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Investing Built on Relationships and Trust.

Welcome to People 1st Advisors

Founded in 2017, People 1st Advisors (P1A) is a Chicago-based, veteran-owned private investment firm that deploys its own capital into a growing portfolio of people-centric small and middle-market businesses.  The company has achieved outsized financial returns by extracting hidden value and unleashing it through proven leadership.

To partner with us or join our growing team, click here.


​​​​​​People 1st


We build mutual trust and respect with our leadership teams, owners and investors.  Our People-centric operating model is embedded in our culture.

​​​​​​“Our investment approach is different.  We are not driven by top down business plans.  Instead, we spend time getting to know our people, and working alongside them within each business to formulate the best path forward together.  This is why we win."


– Bryce Bowman, Founder of P1A




We seek business owners and investment partners with extraordinary GRIT and a shared belief that investment value comes from the people who run our businesses.  When we see these leadership traits in the marketplace, we aggressively invest.

“As West Point graduates and United States Army Veterans, we recognize the high degree of impact leadership can make within an organization. It is always on our mind and at the forefront of making any P1A investment.”  


– Erik VanLaningham, President of P1A



We put our own capital to work in each deal and have a track record of delivering outsized financial returns.

​​​​​​​​​​​​“We deliver.  We are who we say we are and that is foundational at P1A.  Through market downturns, pandemics and other unpredictable complexities, we have maintained an impeccable reputation in the marketplace and have seen first hand how our model consistently delivers outsized financial returns.  I am energized about People 1st Advisors’ portfolio vision and entering this next phase of accelerated growth.” 


– Bryce Bowman, Founder of P1A

Image by Pedro Lastra

Let's Grow Together

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