Ocean Avenue Review: Health, nutrition & vacations
Ocean Avenue is an MLM company operating in the health and nutrition niche of the industry.
The company operates out of Utah in the US but reportedly will also launch with satellite offices in Canada and Indonesia with prelaunch scheduled to kick off in about a week.
Heading up Ocean Avenue are co-founders Fred Ninow and Ken Dunn (photo right).
Ninow, credited as being a ‘a self made entrepreneur and former Investment Banker’ with 29 years experience. MLM wise Ninow’s biggest accomplishment would easily be co-founding Max International (also known as “Max GXL”, their flagship product).
Max International launched in early 2007 and market products focused on ‘glutathione’ distribution to the body. As a co-founder, Ninow is credited with leading Max International’s sales team to generate ‘over 100 million in revenue in 3 short years’.
I’m not entirely sure what happened after those three years as I was unable to find any information on why or specifically when (ballpark 2010) Ninow left Max International.
Ken Dunn on the otherhand is credited on the Ocean Avenue website as being invovled in ‘mortgages, importing, property management and investigative policing’.
MLM wise Dunn initially worked with Ninow in Max International as the “master distributor” but in 2010 (around the same time Ninow departed) left Max to join MLM company ‘EvolvHealth’.
In an EvolvHealth official company blog post, Chief Marketing Officer Jonathan Gilliam wrote
After a thorough review of more than 100 companies, the addition of Mr. Ken Dunn and his business partners, all top earners in the network marketing industry “is a tremendous win for the company and our Members” (partly quoting EvolvHealth founder Trey White).
Again, no idea why or when Dunn left EvolvHealth but it appears to have been only recently. Another post on the EvolvHealth company blog, dated late February 2012, credits Dunn as being a finalist in something called the “e84 Fuel Challenge”.
Read on for a full review of the Ocean Avenue MLM business opportunity.
The Ocean Avenue Product Line
As mentioned above, Ocean Avenue operate in the health and nutrition MLM niche and as such market products targeted health, nutrition, weightloss, the immune system and mental focus.
Dubbed “The King of Whey”, WheyBeyond is a nutritional supplement based on a combination of whey protein and, not surprisingly, glutathione.
Ocean Avenue claim that WheyBeyond has ‘double the ORAC antioxidant value of any superfruit on earth‘ and is an ‘all naturally flavored allowing the protein content to be maintained at an extremely high level‘.
A flavoured smoothie companion to WheyBeyond, WheySmart targets those looking to manage their weight whilst also acting as a nutrition supplement.
Empower targets the immune system with Ocean Avenue claiming it helps with autoimmunity, inflammation and anti-aging.
Out of the many benefits purported, perhaps the most curious is the claim that Empower ‘promotes the flow of qi‘.
Qi (pronounced “chi”) is defined as ‘the circulating life force whose existence and properties are the basis of much Chinese philosophy and medicine‘.
Invigorate is a dietary supplement that
act(s) as an antidepressant that helps you cope with stress while supporting serotonin production. It also helps combat Type-2 Diabetes.
Invigorate also purportedly helps promote the flow of qi.
Focus is an energy drink that ‘gives you up to six hours of sustained, non-jittery energy‘.
Ocean Avenue claims Focus is all natural, relieves fatigue, increases motivation and improves mental acuity.
The Ocean Avenue Vacation Club
Claiming to have partnered with an unspecified “world-renowned travel agency”, membership to the Ocean Avenue Vacation Club is available to Ocean Avenue customers who spend a minimum of $50 on product purchases.
Details on the Vacation Club are sketchy, save that Ocean Avenue affiliates and customers will be able to book resort accommodation and cruises.
The Ocean Avenue Compensation Plan
The Ocean Avenue compensation plan offers affiliates and wholesale customers retail and wholesale commissions, residual earnings and several bonus pools to participate in.
In order to be eligible to earn commissions, Ocean Avenue affiliates must maintain “active status”.
Being active requires affiliates to generate at least 50 Business Volume (BV) via product orders within a rolling six month period.
Ocean Avenue Membership Ranks
Within the Ocean Avenue compensation plan there are several commissions and bonus that are dependent on an affiliate’s membership rank.
There are twelve membership ranks within the Ocean Avenue compensation plan and along with their various qualification requirements, they are as follows:
- Ambassador – purchase at least 90 PV upon joining Ocean Avenue
- Bronze Ambassador – accumulate 200 PV in sales or generate 50 PV and recruit 2 new Ambassadors within a calendar month of joining
- Silver Ambassador – accumulate 500 PV in sales or have recruited 2 Ambassadors and generate 1000 in unilevel team volume a month
- Gold Ambassador – accumulate 1000 PV in sales or 100 PV with at least 2 recruited Ambassadors and generating 4000 in unilevel team volume a month
- Pearl Ambassador – 150 PV a month, have recruited at least 4 active Ambassadors (2 in each binary team), have 2 Silver Ambassadors in both binary teams and be generating 12,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 40% qualifying volume can come from any one leg)
- Ruby Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 6 active Ambassadors (3 in each binary team), have at least 3 Silver Ambassadors in both binary teams and be generating 40,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 40% qualifying volume can come from any one leg)
- Emerald Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 9 active Ambassadors (split 4/5 in the binary teams), have at least 3 Gold Ambassadors in both binary teams and be generating 80,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 40% qualifying volume can come from any one leg)
- Diamond Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 10 active Ambassadors (5 in each binary team), have at least 3 Gold Ambassadors in both binary teams and be generating 200,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 40% qualifying volume can come from any one leg)
- Double Diamond Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 10 active Ambassadors (5 in each binary team), generate 200,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 30% qualifying volume can come from any one leg) and 200,000 binary team volume (100,000 each side)
- Triple Diamond Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 10 active Ambassadors (5 in each binary team), generate 1,000,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 30% qualifying volume can come from any one leg) and 400,000 binary team volume (200,000 each side)
- Presidential Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 10 active Ambassadors (5 in each binary team), generate 2,000,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 30% qualifying volume can come from any one leg) and 800,000 binary team volume (400,000 each side)
- Crown Diamond Ambassador – 200 PV a month, have recruited at least 10 active Ambassadors (5 in each binary team), generate 5,000,000 in unilevel team volume (no more than 30% qualifying volume can come from any one leg) and 2,000,000 binary team volume (1,000,000 each side)
Ocean Avenue offer retail commissions on the purchase of all their products by retail customers.
Retail commissions in Ocean Avenue are defined as ‘the price difference between the wholesale price and company’s suggested retail price‘.
Ocean Avenue wholesale customers are also able to sign up retail and wholesale customers and earn commissions on their orders.
Wholesale Customer Commissions
Wholesale customers in Ocean Avenue are customers who sign up for a minimum $50 product order and choose to join Ocean Avenue’s wholesale customer program.
Wholesale customers are entitled to wholesale discounts (5-15%) on all of Ocean Avenue’s products.
If an Ocean Avenue affiliate signs up a wholesale customer, depending on the total monthly product purchase amount of all their wholesale customers, they are entitled to a 5-15% commission on the orders for 12 months:
- less than $500 in a commission period – 5%
- between $501 and $155 in a commission period – 10%
- over $1501 – 15%
Note that Ocean Avenue affiliates can also buy into the 15% wholesale customer commission bracket by purchasing a ‘LifeFocused Pack’ or more expensive pack upon joining the business.
Residual commissions in Ocean Avenue are paid out using both a binary and unilevel commission structures.
A binary commissions structure places an affiliate at the top with two legs branching out under them:
These two legs form the basis of two “binary teams” (left and right) once recruited affiliates are placed in the positions. As an Ocean Avenue affiliate’s team grows, their binary gets larger and the sales volume of each binary team is used to calculate a residual commission.
Members can be added to an affiliate’s binary team via direct recruitment or the recruiting efforts of their upline and downline.
The team with the larger sales volume is referred to as the “reference leg” and the weaker team the “pay leg”. Residual commissions of up to 20% of the volume generated by the pay leg are paid out, with how much of a percentage paid out dependent on an affiliate’s membership rank:
- Bronze and Silver Ambassadors – 10%, capped at $500 and $1000 respectively
- Gold Ambassador – 15%, capped at $1500
- Pearl Ambassador – 20%, capped at $5000
- Ruby Ambassador – 20%, capped at $10,000
- Emerald Ambassador – 20%, capped at $15,000
- Diamond Ambassador – 20%, capped at $20,000
- Double Diamond Ambassador – 20%, capped at $30,000
- Triple Diamond Ambassador – 20%, capped at $40,000
- Presidential Diamond Ambassador – 20%, capped at $50,000
- Crown Ambassador – 20%, capped at $75,000
Note that unused volume in a reference leg is carried over once commissions are calculated and the volume from the pay leg has been subtracted.
The second residual commission paid out in Ocean Avenue uses a unilevel commission structure. Like a binary structure, a unilevel commission structure places an affiliate at the top with each recruited wholesale customer and affiliate placed directly underneath them, forming their level 1.
If any affiliates on level 1 recruit affiliates or wholesale customers of their own, these affiliates then form level 2 of the original affiliates unilevel structure. If any level 2 affiliates recruit new affiliates or wholesale customers, they form level 3 and so on and so forth.
Using this structure, Ocean Avenue pay out a residual commission on the sales volume generated by a unilevel team, ranging from 1% to 5% and paid out down 9 levels.
- Bronze, Silver and Gold Ambassadors – 5% on levels 1 to 3
- Pearl Ambassador – 5% on levels 1 to 3 and 4% on level 4
- Ruby Ambassador – 5% on levels 1 to 3 and 4% on levels 4 and 5
- Emerald Ambassador – 5% on levels 1 to 3, 4% on levels 4 and 5 and 3% on level 6
- Diamond Ambassador – 5% on levels 1 to 3, 4% on levels 4 and 5 and 3% on levels 6 and 7
- Double Diamond Ambassador – 5% on levels 1 to 3, 4% on levels 4 and 5, 3% on levels 6 and 7 and 2% on level 8
- Triple, Presidential and Crown Diamond Ambassadors – 5% on levels 1 to 3, 4% on levels 4 and 5, 3% on levels 6 and 7, 2% on level 8 and 1% on level 9
Residual Commission Matching Bonus
Using the unilevel residual commissions outlined above, Ocean Avenue pay out a matching residual commission of 10% and 20% on the unilvel earnings of affiliates on levels 1 to 3 of a unilevel structure:
- Silver and Gold Ambassadors – 10% on level 1
- Pearl Ambassador – 20% on level 1
- Ruby Ambassador – 20% on level 1 and 10% on level 2
- Emerald Ambassador – 20% on level 1 and 10% on levels 2 and 3
- Diamond Ambassadors and above – 20% on level 1 and 10% on levels 2 to 4
Generational Leadership Bonus
The Generational Leadership Bonus again uses the residual commission unilevel structure but pays out on “generations” within the structure, up to four generations deep.
A generation within an Ocean Avenue unilevel structure is defined as all the affiliates that exist between Pearl Ambassadors within any given unilevel leg, with each leg operating independently of eachother.
For example, if in one unilevel leg there are 3 affiliates between you and the first Pearl Ambassador found, those affiliates and the Pearl Ambassador count as your first generation.
If no other Peal Ambassador exists in the unilevel leg, no further commissions are paid.
If another Pearl Ambassador is found further down, all affiliates after the first but before the second Pearl Ambassador (the second Pearl Ambassador is not counted), form generation 2.
Using this definition, Ocean Avenue pay up to 5% on the sales volume of a generation, paid down on a maximum four generations:
- Pearl Ambassadors – 2% on generation 1
- Ruby Ambassadors – 2% on generation 1 and 3% on generation 2
- Emerald Ambassadors – 2% on generation 1, 3% on generation 2 and 4% on generation 3
- Diamond or higher Ambassadors – 2% on generation 1, 3% on generation 2, 4% on generation 3 and 5% on generation 4
First Order Bonus
The Ocean Avenue First Order Bonus pays out a 10% commission on the first order made by any newly recruited Ocean Avenue affiliates that week.
Affiliates can qualify for the First Order Bonus by generating at least 50 PV in sales volume a month. This volume can be generated via personal purchases or retail or wholesale customer purchases.
3xFree (3 times free)
Offered as an autoship incentive to Ocean Avenue affiliates, if an affiliate has at least 2 wholesale customers, who’s combined monthly purchase amount is at least three times greater than the affiliates monthly autoship amount, they qualify to earn their autoship for free for that month.
Shipping on 3xFree autoship orders is not included and orders are capped at 300BV worth of product. Wholesale customers are also able to participate in the 3xFree program, following the same criteria as Ocean Avenue affiliates.
Note that BV on 3xFree orders is not counted towards residual commissions.
Global Bonus Pool
3% of Ocean Avenue’s global unilevel sales volume is put into the Global Bonus Pool, to be shared amongst Ruby or higher Ambassadors.
The Pool is split amongst affiliates of membership ranks (Ruby ambassador or higher) as follows:
- Ruby Ambassadors – 32%
- Emerald Ambassadors – 24%
- Diamond Ambassadors – 15%
- Double Diamond Ambassadors – 10%
- Triple Diamond Ambassadors – 19%
How much of a share each ranked member gets of the portion of the membership rank pool they belong to is ‘in direct proportion to one’s sales contributions to the total unilevel BV‘.
Or to put it more simply, how much volume you generate through the sales efforts of your directly recruited Ocean Avenue affiliates.
The Ocean Avenue Vacation Club revolves around “vacation points” with the company stating that affiliates receive vacation points ‘for everything (affiliates) do‘.
Vacation points earned can then be used in the vacation club to purchase resort accommodation and/or cruises. Affiliates can either entirely pay for Vacation Club offers using vacation points or make up the difference from their commission checks.
Although specifics aren’t provided, Ocean Avenue state that upon reaching the rank of ‘Pearl Ambassador’, that an affiliate should have generated enough vacation points to pay for a ‘family trip for 4′.
Wholesale customers are also able to generation Vacation Points, however any vacation offers purchased must be paid for in points only.
Joining Ocean Avenue
Those looking to join Ocean Avenue can do so either as an affiliate or wholesale customer.
- wholesale Customer membership requires a $50 product purchase
- affiliate membership costs $49.95
With a solid retailable product line there’s a lot to like in Ocean Avenue.
One of the standout components of their compensation plan was the dual-residual commissions offered via the us of both a binary and unilevel commission structure (three if you count matching commissions).
Typically you’ll see one or the other but I haven’t come across double residual commissions in a while and I think this is quite generous on the company’s behalf.
Product wise I believe might be a slight difficulty here for marketers in that it’s no secret Ocean Avenue are entering an already established and well represented MLM niche in health and nutrition.
Quite obviously founders Fred Ninow and Ken Dunn are using their past experience in MLM with the Ocean Avenue product line appearing to be a mishmash of products available through Max International and Evolv Health.
That said there’s nothing wrong with that as it’s still a legitimate retail offering, however prospective members would do well to consider the competition they’ll be up against out there in the industry.
Speaking of competition, I’ll also note that in my research into Ken Dunn I found multiple references (particularly from Evolv) to Dunn’s expansive team (downline). I’m not sure if this downline are forming the basis of Ocean Avenue (I can only presume so) but if they are that’s definitely something to take on board to.
The impression that I got was this downline was in the thousands and if enough of them have followed Dun over into Ocean Avenue, it might create an artificially competitive environment marketing and sales wise than would otherwise normally exist.
That said, it could also provide a strong opportunity to be placed directly under MLM mentors with a strong track record too so that’s something else to consider.
All in all the Ocean Avenue compensation plan is quite generous and although it exists, the autoship requirement is fairly lax set at a minimum of just 50 PV every 6 months.
Note that at higher membership levels this increases substantially to a monthly requirement, however given the sales volume required at these levels I believe it would be rare to find a ranked member not generating the minimums required through sales of their own.
As always with any health-related product line I’d also strongly advise prospective members to try the products out first before deciding whether they wish to market them or not.
The best approach here seems to be signing up as a wholesale member ($50 product purchase) and then, if satisfied with the quality of Ocean Avenue products, migrating to affiliate status at a later date.