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Think Like An Owner

The Think Like an Owner podcast seeks out conversations with small company owners and investors to learn how to acquire and run small companies, with a focus on search funds, micro private equity, and permanent capital.


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Trilogy Search Series Ep.1: Nikita Sunilkumar & Kush Das – Ep.106

Welcome to the first episode in our trilogy search partner series with great entrepreneurs and investors from the traditional search world. Today, I am joined by Nikita Sunilkumar and Kush Das who both search and acquired home healthcare businesses through the traditional search process. Kush acquired Ennoble Care and works as a CEO today. Nikita acquired Crown Health in June 2020 and, in fact, just recently sold in early 2022. Both Nikita and Kush are fantastically talented entrepreneurs, as well as being friends which will be

Michael Curry & Keith Burns – Earn The Right to Lead – Ep.105

My guests on this episode are Michael Curry and Keith Burns who together have acquired 11 diagnostic radiation and other physics services businesses since 2014 through their platform Apex Physics Partners. This episode is loaded with wisdom and insights. I had a number of alternative titles I considered based on quotes for the conversation like “the CEO of Delta doesn’t know how to fly” or “putting out fires with your face.” Ultimately, earning the right to lead felt right as we talk

Lori Harrington & Bruce Vanderzyde – Searcher and Seller Perspectives – Ep.104

My guests on this episode are Lori Harrington and Bruce Vanderzyde. Lori launched a search in October 2020 and recently acquired Bruce’s company Anterra Tech at the end of 2021, which offers business intelligence software for the construction and real estate industries. This episode is a great discussion of how building a better relationship with a seller, negotiating upfront, bringing great advisors, and emphasizing strong and frequent communication can lead to a successful deal. Whether you’re buying or selling a business, this conversation

Live From SMBash: Justin Burris and Tim Ludwig on Majority Search – Ep.103

My guests on this episode are Justin Burris and Tim Ludwig who together have co-founded a new search investment fund named Majority Search. Majority Search aims to be the preferred buyer of small companies while giving searchers the chance to own the majority of the companies they operate. This is a brand-new model they’ve spent the last year working on, and I’m so excited to see it finally become public.

Cross-Post: Owned and Operated with Alex Bridgeman

This week is a bonus episode. We are cross posting a guest appearance I had on John Wilson’s Owned and Operated podcast. I’m a big fan of John and enjoy his podcast immensely, and I wanted to share it with you all. In this episode, I share more about my philosophy behind the Operator’s Handbook and all the ins and outs you want to know about podcasting. Near the end, I manage to turn the mic

Greg Geronemus – Traditional Search Misconceptions – Ep.102

My guest on this episode is Greg Geronemus, co-founder and managing partner of Footbridge Partners, a traditional search investment firm. This is my second episode with Greg, the first being episode 17 back in April 2020, where Greg shared his experience acquiring and operating his search company SmarTours and launching Footbridge. Well, two years later, Greg and his partner David have raised that fund and are halfway through their investment period with a budding portfolio of searchers. In this second episode, Greg shares his view on the

Mehtab Bhogal – How to Fix a Failing Ecommerce Business – Ep.101

My guest on this episode is Mehtab Bhogal, co-founder of Karta Ventures. Karta is a Canadian based e-commerce acquirer investing primarily in e-commerce turnarounds, a corner of the world I didn’t even know existed but that is incredibly fascinating. This episode is one of my recent favorites because of Mehtab’s ability to share high level insights and then, in the next sentence, dive deep into obscure e-commerce details. If you

Sam Shepler – Video Testimonials for Growing Companies – Ep.100

My guest on this episode is Sam Shepler. Sam is the founder of Testimonial Hero, a company he bootstrapped that helps companies create more effective video customer testimonials. Sam and I spend much of the episode talking about how to create great testimonials for your company and what the driving reasons are for using video over text or other mediums. In addition to being focused on a really interesting part of a sales process, Testimonial Hero itself is an interesting case study

Robert Graham – Running Two Businesses, in the Healthcare Space and in the Search Fund Space – Ep.99

My guest on this episode is Robert Graham. Robert worked in management roles at Eaton prior to attending Harvard Business School, after which he worked in investment banking and private equity. Eventually, he decided to search for a business after seeing his HBS classmates do it, and today Robert is Managing Partner at Pillar Health Group, the holding company for four healthcare businesses he acquired together as a searcher. He’s

Eric Friend – A Conversation About the 100+ Year Old Friend Family Business of Print – Ep.98

My guest on this episode is Eric Friend. I reached out to Eric after seeing him talking on Twitter about his family’s printing business Friend Paper, which was founded in 1908 in Zion, Illinois, by Eric’s great grandfather. As a print publisher through our quarterly publication called the Operator’s Handbook, I was curious to hear what ideas he had on using print as a content medium. It turns out he’s

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Letters

Each year I write an annual letter to readers and listeners to reflect on the evolution of the podcast and my personal growth.