Episodes
We kick off Season 7 with a bang: Pinduoduo, the incredible five year-old Chinese mashup of "Costco and Disneyland" (as self-described in their IPO prospectus) which recently became the fastest company ever to pass $100B market capitalization. What makes PDD so special, and how were they able to enter a market that everyone considered "already won" and disrupt massive entrenched competitors Alibaba and JD.com? Tune in to find out!
Published 07/16/20
On this preview of our most recent LP Show episode, Benchmark General Partner Sarah Tavel joins us for a master class on consumer investing. We start with why invest in consumer at all (given the inherent risks of its "hit-driven nature"), then deep dive on marketplace investing and wrap up with social, gaming and consumer transactional businesses.
Published 07/07/20
We close out Season 6 with the story of perhaps the single most successful media entrepreneur of all-time: Oprah Winfrey, and her juggernaut conglomerate Harpo Studios.
Published 06/25/20
On the eve of SpaceX's historic scheduled launch of its first human spaceflight mission, we tell the incredible story of its rise from ragtag rocket jocks to the most disruptive and advanced force in aerospace today.
Published 05/26/20
When you think of Intel today, you probably think of the microprocessor company. Maybe you also think about about 'Intel Inside' and their famous jingle. You might even think "big boring public company". But for the first two decades of Intel's life, none of those things were true. We tell the incredible story of how the company that started it all clawed back from a crisis that brought them near death, and of one man who rose as the survivor, leader, and a legend: the late, great Andy Grove.
Published 05/12/20
Want an edge in your business like Jason? Join thousands of other founders, CEOs, VCs, product people and engineers learning in the Acquired Limited Partner program at: https://glow.fm/acquired/ We're joined by the one and only Jason Calacanis for this very special episode, wherein we chronicle Jason's journey from a kid porter in the barrooms of Brooklyn to building the largest independent media business in tech, becoming the "3rd or 4th greatest seed investor of all-time" (and the...
Published 04/29/20
Published 04/29/20
Missing Acquired? We are too. But the world's not done adapting just yet, and neither are we. So get ready for (in the immortal words of Sammy Hagar) the best of both worlds: an Acquired + Adapting crossover lollapalooza... at Podapalooza 2020! We'll be covering the mother of all adaptations, Intel's abandonment of the memory business in favor of microprocessors in the mid-1980's. What is Podapalooza? It's a charity podcast festival that our friends over at Glow are putting on next weekend,...
Published 04/15/20
On March 5th 2020, Sequoia Capital published a Medium post entitled ‘Coronavirus: The Black Swan of 2020’. The memo minces no words, admonishing founders & CEOs to “question every assumption about your business”, and portends that “as Darwin surmised, those who [will] survive ‘are not the strongest or the most intelligent, but the most adaptable to change.’” We’re joined by longtime Sequoia partner and head of the firm’s US business Roelof Botha to discuss on what Sequoia saw leading up...
Published 03/31/20
The world has changed. Acquired is changing too: we’re taking a pause from our normal episodes. The world doesn’t need stories of M&A and IPOs right now. But it does still need stories of great companies and great leaders. So we’re taking everything that we’ve put into Acquired - our format, our infrastructure, and the way we can reach all of you - and launching Adapting. Adapting is a series all about doing just that -- changing to fit what the world needs right now, not what it needed...
Published 03/20/20
Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://glow.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) 5 years and 100+ episodes into Acquired, there’s been one question we get asked more than any other: what are the best acquisitions of all-time, and what can we learn from them? We thought it was time to formalize our answers. So here it is, the Acquired Greatest Hits album. :) We also put together an accompanying blog post, which goes into greater detail on the numbers and methodology behind out...
Published 03/17/20
In the absence of our SXSW live show, and with everything going on in the markets and in the world, we're hosting a virtual meetup / happy hour to bring the Acquired community together: When: Thursday, March 12, at 5:30pm PDT Where: https://zoom.us/j/4636176531  What to bring: yourselves and your webcams! Can't wait to see you all then. Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy out there, -Ben & David
Published 03/11/20
Zapier pioneered remote work. And helped to create the "no code" movement. Hear their story.
Published 03/05/20
The wait is over. Acquired returns with a very special Part II of the Sequoia Capital story, joined by the very best person in the world to help us tell it - Doug Leone. Doug is incredibly candid and insightful about all that has gone into building the modern Sequoia: from winning Google and missing Facebook, to the enormous (and enormously successful) bet on decentralized expansion in China and India, to the firm’s “proudest moment” at the depth of the dot com bust.
Published 02/18/20
We kick off Season 6 with an Acquired Classic: Facebook’s $22B purchase of WhatsApp in 2014, which still ranks as the largest acquisition of a private VC-backed startup in history. Yet despite that enormous pricetag, as we sit here 5+ years later WhatsApp actually generates LESS revenue than the meager ~$20m it was bringing in at the time of acquisition. Was this this worst acquisition of all-time, or a brilliant strategic chess move by Mark Zuckerberg & co? Tune in as we render...
Published 01/29/20
Acquired closes out Season 5 and 2019 with a radical look into both the past and future decades of startup company building, investing and - yes, exiting - in conversation with legendary Lean Startup author and Long-Term Stock Exchange CEO Eric Ries.
Published 12/30/19
Coming to you live from the University of Washington, Ben and David are joined by hundreds of awesome Seattle listeners (and a few non-Seattle listeners!) to cover the meteoric rise of trucking industry disruptor and hometown hero Convoy. How did Dan and Convoy go from nervously conducting market research at truck stops on I-5 to one of the largest logistics companies and fastest-growing startups in the world in just four short years, raising over $650m (not a typo) along the way? Tune in to...
Published 12/19/19
We take Acquired to the Old Town Road to cover the amazing story behind the biggest global sensation of 2019 — and the highest valued private startup in the world — TikTok. How did a mid-30 year old UX architect at enterprise software giant SAP wind up creating Gen Z’s favorite social app that’s now rivaling Instagram in global MAU? And perhaps most importantly, why is TikTok such an important product & technology innovation that all of us should be learning from? Tune in for all the...
Published 12/09/19
The Flywheel is strong with this one. We dive deep into the origins of one of the boldest business strategy decisions of our time: Disney CEO Bob Iger’s attempt to buck the Innovator’s Dilemma - and forego billions of dollars in cashflow from Netflix and pay TV providers - in order to establish a direct distribution relationship with its customers for the first time in the company’s history.
Published 11/25/19
We're loading up the Acquired live experience and trucking north (for David at least) for our first independent live show in Seattle! Hot on the heels of the company's recent $400m fundraise at a $2.7B valuation, we'll be joined by Convoy CEO Dan Lewis to dive deep into the origins of this massive transportation logistics disruptor.  Register to attend here: http://acquired.fm/liveshow Date: December 17th, 2019 Time: 5:00-8:00pm (subject to change) Location: TBD, Seattle Hope to see many...
Published 11/18/19
On this episode of the Limited Partner bonus show, we are joined by Chetan Puttagunta, General Partner on Benchmark, talking his investment philosophies, enterprise technology trends, and the uniqueness of Benchmark. This episode is a preview of the hour-long LP-only show.
Published 11/11/19
You’ve seen the news. We give WeWork the full Acquired treatment in all its tragic glory, joined by very special guest Dan Primack of Axios. Where did it all go wrong? Why is SoftBank buying 80% of the company? Where does “We” go from here? Tune in.
Published 10/25/19
We’re joined by the legendary Nolan Bushnell, founder not only of Atari, but also the only person ever to hire Steve Jobs, the recipient of Sequoia Capital’s first-ever investment, and the creator of Chuck E. Cheese, the canonical GPS navigation arrow, and a little project that would go on to become Pixar. We cover it all in this special episode!
Published 10/15/19
Acquired dives into the history behind storied venture firm Sequoia Capital and its legendary founder, Don Valentine. Part 1 tells Don’s story, starting from humble beginnings born to uneducated parents in Yonkers, NY, through shaping the fabric of Silicon Valley first as head of Sales & Marketing at both Fairchild and National Semiconductor, and then for generations to come via his pioneering concept of “company building” at Sequoia Capital.
Published 09/26/19
Special announcement: we're hosting a San Francisco meetup! It's been too long and and we can't wait to see many of you. It will be Wednesday, September 25 2019, exact time and location TBD but likely starting at 6pm. You can register at https://www.acquired.fm/meetup  The event is free, but space will be limited so please only register if you know you can make it.  Hope to see many of you there! -Ben and David 
Published 09/13/19