Summary of the Little Engine Ventures Annual General Meeting 2023

On Thursday, July 20, 2023 more than half of our partners gathered with our managers in downtown Lafayette, Indiana for a report on the previous twelve months and our updates on the go-forward plans. We are grateful for the people who have helped us. While our purpose is to help others climb, we have been […]

2023 Annual Meeting

The partners of Little Engine Ventures are invited to gather. We will confront our progress and blunders over the last 12 months and try to explain how our thinking has evolved since launch and where that may take us on our journey ahead. No questions are off limits. Come early. Stay late. Enjoy our city […]

Self Correcting Dashboards

We scan and assume. It’s in our nature as humans. Little influences pile up. We see red and think bad. We see down and think the worst will continue. As a value investor and armchair philosopher, I pre-empt this natural tendency by making “down” green in our internal dashboards. Huh? What? Our business partnership is […]

Summary of the Little Engine Ventures Annual General Meeting 2022

On Thursday, July 21, 2022 many of our 37 partners gathered in downtown Lafayette, Indiana for a report on the previous twelve months and our updates on the go-forward plans. We began with a video, as we have done for many years past. In this year’s video we showcased a single manager, sitting down in […]

2022 Annual Meeting

The partners of Little Engine Ventures are invited to gather. We will confront our progress and blunders over the last 12 months and try to explain how our thinking has evolved since launch and where that may take us on our journey ahead. No questions are off limits. Come early. Stay late. Enjoy our city […]

Why We Do Not Broadly Distribute the Little Engine Ventures Annual Letter

January is a favored time for searchers, entrepreneurs-through-acquisition, holdco managers and SMBtwit radicals to publish annual letters. I usually get a handful of questions about if I write one and if they might get a copy. It always make me cringe a little. I then spend 30 minutes (or more) thinking about why I don’t […]

Generating Cash

My evolution as an entrepreneur and investor has been marked by two distinct phases. I may be entering into a third phase. Phase 1 began at age 19, when I got my first true line of credit. My father co-signed my first note, set me up with a sweetheart deal that was almost guaranteed to […]

2021 Annual Meeting

The partners of Little Engine Ventures are invited to gather. We will confront our progress and blunders over the last 12 months and try to explain how our thinking has evolved since launch and where that may take us on our journey ahead. No questions are off limits. Come early. Stay late. Enjoy our city […]

Diversification Motive

A business owner should diversify when the market no longer responds profitably enough to justify reinvestment –and there is still entrepreneurial appetite, capacity, and talent remaining. The default should be reinvestment in one’s primary endeavor, where the insights and probabilities are strongest. If a firm begins to lose value, then the owner should make changes […]

Making Order While Retaining Decentralization

Our General Managers run sales and operations. And they’re great. I provide “entrepreneurial services.” Some probably prefer I stand down, wild man. When we launched, I used the phrase “we believe in decentralization” quite often. At the time, I had a vague understanding of what that meant exactly. I figured the simple definition was “Hire […]