Category Archives: General

Pillow Fight Store in Amsterdam

Yesterday I was walking down the Kalverstraat in Amsterdam (The Netherlands) and saw a store filled with kids smashing pillow:
Chocomel Pillow Fight Store Amsterdam
Chocomel Pillow Fight Store Amsterdam

The legendary Dutch chocolate milk brand 'Chocomel' opened this pop-up store in the best high street of The Netherlands. Check video of their innovative marketing concept on their website:


65 years later...

Since my childhood I have been fascinated by tattoos. I truly believe that many tatoos are pieces of art and the designers of that are true artist. BUT... I don't have one and never will get one... I work in a business that is all about decorating bodies, but even nowadays that it is possible to remove tattoos, I don't think I will ever want one.

While I was growing up in the 1980s and 1990s a tattoo was still not as common as today. Now it seems quarter of the population has a tattoo. In 2007 The Pew Research Center found out that 36% of 18-35 year olds have at least one tattoo. So, for years I wondered why I am so opposed to tattoos... Yesterday I received an e-mail with a cartoon that summarizes my feelings about tattoos:

Although I am from 1979 and don't consider myself as old, I really feel old when I talk about people about tattoos and explain to them that I always think of people with numbers on their arm. I feel SO old when they don't understand that I am referring back to the Second World War in Europe and the Holocaust. I really get worried and sad when people don't even know what the word Holocaust means and refers to! Therefore I want to pay respect to a lady that did something AMAZING in those days:

Two years ago a 98 year-old lady named Irena Sendler passed away. During World War II, Irena, got permission to work in the Warsaw Ghetto, as a Plumbing/Sewer specialist. She had an 'ulterior motive' .... She KNEW what the Nazi's plans were for the Jews. Irena smuggled infants out in the bottom of the tool box she carried and she carried in the back of her truck a burlap sack (for larger kids). She also had a dog in the back that she trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto. The soldiers of course wanted nothing to do with the dog and the barking covered the kids/infants noises. During her time of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 kids/infants. She was caught, and the Nazi's broke both her legs, arms and beat her severely. Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she smuggled out and kept them in a glass jar, buried under a tree in her back yard. After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived it and reunited the family. Most of them did not return... Those kids she helped and have been placed into foster family homes or adopted.

In 2007 Irena was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize .... She was not selected.  Al Gore won, for a theory on Global Warming (which has been disputed...).

Let us never forget!
There is a saying that comes to mind: "If you save a life, you save a whole world."
Please don't forget!

It is now 65 years after the Second World War in Europe ended. I write this in memory of the 20 million Russians, 10 million Christians, 6 million Jews and 1,900 Catholic priests who were murdered, massacred, raped, burned,  starved and humiliated with 'The Others' looking the other way!

Now, more than ever, with Iraq, Iran, and others, claiming the Holocaust to be 'a myth,' it is important to make sure the world never forgets, because there are others who would like to do it again...

For more information on Irena Sendler, check the Wikipedia page about her.


Vote for Team B - Zibb Business Challenge

Friday October 3rd, 2008, we had the first get-to-gether of the eight finalist and sponsors of the Zibb Business Challenge. I teamed up with Justus Verkerk of FCCE International.

Today was the dead-line of our first Brain Batlle!

For us to win, I have to complete four Brain Battles with my partner Justus Verker. Please vote for us on the first battle we completed today: > TEAM B.

They want you to register and all participants have a chance to win prizes too. Please vote for us, since 50% of the decision is based on votes of visitors!

For all of you that don't speak Dutch, please follow these instructions:

1. Go to the following link:

2. Click on "STEM OP TEAM B" below my picture.

3. To register, go to the paragraph "AANMELDEN" and fill in:
- Name,
- Password,
- E-mail,
- Tick the box, and
- Choose my name from the drop-down box.


Thank you so much for your support!


Zibb Business Challenge 2008

This year I decided to register for the Zibb Business Challenge 2008 a.k.a. Battle of the Brains.

The concept is that any entrepreneur can register, post his personal Business Challenge and compete with other entrepreneurs. The winner not only has the honour to name himself Zibb Business Challenger 2008, but also receives a prize equaling EUR 55.000,--

As CEO of Ace Jewelers Group I posted our business challenge of transforming our classic retail organization in to a hybrid company where retail and e-tail go hand in hand. This year we started the fourth company of The Ace Jewelers Group, Ace Online B.V., where we will manage all our e-commerce activities. For further details, please see my challenge on the Zibb page:

Ace Online Business Challenge: "Retail & E-tail: Friend or Foes?"

All the contestants where invited for a networking workshop on Thursday September 24, 2008 in Rotterdam. The Friday before I received a phone call that I was selected with 14 other entrepreneurs to come present our challenge for the jury and from this group of 15, the final eight contestant would be selected.

The networking workshop was fun and very interesting. I met very nice people and the jury was very enthousiastic. The day after I received a phone call that I am one of the final eight contestants ūüėÄ

Please visit this blog regularly for updates on my (personal) challenge... The next challenge is on Friday October 3rd, 2008 and is titled FUN challenge.