Ray Kroc

With all the mega success stories of young entrepreneurs like Bill Gates of Microsoft, Sergey Brin and Larry Page of Google and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook one can be left to wonder whether it’s too late to become an entrepreneur if you’re not in your twenties.

On today’s monthly CFAX 1070 segment on investing and entrepreneurship we discuss late in life entrepreneurs like Ray Kroc (who bought McDonald’s when he was 52), Harland Sanders (who founded KFC when he was 65) and Robin Chase (who founded Zipcar at 42).

The short answer is, “no”, mid-life is not too late to have a big win!

As always click the following link and fast forward to about 32 minutes.


Lessons Learned

Today Ian Jessop and I talked about some of lessons I’ve learned through building, running and selling two of my businesses.

Click this link and fast forward to about 32 minutes and listen in: https://soundcloud.com/ian-jessop-cfax/march-2-2pm

Some of those key lessons include:

– focus on customer cash over all other sources of cash;

– let underperforming staff go more quickly, and;

– invest less of my own money and grow the business more from customer cash than equity.

We also talked about how entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone and there are good arguments for some to go the job route. Some of these include:

– paid education;

– being held accountable by your employer;

– being part of bigger game;

– forming meaningful relationships, and;

– having more disposable income.

Refer to this entrepreneur.com article for more insights: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/242951.


There are political entrepreneurs who exploit relationships with politicians to enrich themselves and there are market entrepreneurs who rely on providing their products or services better, faster, cheaper and more efficiently.

On today’s CFAX 1070 segment on investment and entrepreneurship we talk about Uber and taxi companies, Charles Schwab and the US steel industry, Robert Fulton and Cornelius Vanderbilt and the steamship industry before the turn of the century and even WestJet and Air Canada. You can guess which of these were political entrepreneurs and which ones weren’t!

As always, fast forward to about 32 minutes and listen in: https://soundcloud.com/ian-jessop-cfax/february-2-2pm

On December 29 we had an interesting hour long segment on entrepreneurship and investing on CFAX 1070.


In the first half hour we discussed Uber which is turning the point-to-point transportation (ie: taxi) industry on its head. Taxi cabs have operated in an artificial market protected by regulations that rarely if ever provide a better or safer service for the customer. In fact in cities like Vancouver and San Francisco where there are 1 and 1.9 cabs per thousand people, this regulated market has only protected the cab drivers.

Uber has developed an application and pricing scheme that is upsetting the whole sector and providing consumers with choice.


In the second half we welcome Mayank Chauhan of NutTea of http://www.nutteabar.com who pitches me on his start-up business which has developed an organic, tea infused energy bar.

Click here and listen in: https://soundcloud.com/ian-jessop-cfax/december-29-2pm

Uber and Entrepreneurship

December 28, 2014

Tomorrow we are trying something new on CFAX 1070. We will have a full hour from 2 to 3pm.

In the first half we’re talking about the incredible success and growth of Uber.

In the second half a recent University of Victoria graduate will pitch me on his business opportunity and I’ll critique his concept in the last fifteen minutes.

Tune in, it should be fun!

Generally speaking I am of the view that we should tax those things we want less of and not tax those things we want more of.

So, in a perfect world I would eliminate taxes on income, capital and investment returns and tax consumption more heavily. I might even go further and tax certain types of consumption differently (high rates on cigarettes, alcohol and junk food and low rates on hybrid cars and healthy foods).

At his link you may read a critique from Bill Gates on Thomas Piketty’s book on capital. I think Gates makes some great points, including how to avoid dynastic wealth.


Bad News

December 21, 2014

“As a corollary let me know promptly if there’s significant bad news. I can handle bad news but I don’t like to deal with it after its festered for awhile.” – Warren Buffett