Scandal? Controversy? Not at 4ocean

4ocean Team

We want to address false claims made against the company

4ocean was built on the mission of ridding the world’s oceans of plastic pollution. Though there has been talk of a 4ocean scandal, our company is committed as ever to fulfilling our mission and our legal obligation.

At 4ocean, we believe in transparency and trust. Internet rumors claim that 4ocean does not live up to our stated mission, but these claims are baseless and inaccurate, and we want to set the record straight.

Our company is made up of surfers, scuba divers, beach bums, sailors, and ocean lovers who share these same values and want to prevent plastic pollution in our oceans.

We’re here to dive into the 4ocean scandal rumors to clear the air and help our customers understand how we work towards our mission.

For-Profit vs. Nonprofit

4ocean has always been open about the fact that we operate as a purpose-driven business — not a nonprofit.

The decision to operate as a for-profit company was simply because we are able to have a much greater impact on our environmental goals. Our business model was built on the idea of balancing the triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit—always in that order.

4ocean employs full-time captains and crews whose only job is to clean the ocean, and we pay 100% of their healthcare costs as well as bonuses and incentives.

Though 4ocean is a for-profit company, we do operate as a Public Benefit Corporation (PBC), which is a special type of business with a legally binding financial commitment to balancing social and environmental impact alongside shareholder value.

Though we are committed to our mission of removing plastic pollution from the ocean because we are passionate about preserving the planet’s beauty and uplifting communities, we are also legally obligated to fund our goal.

What does 4ocean do with incoming money?

Some 4ocean scandal rumors insinuate that the company’s founders keep a majority of the company’s profits, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Because 4ocean is a private corporation, we are not obligated to provide financial records, yet Andrew and Alex submitted their personal tax returns and business financials to the Better Business Bureau in 2019. This verified that both founders have taken less than 0.7% of the company’s total revenue in personal compensation since the company started in 2017.

4ocean uses its resources and revenue to pay captains and crews a fair living wage in addition to providing healthcare benefits and furthering our efforts to clean up the oceans. 4ocean has been vetted and certified by third-party auditors including B Lab and GreenCircle Certified to verify that 100% of every purchase supports the mission.

We also offer a monthly subscription that makes it easy for people to offset the impact of the plastics they can’t avoid. Plastic has become such a prevalent part of our everyday lives, even when we do our best to eliminate plastic from our daily activities, there’s always some kind of plastic that sneaks in—usually packaging.

In fact, the average person uses 9 pounds of single-use plastic every month. Our Plastic Offset Subscription offers three plans so it’s accessible to everyone, no matter where they are in their sustainability journey:

  • Plastic Offset Plan: Pulls 5 pounds of trash from the ocean for $10 / month
  • Plastic Neutral Plan: Pulls 9 pounds of trash from the ocean for $18 / month
  • Plastic Negative Plan: Pulls 18 pounds of trash from the ocean for $36 / month

Is 4ocean actually removing trash from the oceans?

Aside from financial claims, one of the biggest concerns in the 4ocean scandal was whether our company is following through on our environmental obligations.

As previously mentioned, we have a legal obligation to our mission, as well as an emotional and ethical obligation. This company was created specifically to fund daily ocean, river, and coastline cleanups, creative living-wage jobs that take care of the people who are taking care of the ocean, and inspire action on behalf of our one shared ocean.

To date, 4ocean has pulled more than 31 million pounds of plastic from the world’s oceans, rivers, and coastlines.

We conduct cleanups in these areas in addition to more in-depth endeavors including two major cleanup missions using the OPR Vessel and a trip to transport supplies to the Bahamas in 2019 following Hurricane Dorian.

One of our recent cleanups pulled 20,234 pounds of plastic from the ocean in just one day.

A larger cleanup project to protect our coral reefs kicked off in October 2021. Our crews went below the surface during a mission in Florida to remove tires from the Osborne Reef, which has collected millions of tires. Our cleanup area spans across 34 acres, and we created the Osborne Reef Bracelet, made from verified tire crumb recovered directly from this reef by our crews, to specifically fund the purpose of this mission.

Some 4ocean scandal claims have asserted that the OPR Vessel does not exist because there is no public footage of the vessel during a mission.

After using this tool on two missions, we realized that maintenance was using a disproportionate amount of funds, which we decided to shift to our operations in high-impact areas including Guatemala and Java, Indonesia.

Cleaning the world’s oceans is no small task, and we’re still learning how we can most effectively combat such a massive issue. With the shifted funds, we can have a much bigger impact on areas that are highly impacted by pollution.

You can follow our progress and cleanup missions through our YouTube channel

False claims like 4ocean bracelets cost $20 for customers but "only $0.50 wholesale"

This rumor about a 4ocean scandal resulted from a listing on Alibaba for counterfeit 4ocean bracelets selling as low as $0.50.

However, Alibaba has never been a 4ocean manufacturing partner. The company has never sold items through this platform. These are fake products that take away from the 4ocean mission. The counterfeit products have been removed from the site because we filed an infringement claim against the seller, which was substantiated.

Despite the 4ocean scandal rumors, our company continues to operate on our values of protecting the ocean, being a force for good, and making small choice changes to create a big impact. We want to be open and honest with our customers, which is why we’re addressing these false claims head on.

If you want to support our mission, 4ocean products are only available through and the verified retailers listed in our store locator

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