreeze IYT on TripAdvisor -
About SailBreeze Sailing School Thailand - Welcome to SailBreeze, the Best Sailing School Ocean Marina in the Pattaya, Chon Buri area in Thailand. Our "Learn to Sail" Fast Track Zero to Hero Adventure Starts here. At SailBreeze, we offer the internationally recognised yachting certificates from International Yacht Training (IYT) from our professional qualified instructors.
SailBreeze IYT on SailBreeze Sailing School Thailand homepage -
"Welcome to SailBreeze Sailing School. We offer those who want to "Learn to Sail" and obtain the International Yacht Training (IYT) certification, the "Zero to Hero Fast Track" Sailing Program to become a Bareboat Skipper…"
There are many other examples of SailBreeze associating itself directly with IYT and promoting IYT courses including an entire lineup of scheduled course dates on his Facebook Events section, events Roland created to nearly exactly copy the SailQuest Events format.
The reality of the situation is that SailBreeze is not an IYT partner school but under the copy-cat SailBreeze brand, Roland is working on a commission basis with Island Spirit Sailing School Thailand, a registered IYT Partner School. SailQuest and Island Spirit have enjoyed over a decade of fair and mostly friendly competition, but it seems they could not resist the chance to have SailBreeze, so named to encroach on the legitimate SailQuest brand, help out with recruiting, even though they should be well aware that SailBreeze is using a variety of unethical business practices to reach its goals.
Comments on Fair Competition: Competition between companies who offer similar products and services is an expected aspect of running a business. In the short term, there may be some pushing and shoving with various strategies, promotions and marketing efforts tried and tested in a friendly or not-so-friendly battle for individual customers. In this day-to-day competition there can often be a winner and a loser, creating friction between the rivals.
In the long term, however, competing businesses can help each other by drawing attention to their activities, services, products and areas of operation as the individual marketing efforts combine and work together on a global scale to increase general interest, public awareness and ultimately, overall market sizes. A good example of this long term effect can be found right here in the Thailand sailing school market, which over the past decade has seen an increase in competing businesses along with increasing numbers of website visitors, generated leads and, putting the Covid disaster aside, bookings.
With that in mind, I am not fundamentally against existing or future competitors in the local sailing school market. To those who have the skills and motivation to carve out a position in the local sailing school market, I say welcome, there is room for us all. We all have our unique appeal, style and strengths and while we market and promote ourselves individually, together we increase our local and worldwide audience. We who are brave enough or foolish enough to face the challenges of the sailing school business can respect each other and stand together on common interests. And we should respect and protect the business itself, understanding that there are indeed rules of engagement and limits on what can be done in our attempt to succeed.
But when accepted business practices are traded for black-hat tactics, when the focus is on posting fake reviews instead of delivering a quality product, when every aspect of fair and friendly competition has been ignored and no respect is given to those you would compete against - then you are unwelcome to compete with me or with other respectable, legitimate sailing schools near or far. Because when we allow 1 player to cheat and lie and make false claims it is unfair to us all - the cheater must go or we must all become cheaters...
Roland Choy and his corrupt SailBreeze businesses are the definition of the word: cheater. He is provably guilty of multiple underhanded methods that are easily available to any business owner but nearly always rejected because of the dishonesty and lack of moral standing required. Anyone who chooses to start a company with a copy-cat name, false locations, fake reviews and stolen intellectual property, when a legitimate path is easily available has given a clear picture of his true character.
Call to Action: SailBreeze online violations are a matter of fact, on the record and ongoing with Roland posting fake reviews and misleading photos on a nearly daily basis. From the start until now, Roland has treated competing sailing schools unfairly by ignoring accepted business practice and knowingly cheating in efforts to attract customers Roland's business model and practices are not an attempt to be innovative or discover new marketing strategies, but a clear effort to disregard the rules of accepted business practices, violate partner website's policies and to gain an unfair and un-sportsman-like advantage on competing businesses. Entirely consumed by self interest, Roland Choy and SailBreeze are bad news for the sailing school industry, locally and beyond.
For these reasons and on the evidence detailed in this report, I am calling for the following actions:
I am calling on Roland Choy and his corrupt SailBreeze business venture to exit the sailing school profession completely and entirely and immediately. Has has had the same opportunity that is available to anyone else who wants to get into the sailing school game and he has used his opportunity to intentionally and knowingly cause harm, abuse policies and take advantage of competitors and customers alike. He is undeserving and unworthy to stand with those of us who have the common decency and respect for each other to play by the accepted rules of engagement which allow us to maintain an environment that is civil and productive for us all. Continuing to implement dishonest business methods under a copy-cat name increases the long-term effects to SailQuest Sailing School. Continuing to misrepresent as an experienced sailor, IYT partner school or legitimate sailing school business can effect others who can rightfully make the same claims.
In addition to immediate departure from the sailing school business, I am also calling for Roland Choy to stop any and all use of the SailBreeze name immediately and to delete and remove any and all traces of the name from the internet without exception. This illegitimately conceived entity was doomed from misguided beginnings, reeking of corruption and deception that will soon be completely exposed, a bloated corpse risen to the surface, evidence uncovered in unflattering ways… I extend a last polite request to disappear SailBreeze, the name stolen to intentionally encroach on my SailQuest brand.
I am calling on Island Spirit Sailing School to break off all relations with Roland Choy and SailBreeze immediately. By allowing Roland and SailBreeze to promote your IYT and other products you are rewarding undeserving activity. I would like to think you are above most of Roland's black-hat marketing tricks but by contracting with and encouraging this corrupt individual and his low-level tactics you are equally guilty in gaining advantage thru unacceptable means. Do the right thing and show respect for yourselves, your competitors and the sailing school business in general. I hope your sense for fair play will prevail.
I am calling on Ocean Marina to ban Roland Choy and SailBreeze from conducting any business of any type within the Ocean Marina property limits. He has demonstrated a disregard for marina policy by falsely claiming Ocean Marina as his business address in multiple online listings and maps and shown a willingness to encroach on and disrespect the rights of other Ocean Marina businesses, having already done so in provable, harmful actions directed at SailQuest. Terminating or refusing to renew his membership should also be considered.
I am calling on International Yacht Training (IYT) to protect it's own interests and ban Roland Choy from participating in the IYT program in any capacity at all. No partner school memberships, no sales of IYT courses either independently or thru contracting with registered IYT partner schools, no promoting IYT courses on his website or social media pages including courses run by other IYT schools. It is also recommended that an IYT policy be developed where IYT courses must be promoted by the partner school which is offering the course and not by third party entities. When third party representation is allowed, then 1 partner school could manufacture dozens of brands all selling the same courses and diluting the product and placing false competition in the market, unbalancing fair competition. (Thank you IYT Worldwide, for your swift and positive actions, see PPS. below)
Finally, I am calling on all readers of this report to do your own research. I have made bold claims against Roland Choy and his copy-cat SailBreeze Sailing School Thailand and other SailBreeze entities. I have spent many hours following Roland's steps on the internet and personally observing his activities around Ocean Marina. I am confident that the info in this report is accurate at this time and have preserved copies and screenshots to back it up. But don't take my word for it. Follow the links I have included here and then dig deeper. I think you will be able to see some obvious fakes with just a little effort. If you continue you will be overwhelmed by the scope of Roland's brazen deception. Then, when you are satisfied with your research, your assistance in correcting the situation would be greatly appreciated. The most effective actions can be found here:
Report data or content errors on Google Maps: https://support.google.com/maps/answer/3094088?hl=en
How to identify and remove competitors fake Google reviews:
How to report fake reviews on TripAdvisor: https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTopic-g1-i12105-k10760322-How_to_report_an_establishment_with_fake_reviews-Tripadvisor_Support.html
Conclusion: I mentioned that I was shocked to learn Roland had taken active measures to create a copy-cat business. He choose a name that was nearly identical to SailQuest Sailing School Thailand while based in the same Ocean Marina location in an effort to gain credibility and association with an established brand and hoping to mislead customers who may be looking for SailQuest into clicking a similar name. Also, at the time, he had his false SailBreeze location pin carefully placed almost on top of the legitimate SailQuest pin so the SailQuest location would only appear when a viewer was zoomed in to the max. He was also using SailQuest slogans and had taken data from the SailQuest website to place on his own website.
Do a web-search for "copy-cat business" and you will find it's a well documented and occasionally successful business strategy, usually done anonymously to avoid repercussions from the business being ripped-off. Whether a copy-cat business succeeds or not there is a strong chance that the effort will negatively effect the successful business being copied by diluting the brand, providing an inferior product and/or misleading potential customers who believe they are dealing with the established brand. There are many documented examples where an established brand went out of business when a copy-cat brand succeeded in displacing them.
I don't mean to be overly possessive of the SailQuest name, it's just a few letters stuck together in a way I felt could be effective in my business. I don't own those letters any more than I own the entire alphabet. But when you take those letters in a certain order and style and place them in front of sailing school Thailand, something unique has been created, and the author is entitled to author-level ownership.
In the current marketing environment, where keywords and phrases, along with recognizable branding, are critical to success, you can be 100% sure that an unethical copy-cat business start-up, following your business model, targeting your customer base, operating from the same marina location under a brand that is only a few letters away from from what had been your unique and distinctive brand is not looking out for your best interests.
Roland had decided to target SailQuest Sailing School, possibly years ago. He positioned himself to learn what he could for me thru his bogus friendship. He quietly worked to develop his website and social media presence. When the stage was set he stopped being friendly with me and became deceptive about his activities. Eventually the truth came out. I was not in shock for long. I told Roland that if he had decided to start his own school he was welcome to it. I politely asked him to select another name, one that wouldn't be so easily confused for the brand I had worked long and hard to develop. But benefiting from the SailQuest name was part of his plan. Roland's informed choice to copy my business and abuse the SailQuest brand by obscuring it with a very close copy was an intentional effort to attack and harm SailQuest. This fact does not bother Roland at all and he considers my losses an acceptable price to pay for his own success.
Now that some time has past since SailBreeze exposed itself and has been operating as a rule-breaking business concern, I have come to realize that the SailQuest brand remains intact, un-stolen and un-stealable. Roland did not get all he had targeted. But an awareness of Roland's intentions also remains intact. I am not a person who survives an attack and then forgets about it, especially when the attacker is still on the loose. Re-read this report - does it appear I have forgotten about Roland Choy?
Wrap-up: I have been sitting in this chair for an awfully long time and have had no joy in writing this report. It was something I needed to do, for myself and to put on record my view of the events described herein. It would be nice if the effort draws attention to the matter and that others take action to set things straight.
There are calls of action to be considered - follow your heart and do what you feel is appropriate. If there are any questions or you would like to discuss any aspect of the situation, please contact me.
And so it ends, for now. Another update may follow, tomorrow, next week or in a year and a day. I don't know how events will unfold or where the story will end, but i hope there is a happy ending for everyone, including Roland. Love and peace to all.
PS. - Foreign Business Act: It is hard to imagine that anyone whom has promoted their business and left a clear record of questionable activities online, who is intentionally interfering with the operations of legitimate and legally registered Thai companies, would do so while operating in violation of Thai legal requirements:
Section 37 - Any foreigner who operates a business in violation of section 6, section 7 or section 8 shall be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to a fine of one hundred thousand Baht to one million Baht or to both, and the Court shall order the cessation of the business operation or the cessation of the undertaking or order the cessation of shareholding or partnership, as the case may be.
My search of the DBD database (a complete and up to date list of Thai registered companies) included variations on spelling, managing directors, industries, etc. with similar results.
Having just transferred over 50 thousand Thai baht to my business accountant for the required annual business report and visa renewal and considering the other costs of running a legitimate business and registered IYT partner school, it would be especially disturbing to discover Roland and SailBreeze have been operating without these expenses. I honestly don’t believe anyone would be so foolish, even Roland.
An in-depth investigation is underway. Stay tuned…
PPS: - IYT Worldwide has taken some action to deal with SailBreeze: IYT does not tolerate unauthorized use of the IYT brand. Roland Choy & SailBreeze Sailing School have been added to the IYT sh*tlist:
and an article was added to the IYT Worldwide News section:
They have contacted Roland directly to have him remove all mention of association with IYT from his website and posts, including all relative older posts.
Roland has not complied and many items can be found with SailBreeze offering IYT courses and claiming ties to International Yacht Training. Further action is being considered.