What does a zero finance company aimed at individuals with limited access to bank credit have to do in common with an online media site aimed at young Millennials? They were both started by Josh Verne, the family businessman turned successful serial entrepreneur who saw the same kind of business opportunity in two drastically different industries. What these two businesses had in common was that they both undressed a vacuum, a “whitespace in the marketplace” as Josh himself in explains in this interview featured on Forbes.com.
Josh has had over 20 years of experience in business, starting out in his family furniture business at an early age. In a very candid interview on the popular Knowledge for Men Podcast, we get to see an entrepreneur with the drive to succeed, not just for himself, but also for the people around him. Unabashed about his thirst for success, Josh recalls how despite being born into a boxing family, he quit the sport at an early age when he realized that he wasn’t cut out for it. But tasting success in the world of business with his first attempt at the age of 9, he soon entered the successful family furniture business.
As we take a lot at his two major entrepreneurial success stories, we see an individual seeking to constantly improve and excel, competing against his own “6 month old self”. Why else would a man who had found success in a safe family business seek investment opportunities in paths less trodden? Take Workpays.me, the finance tech startup Josh founded with his business partner Jon Dorfman sometime in 2012 to serve under-served customers in the banking and credit market. After growing the company through its early years to a customer base of several million across the US, he successfully sold it in to Global Analytics, a San Diego based financial analytics company.
Any other man would have found it a good enough reason to quit and relax. But quitting is not something Josh knows very much about. In the podcast, he talks about how even when ideas don’t seem to be working out, he prefers to “pivot rather than quit” and try to find new ways to make good ideas work. And he seems to have found a good business idea to work with, in Flocku.com, an online platform which seeks to connect with that demographic which most businesses find notoriously difficult to engage with: the Millennials. As Josh explains on the Forbes article, he saw the whitespace, because brand were talking to this demographic, not trying to connect with them.
Flocku seems to be going about it the right way too, providing a platform where young Millennials can engage, interact and above all create and share content relevant to themselves. If he manages to get this recipe right, then this Philadelphia based investor may have really cracked the Holy Grail of modern marketing, a demographic with deep pockets to the tune of $200 billion. The early signs look really promising.