Laban Roomes is a highly acclaimed entrepreneur and founder of international Luxury Gold Gifts & customisation company Goldgenie which he showcased on Dragons Den in 2007, winning the first televised investment from the then new Dragon and multi-millionaire business man James Caan. Since then, Laban has help set up numerous companies the most notable being Marigold Projects in Jamaica which went on to sell 49% of its shares to Medicinal Cannabis giant Aphria for a reported USD $80 Million and then XRP Healthcare the first Pharma and Healthcare platform to be built on the XRP Ledger which he Co-founded with his son, transforming global healthcare through mergers, acquisitions and blockchain.
Born and raised in Leytonstone, East London to parents of Jamaican descent, Laban is the youngest of five siblings, brought up single handed by his Mother who worked two jobs to keep himself and sister in a 4 bed Victorian house after outing an abusive father.
Laban aspired to entrepreneurial work from the moment he started school. From the age of nine, he set up his own business cleaning cars, cutting hedges, and bringing in extra money to support his Mum.
At age twelve, Laban was already bringing home more from his out-of-school revenue streams than his mother earned through her full-time position. By the time he was nineteen, Laban had paid off the mortgage on his family’s home and established an international business exporting Russian made “Lada Riva cars” with the aim to support his brothers who had remained in Jamaica, and in the process helping his oldest brother become one of the largest goat farmers in the Caribbean.
Being no stranger to adversity and while exploring the USA, family circumstances forced his business partner to liquidate the export business’ assets. Laban returned home to the UK with just £80 in his pocket and worked tirelessly to realise an entrepreneurial vision that had struck him some years prior. In 1995, Midas Touch was born, later renamed Goldgenie after his successful luxury gold gifts pitch on Dragons Den in 2007, and named after his innovative portable plating device and his pitch to sell the opportunity as a franchise.
Hollywood, Lexus & The Emmy Awards
Laban designed and manufactured an innovative gold-plating process: one which is still at the heart of Goldgenie’s work today. Among his first clients were Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Honda, Toyota and Lexus, who rapidly adopted Goldgenie as their go-to provider for luxury vehicle detailing, emblems and interior aesthetic elements.
Gradually, Laban expanded Goldgenie’s activities to encompass a wide range of consumer-facing industries: telecommunications, jewellery, sports gear, home hardware: his pioneering gold-plating technique saved suppliers huge sums of money, while maintaining the quality necessary in the highest-end luxury products. His growing success earned him an invite to distribute Goldgenie products at the 2005 Emmy awards in America, exclusive rights to the plating of Hindu artefacts in a London temple, and the acclaim and mentorship of Yo! Sushi founder and ex Dragons Den investor Simon Woodroffe (OBE) who Laban holds in high esteem for agreeing to promote his luxury Gold phones after a chance meeting and Simon stating “I believe this young entrepreneur can achieve great things” but who also was against him appearing on Dragons Den as he thought the Dragons treated the contestants with “disrespect and disdain”.
In October of 2007, Laban pitched Goldgenie and its gold-plating technology – and market traction – live on the BBC investment pitching programme ‘Dragon’s Den’. Goldgenie successfully acquired funding, as well as new guidance in James Caan, founder of recruitment organisation Alexander Mann, executive head-hunting firm Humana International and private equity company Hamilton Bradshaw. Laban had also made a lifelong friend and business partner – In 2012 and wanting to expand the business in a different direction Laban made a brave move and purchased all of his shares back from Jame Caan making himself 100% owner of Goldgenie again.
Celebrities & Charity Work
Since then Laban Roomes has attended and supplied luxury gifts in person to the Oscars, created luxury ranges of iPods and iPhones for a host of celebrities such as the Beckhams, Floyd Money Mayweather, Usain Bolt, Mark Wahlberg, Clint Eastwood and Will Smith, to mention just a few. The company has also launched initiatives and campaigns to raise money through donating a percentage of the company’s luxury gift sales to raise much needed cash for several high-profile charities including the Elton John Aids Foundation (EJAF) the Teenage Cancer TRUST and SOS Children’s Villages.
Awards & Investments
Having had great success investing in several start-ups which have grown into large scale businesses, especially within the blockchain and cryptocurrency space, Laban now spends most of his time between Miami, Dubai, Jamaica and Africa where he has family and business interests.
God, Mentors & Comic Book Heroes
Laban puts a large part of his success down to God and the guidance he has received from his various business venture from a child, plus the blessing of always having a mentor whether real or fictional in his life. Laban says “It’s important for someone you love and respect to believe in you, my Mother taught me anything is possible with intention and purpose, she would always say if I want to go to the moon I’ll find a way!”.
Other mentors of Laban who are fictional include Marvel comic book hero the Silver Surfer, possessing the unbeatable characteristic of not stopping or giving up until his mission has been accomplished.
Laban is noted as saying, “Not everyone has the will power to consistently inspire themselves, everyone needs in their life at least one person who believes in them, that can help unlock their true potential”.