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There’s an awful lot of effort being expended by the investment industry in hunting for unicorns. While the returns for spotting the next Tencent are clearly compelling, it can mean there’s a whole tier of perfectly decent little companies that are not getting the attention they deserve. These may not have the scalability to achieve global domination or the disruptive power to turn an established industry on its head, but if they’re sitting in a defensible niche that allows them to potter along making decent returns year after year, then all power to them.

Invicta Holdings is the sort of company that is never going to cause much of a stirring in the loins of a Sand Hill Road venture capitalist, operating in niches such as wholesaling engineering consumables, tools and equipment that are never going to rival inventing the driverless car for sheer glamour...

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