EP17: Jacques Voorhees - How He Revolutionized the Diamond Industry
Jacques Voorhees – Current Founder and CEO VeriChannel LLC
After selling Polygon to Mediagrif Technologies, Jacques Voorhees launched his newest venture, VeriChannel. This company operates jewelry industry search engines in both the B2B and B2C space. Clients include De Beers' Forevermark, Independent Jewelers Organization, American Gem Society, and Worldmart*E in Panyu, China. The company's consumer-facing search engine is Gemfling.com.
Prior: Founder and CEO Polygon Network, Inc.
Polygon was the original, and is today one of the industry's primary, B2B online marketplaces, accounting for millions of dollars of transactions per day, and with over $4 billion in product listed daily.
Jacques decides to get into the diamond industry:
Has no background
How did he create the company?
After being told be everyone that he was crazy to get into the diamond industry because there is no way to sell an investment diamond after buying:
“If there's 26 billion dollars going into diamonds as an investment each year, and there is no liquid marketplace for these investors, then by god, someone needs to create one. And that was the light bulb moment from which I decided to create Polygon.”
1970's: “Throw computers at it, and you could probably come up with a liquid market for diamonds.”
2 Things that Jacques sees as important attributes for entrepreneurs but not talked about enough:
1) Interpersonal Skills: Read Dale Carnegie's “How to Win Friends and Influence People”
Practice: Go onto social media and debate politics. Try to engage people in a way where none of the
Jacques talks about Verichannel, and the company he is most excited about: “The Museum of Named Diamonds”
Productivity hack: Facebooking and creating relationships worldwide
Book recommendation: “Up the organization” Older book – exposed Jacques eyes to how a corporation runs http://www.amazon.com/Up-Organization-Corporation-Stifling-Strangling/dp/0787987751
Most influential entrepreneur: Don Wilson Founded LexisNexis, and mentored Jacques https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H._Donald_Wilson
Jacques knows more about the founding of LexisNexis than possibly anyone in the planet – follow up episode?
If Jacques could change the world: He would change education. Make ~50% of K12, college education be focused on entrepreneurship.
“The whole educational system is oriented around: 'Oh you you have to learn all these things so you can go out and get a job. No. That shouldn't be the focus. The focus should be how to create a viable business.”