Practical Founders Podcast

#95: Bootstrapped, Scaled, and Sold a Great Tech-Enabled Services Business – Jeff Corn

Jeff Corn is the co-founder and former CEO of Virtuance, one of the US’s leading real estate photography and marketing providers. In 2010, Jeff was in the real estate investment business and wondered why it took $10,000 and nearly a month to get professional photos for new listings. He and a cofounder started taking photos to serve busy real estate agents to learn what was needed and improve the quality and speed of delivery with technology. 

Virtuance started with the vision of a software-only solution, but the business started growing with a high-quality, done-for-you service with a fast turnaround, powered by its technology, partners, and systems. The company grew steadily every year without any outside funding to eventually serve more than 20,000 real estate agents with 100 employees and more than 300 local photography partners.

This tech-enabled services company has SaaS-like gross margins. re-occurring revenue, and some profits In 2022, Jeff successfully sold Virtuance to Diakrit, a global real estate marketing technology company backed by private equity investors. Jeff stayed on for two years after the sale, until last month.

Quote from Jeff Corn, co-founder of Virtuance
“The biggest reason that founders fail is that they actually fail to launch. The hardest thing to do is to fricking push your product and get it out in the world– because it’s messy. It’s certainly far from perfect, and it may not even work very well. But getting that feedback is so important to figure out what to do next.

“I see too many founders try to perfect it before they get it into the market. And then when it gets into the market, they might think it’s perfect, but the market may not. And at that point, they already invested too much in it. It’s not that we’re shipping something that we don’t think works; we are shipping something that we know checks just one of the boxes that our customers need.

“It’s just human nature that we want to put out good work, we have pride in our work. It’s one of the one of the real paradoxes of entrepreneurship is that we are all perfectionists and Type A personalities. We want to control it and we want it to be right, but also to be successful. The only way to succeed is to let go of some of that, to allow our teams to do the work, and be able to ship an imperfect product to get real feedback.”



The Practical Founders Podcast

Tune into the Practical Founders Podcast for weekly in-depth interviews with founders who have built valuable software companies—without big funding.

Subscribe to the Practical Founders Podcast using your favorite podcast app.

Get weekly Practical Founders newsletter and podcast updates.

Greg Head recorded this on episode on May 31, 2024 for the Practical Founders Podcast see all of the episodes.

Share Practical Founders


Win the Startup Game Without VC Funding

Learn how all 75 founders on the Practical Founders Podcast created an average founder equity value of $50 million.