JM Ocean Avenue Review: Pay to play & affiliate autoship
JM Ocean Avenue came about following a merge between Ocean Avenue and JM International in 2014.
Ocean Avenue was launched back in 2012 by Fred Ninow and Ken Dunn. JM International was founded in 2009 by Joe Zhou, but outside of China is relatively unknown.
JM Ocean Avenue claimed the merger between the two companies ‘create(d) opportunities for distributors and customers by expanding to 25 new markets in six continents‘.
A month prior to the merge in June, 2014, Ken Dunn left Ocean Avenue. A year later in June 2015, JM Ocean Avenue affiliates began advertising HopRocket.
As above, HopRocket was initially billed as a “brand new JM Ocean Avenue opportunity”. At the time, it was claimed the JM Ocean Avenue affiliate-base had been pre-loaded into the company.
That fell apart a month later in July, with four JM Ocean Avenue executives (former Ocean Avenue staff) resigning.
HopRocket continued on as an independent MLM opportunity launch, now very much separated from its JM Ocean Avenue roots.
JM Ocean Avenue meanwhile moved its US headquarters to Los Angeles (the Ocean Avenue staff who resigned were based in Utah).
To date I haven’t seen specific clarification of what went down between JM Ocean Avenue and the four executives who resigned.
Today JM Ocean Avenue is headed up by Joe Zhou (right), who serves as Chairman.
Joe Zhou started as an independent business owner at a direct selling company with a worldwide reputation.
There he gained practical experience and knowledge about direct sales and soon became one of the most successful and recognized direct sales team leaders in China.
In 2006, Joe became the Vice Chairman of a newly established direct sales enterprise. In just 3 years, he was able to establish a name for that enterprise in China and lead it to become one of the most recognized direct sales companies in China.
Since 2009, Joe Zhou founded JM International and has since worked tirelessly to take the company to dozens of global markets, which are now encompassed in seven major regions.
I wasn’t able to establish whether the current JM Ocean Avenue management run the company from within the US or elsewhere.
Read on for a full review of the JM Ocean Avenue MLM business opportunity.
The JM Ocean Avenue Product Line
The JM Ocean Avenue website advises:
We offer innovative products that have been specifically designed by Biochemist Franco Cavaleri to interact with specific genes to support high physical and mental health.
JM Ocean Avenue believes in restoring natural energy through science and technology in product development.
Our products can create a health promoting environment in your home by incorporating the unique elements found in Bama – a city in China where residents are noted to live unusually long and healthy lives with a high percentage of centenarians.
Of note is a press-release on the JM Ocean Avenue website dated January 5th, 2016, which states:
As the function of pre-established agreement, effective from 15 January 2016, Mr. Franco Cavaleri, Formulator of WAV Nutrition will no longer be involved in consultation, promotion and other matter pertaining to WAV Series products with JM Ocean Avenue.
WAV products still appear to be marketed by JM Ocean Avenue, with products in the nutrition, living and personal care niches advertised on their website.
- AlphaMeta – “a high nutrition meal replacement”
- WAV Beyond – “a delicious whey protein drink mix”
- WAV Focus – “helps enhance your daily health routine”
- WAV Smart – “a delicious, naturally flavored vanilla-bean smoothie mix formulated to produce optimal results for body mass management and nutrient delivery”
- WAV Protein – “a delicious protein-packed bar made with oats, coconut, and white chocolate (that) delivers omega-3 fatty acids, soluble fiber and antioxidants”
- WAV Invigorate – “an exclusive formula for healthy and effective weight loss”
- WAV Mpower – “an innovative breakthrough anti-inflammatory and immune system support supplement”
JM Ocean Avenue’s living line has been developed to help counteract negative environmental influences such as harsh sunlight or poor air quality.
- JMS3 Series – an ” innovative Sleep System Solution provides you with the comfort you need and the improved health you desire”
- JMR4 Series – “stimulates the area of pain and relaxes blood vessels, which promotes optimal blood circulation for improved healing”
- Ice Elements – a skincare line that “immerses your skin with a healthy dose of hydration”
- 2 Minute Miracle – a “powerful blend of ingredients utilizing optimal amounts of Antarcticine, Aloe Extract, and KBGA (Klamath Blue Green Algae)”
- C5 – “a luxurious nighttime product that is light on your skin, yet penetrates deeply to uplift those unwanted lines and wrinkles”
- Radiance – “leaves your skin feeling soft the moment you rub it into your skin”
- Angels Secret – “combines anti-bacterial and super absorbent properties with a highly breathable sanitary napkin to promote clean and dry security”
Unfortunately no retail pricing for any of JM Ocean Avenue’s products are provided on their website.
The JM Ocean Avenue Compensation Plan
The JM Ocean Avenue compensation plan cited for this review was sourced from the JM Ocean Avenue Facebook page. It is dated October, 2015.
The compensation plan provided on the JM Ocean Avenue US website is dated March, 2015. The March compensation plan appears to be out of date (it also lists the Utah corporate address), so I’ve broken down the updated October plan below.
In order to qualify for commissions, all JM Ocean Avenue affiliates must purchase 50 BV of products each month.
To qualify for unilevel commissions, the mandatory affiliate purchase amount each month is increased to 100 BV.
JM Ocean Avenue Affiliate Ranks
When a new JM Ocean avenue affiliate signs up, how much they spend on products directly impacts their earning potential through the compensation plan.
- Silver – purchase at least 50 BV worth of product
- Gold – purchase at least 300 BV worth of product
- Platinum – purchase at least 600 BV worth of product
- Diamond – purchase at least 900 BV worth of product
Note that JM Ocean Avenue affiliates can also upgrade to Diamond if they initially buy in at a lower rank.
Beyond these initial ranks, qualification criteria for ten additional JM Ocean Avenue affiliate ranks are as follows:
- Rising Star – have a 1500 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 1500 GV a month pay leg total
- Star – have a 2500 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 2500 GV a month pay leg total
- 1-Star Diamond – have a 5000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 5000 GV a month pay leg total
- 2-Star Diamond – have a 15,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 15,000 GV a month pay leg total
- 2-Star Diamond Elite – have a 30,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 30,000 GV a month pay leg total
- 3-Star Diamond – have a 62,500 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 62,500 GV a month pay leg total, must also be and maintain Diamond Club Member status from here on out
- 4-Star Diamond – have a 125,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 125,000 GV a month pay leg total
- 5-Star Diamond – have a 250,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 250,000 GV a month pay leg total
- Crown Diamond – have a 500,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 500,000 GV a month pay leg total
- Crown Diamond Ambassador – have a 750,000 GV a month qualifying leg and at least 750,000 GV a month pay leg total
Diamond Club Member status (required for 3-Star Diamond and higher ranks), sees an affiliate required to recruit at least 12 Diamond affiliates within a yearly quarter (3 months).
In the lead up to Diamond Club Member qualification, a maximum of ten recruited affiliates can be carried over from the previous quarter.
Retail commissions are available on the sale of JM Ocean Avenue products to retail customers (non-affiliates).
JM Ocean Avenue define a retail commission as ‘the difference between the retail price and your Distributor price‘.
JM Ocean Avenue do not provide retail or wholesale pricing on their website, so I can’t give you any examples.
Recruitment Commissions (autoship)
Referred to as the “Drive Bonus”, JM Ocean Avenue pay affiliates to recruit new affiliates who remain commission qualified.
This qualification sees them make a mandatory purchase for 50 BV of product each month, which JM Ocean Avenue pay a recurring 20% commission on.
Residual Unilevel Group Commissions
Residual commissions in JM Ocean Avenue are paid out via a unilevel compensation structure.
A unilevel compensation structure places an affiliate at the top of a unilevel team, with their first five recruited affiliates placed directly under them:
These first positions form the first level of the unilevel team, with the second level generated when any level 1 affiliates recruit new affiliates of their own.
If any level 2 affiliates recruit new affiliates, they are placed on level 3 and so on and so forth down a theoretical infinite number of levels.
Typically a unilevel is expanded an infinite width across, however JM Ocean Avenue cap unilevel legs at five.
The sixth recruited affiliate starts of a new group of five unilevel legs, with commissions across each unilevel group of five calculated independently of the other groups.
The unilevel leg with the highest amount of sales volume in a group of five for that week is designated a “qualifying leg”.
JM Ocean Avenue pay affiliates based on sales volume generated in the remaining four legs of that group.
Commissions are paid out as a percentage of sales volume generated, with how much of a percentage paid out determined by how much a JM Ocean Avenue affiliate spent when they signed up:
- Silver, Gold and Platinum affiliates – 10%
- Diamond affiliates – 12%
- Ocean Diamond affiliates (no qualifying criteria provided) – 20%
Note that pay leg sales volume in a group is capped, based on how much a JM Ocean Avenue affiliate spent when they signed up:
- Silver – 20,000 GV cap
- Gold – 60,000 GV cap
- Platinum – 62,500 GV cap
- Diamond – 250,000 GV cap
- Ocean Diamond (no qualifying criteria provided) – 1,000,000 GV cap
After commissions have been calculated, used sales volume is flushed in each unilevel leg group. Excess volume in an affiliate’s qualifying leg is carried over into the next week, subject to the following volume caps:
- Silver – maximum 5000 GV carried over
- Gold – maximum 15,000 GV carried over
- Platinum – maximum 62,500 GV carried over
- Diamond and Ocean Diamond- 125,000 GV carried over
Diamond and Ocean Diamond affiliates are able to collect a 20% bonus on sales volume generated by paying legs in a group.
To qualify a Diamond affiliate must have a pay leg generating 250,000 GV a week, with the remaining four legs’ volume equal or higher than the weekly pay leg volume in that group.
Matching Residual Bonus
JM Ocean Avenue affiliates with one active downline affiliate who is paid a weekly unilevel group residual commission, receive a 10% matching bonus.
If they have two personally recruited affiliates who receive a unilevel group residual commission, they receive the 10% bonus down two levels of recruitment.
If they have three personally recruited affiliates who receive a unilevel group residual commission, they receive the 10% bonus down three levels of recruitment.
Residual Unilevel Commissions
Residual unilevel commissions in JM Ocean Avenue use the same unilevel compensation structure as unilevel group commissions, however this is a traditional unilevel team that extends infinite width and depth.
You recruit an affiliate and they are placed on level 1. If they recruit an affiliate they are placed on your level 2 and so on and so forth.
JM Ocean Avenue cap payable unilevel levels at nine.
Each new affiliate you recruit generates a new unilevel leg, with your unilevel team as wide as however many affiliates you recruit.
Commissions are paid out as a percentage of sales volume generated in the unilevel team. How much of a percentage is paid out is determined by what level of the unilevel team sales volume is generated.
- level 1 (personally recruited affiliates) – 10%
- level 2 – 10%
- level 3 – 5%
- levels 4 and 5 – 10%
- level 6 – 5%
- levels 7 and 8 – 10%
- level 9 – 5%
Personal BV Bonus
Provided a JM Ocean Avenue affiliate purchases a minimum monthly order of over 100 PV, they receive a 10% commission on volume over 100 PV from orders their downline makes.
Orders in excess of 100 PV pay 10% for first and second level recruited affiliates. Third level recruited affiliate orders pay 5%.
Generation Leadership Bonus
Once qualified at the 3-Star Diamond or higher rank, JM Ocean Avenue affiliates qualify for a Generation Leadership Bonus.
This bonus pays out using an affiliate’s unilevel team, with a generation defined when a 3-Star Diamond or higher ranked affiliate is found in a unilevel leg.
This first affiliate caps off the first generation, with the second starting under them. If another 3-Star Diamond or higher ranked affiliate is found, the second generation is capped off and the third begins.
In this manner a JM Ocean Avenue affiliate is able to earn down a maximum five generations as follows:
- 3-Star Diamond – 2% on the first generation
- 4-Star Diamond – 2% on the first and second generations
- 5-Star Diamond – 2% on the first to third generations
- Crown Diamond – 2% on the first to third generations and 1% on the fourth
- Crown Diamond Ambassador – 2% on the first to third generations and 1% on the fourth and fifth
Note that generation calculation in each unilevel leg is done independently of the others.
Lifestyle Global Bonus
The Lifestyle Global Bonus is a pool made up of 5% of JM Ocean Avenue’s monthly company-wide sales volume (excluding China).
Affiliates can qualify for shares in the Lifestyle Global Bonus, determined by their rank:
- 3-Star Diamond – 1 share
- 4-Star Diamond – 3 shares
- 5-Star Diamond – 5 shares
- Crown Diamond – 7 shares
- Crown Diamond Ambassador – 9 shares
Crown Diamond Ambassador Bonus
The Crown Diamond Ambassador Bonus is a pool made up of 1% of JM Ocean Avenue’s monthly company-wide sales volume (excluding China).
Crown Diamond Ambassador ranked affiliates can qualify for shares in the pool, with how many shares received determined by their accumulated qualifying and pay leg volume:
- 750,000 BV qualifying leg and total pay leg volume = 1 share
- 1,000,000 qualifying leg and total pay leg volume = 3 shares
- 1,250,000 qualifying leg and total pay leg volume = 5 shares
- 1,500,000 qualifying leg and total pay leg volume = 7 shares
- 1,750,000 qualifying leg and total pay leg volume = 9 shares
Vacation Club Reward
When JM Ocean Avenue affiliates ‘buy products and enroll people who also purchase product‘, they receive Vacation Club Points.
- purchase 50 to 99 BV of product = 1:1 ratio of Vaction Club Points
- purchase 100 to 149 BV of product = 1:2 ratio of Vacation Club Points
- purchase 150 to 199 BV of product = 1:5 ratio of Vacation Club Points
- purchase over 200 BV of product = 1:10 ratio of Vacation Club Points
- BV generated by recruited affiliate orders = 1:1 ratio of Vacation Club Points
Note that Vacation Club Point ratios are based on purchased BV.
Eg. if you purchased 150 BV in a month, you’d receive 750 Vacation Club Points for that month (150 x 5).
60,000 Vacation Club Points are required to be “eligible for a vacation”, with the following monthly and total caps applied:
- 2-Star Diamond Elite or below – 10,000 Vacation Club Point cap a month, 60,000 Vacation Club Point cap total
- 3-Star Diamond or higher – 10,000 Vacation Club Point cap a month, 120,000 Vacation Club Point cap total
For 2-Star Diamond Elite or lower ranked affiliates up to 20,000 Vacation Club Points in the total cap can be generated by their own purchase of product.
For 3-Star Diamond or higher ranked affiliates, this cap increases to 40,000 Vacation Club Points.
Joining JM Ocean Avenue
Affiliate membership with JM Ocean Avenue is tied to the purchase of a Silver (50 BV), Gold (300 BV), Platinum (or Diamond affiliate pack.
How much the corresponding BV equates to in dollars is not disclosed on the JM Ocean Avenue website.
Typically however BV ranged between 80 to 100% of the cost of products purchased.
An “an annual membership fee” is mentioned in the JM Ocean Avenue compensation plan documentation, but again costs are not disclosed.
JM Ocean Avenue is very obviously geared to signing up as an affiliate, placing a monthly autoship order and then recruiting others who do the same.
Whether this is a legacy from the Chinese side of the business or otherwise, unfortunately retail in JM Ocean Avenue appears to be an afterthought.
“Pay to play” presents itself when an affiliate first signs up, with how much they spend directly effecting their income potential.
At the time of your enrollment, you will receive a rank based on your first purchase order BV.
This rank qualifies you to receive a certain percentage of commissions from sales orders purchased in your organization.
In MLM, an affiliate’s earning potential should be based on their retail sales performance – not how much they spent when they signed up.
A minimum 50 BV a month is required for an affiliate to qualify for commissions, with this having to be a purchase.
An “Active” Distributor is a Distributor who purchases an order that consists of a minimum 50 BV during the month.
Only “Active” Distributors are qualified to receive commissions.
Ergo, JM Ocean Avenue affiliates are forced to purchase products to qualify for commissions.
Not only that, but they receive a 20% direct commission when they recruit others who do the same – month after month after month.
Retail pricing is noticeably absent from the JM Ocean Avenue website, leaving retail customers with no idea how much the company’s products cost.
This again reinforces that JM Ocean Avenue products are unlikely to be sold to non-affiliates.
To earn unilevel commissions, affiliates are then further forced to increase their monthly spend to 100 BV.
To receive the Unilevel Bonus, you need to be Active at 100 BV purchase, qualifying you for all 9 levels of the Unilevel payout.
As JM Ocean Avenue affiliates progress (3-Star Diamond and above), the company also forces them to have either bought in or upgrade to the Diamond level.
The description of unilevel matching bonus commissions in the JM Ocean Avenue compensation plan, pretty much lays out what affiliates are earning on:
Not only does your 100 BV qualify you for the maximum Unilevel bonus possible from your downline’s purchases.
Again, you sign up as a JM Ocean Avenue affiliate, make a monthly autoship purchase and then recruit other affiliates who do the same.
With most affiliates in JM Ocean Avenue self-qualifying for commissions via a monthly autoship order, it follows they are likely only earning commissions on recruited affiliates who do the same. What little retail activity may be taking place, is insignificant in light of the majority of sales volume generated by monthly affiliate autoship orders.
The lack of retail qualifies JM Ocean Avenue as a chain-recruitment scheme, with the majority of affiliates who earn a commission doing so based on autoship recruitment.
On a broader level, JM Ocean Avenue could do well to clarify just what went on between the current management team and the former Ocean Avenue staff. Obviously the launch of HopRocket didn’t go as planned, with an explanation yet to surface.
Disclosure of affiliate costs and what the dollar equivalent is for 50 and 100 BV is also a no-brainer.
Clarification as to why Chinese volume is not included in JM Ocean Avenue’s bonus pools wouldn’t hurt. Is there a legitimately justifiable reason for doing so? I can’t think of one…
With the glaring focus on affiliate autoship recruitment, JM Ocean Avenue will sustain itself for as long as newly recruited affiliates join the opportunity and commit to autoship.
Once that slows down and with a lack of retail sales volume to otherwise sustain itself, JM Ocean Avenue will be looking at a collapse.
Approach with caution.