Notaro, CNBC touting Money Talks as winner

Posted: August 31, 2013 in General
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CONTINUED from PART 1 of this series…

By W.G. Ramirez (TWITTER: @AP_WG)


Once released from prison, and needing to feed his appetite for making stacks of cash, Notaro was introduced to the sports-tout business by close friends who were working at a couple of the better-known telemarketing rooms at the time.

“I knew there was another telemarketing racket to where people were making good money, so I was looking for another gig where I could use my sales talent to become successful in something because as a kid I felt like that was all I knew,” Notaro said.

After working in a couple of sales rooms in Las Vegas, he eventually opened up a one-man office in Northwest Las Vegas and started to learn the nuances of the business. Eventually, he ended up at 4004 Schiff Drive – where he currently operates out of – and says he’s been operating under the same business license for nearly 13 years. According to filings with the Secretary of State, Notaro is the President, Secretary and Treasurer of Executive VIP Services International, which operates VIP Sports Las Vegas.

“You’ve got boiler rooms, and you’ve got licensed and bonded rooms – people that do everything on the up and up; I take pride in being that person, always have,” Notaro said. “When you compare me to Vin Diesel (referring to the movie Boiler Room), it’s hurtful. This isn’t a movie, I’ve worked my ass off legitimately to build this. I’ve never been a guy to market and advertise. I’ve never advertised ’72 percent, call my phone,’ like I’m a fraud or lying to people. I’ve never advertised or ran ads in my life.”

Maybe not, but the original “sizzle reel” made by Left Turn Productions – the same production company that made Mayweather’s documentary ’30 Days in May’ – promoted an outrageously big winning percentage by “Stevens” and riled up nearly everyone that decided to voice their opinion, including Las Vegas Review Journal columnist John L. Smith, who wrote two columns – one that introduced the upcoming series, and a second in which he interviewed a longtime gambling consultant and math and probability expert. Notaro admitted the publicized percentage(s) were Hollywood stunts gone bad for promotional purposes, and acknowledged he has not hit that percentage during his time as a sports tout. But he too got riled up – more than any other time during the scrutiny he’s received – since his show, according to him, is about his life and the sports-tout business operation, and not winning percentages or handicapping.

“That was exactly a clip from my TV show,” Notaro said. “That wasn’t me making a website and then going out and spending money advertising that I’m 72 percent. Even though people do that, I’ve never advertised in my life. My show is not about percentages. … My show is basically about bringing you in (my) world.

“The only people right now that are really bashing me are guys in the industry; guys that probably want a TV show or guys that used to be able to pay for advertising and have people call them and make millions of dollars. Those days are gone, so there’s gonna be guys a little upset that I’ve landed a show on CNBC when advertising in this business is so hard to come by because the day of spending a million dollars to get three back in return are over. And it’s fine for people to bash me, but I just want a fair shake. I want people to watch the show and give me a fair shake because they’re going to love it.”


And so, a sports-tout business reality series that has generated as much controversy and drama within the sports-betting world as Miley Cyrus’ twerk session on last week’s Video Music Awards is set to debut on CNBC in a little less than two weeks, on Sept. 10.


Darin Notaro, aka Steve Stevens, makes his debut on CNBC’s Money Talks on Sept. 10.

“I’m very proud in what I’ve done and how I’ve succeeded and NBC is all about giving me a fair shake,” Notaro said. “They’re completely aware of everything and thank God for them because they believe that somebody changes. And I’ve really changed into a different person that people should be excited to see.”

The 40-year-old Las Vegas-native said viewers will see him actually get on the phone and deal with customers personally. Notaro said when he makes his sales pitch, it’s always about a big game. He doesn’t shy away from the fact it takes a hardcore sales pitch to get someone on the other end of the telephone to agree to send him money. But he also added he has never used his friendships with Mayweather or other professional athletes he’s met or knows because they live in Las Vegas during the off-season. Two reasons, according to Notaro. One, he said, is because he wants his players knowing they’re playing with Steve Stevens – and he’s the guy making them money, not his friends. And two, he’d never cross the line and incriminate the professional-team athletes he knows by comingling their names in the sports-betting business. Perhaps, maybe, that would be proof of one lesson learned about doing business the right way.

“I don’t get information from locker rooms,” Notaro said. “I know NBA players, I know Major League players, I know all that. I don’t get any information from any of them. I don’t claim to be some guy that knows a guy – none of that. I’m Darin Notaro, I’m a family man, I’m a good guy. I’ve got a lot of friends and family, I like to eat good, I hang out. I’ve done it all. I’m born and raised in Las Vegas, and I pretty much raised hell early.

“But Steve Stevens is a guy that’s all about his business, he’s all about making money, he’s all about feeding his family and he’s all about putting all his problems at the door when he goes into work. That’s what a master closer does, they focus 110 percent on the business and give it all they’ve got during the business shift. I don’t get paid unless (my customers) do… the biggest sale is getting the guy to trust you, then showing him results; that’s the hardest part. I’ve built my foundation from the bottom up. I do outbound sales. Convince people to give me the opportunity to showcase my talent, then my games back it up.”

This, according to him, is what we’re going to see on Money Talks; and then some.

“When these guys understand that I’m bringing viewers into the world of gaming as a whole, it’s not a competition,” Notaro said. “I’m bringing people into our world, letting ’em see it, exposing the world to it on a stock market level and letting people know there’s another option besides the stock market. I’m not telling you to stop playing stocks, but there’s another option. And a damn good one, too.

“Everything I do is on the up and up and I try to give you everything I’ve got. As long as I win more than I lose, that’s all that matters.”

Whether or not the show’s transparency will reveal that much remains to be seen. For now, Notaro and CNBC are betting they have a winner before the NFL season has even started.

READ PART 1 of this series

Special thanks goes to David Payne Purdum (@DavidPurdum) for his assistance and contribution to this report

  1. Jim Rogers says:

    Watched the show last night for the first time. What struck me most was how Stevens touted his “bookkeeper / accountant” as the best in the business – all the while, we see this lady keeping hand-written ledgers on plain paper (no software) and…get this…cutting checks to the salesmen that were HAND-WRITTEN and had no payroll stubs attached – in other words – it appears all the employees are being paid full amounts with no withholding or reporting. IRS would have found that one scene alone to be worthy of investigation.

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