144 episodes

Every company has a story.

Learn the playbooks that built the world’s greatest companies — and how you can apply them as a founder, operator, or investor.

Acquired Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal

    • Technology
    • 4.7 • 3 Ratings

Every company has a story.

Learn the playbooks that built the world’s greatest companies — and how you can apply them as a founder, operator, or investor.

    CAA (with Michael Ovitz)

    CAA (with Michael Ovitz)

    Season 9 ends at the beginning — with the man who changed Hollywood forever and wrote the blueprint for A16Z’s upending of Silicon Valley a generation later, Michael Ovitz and his “Dream Factory”, Creative Artists Agency. From Jurassic Park to Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, Goodfellas, Rain Man, ER, and even the Coca-Cola polar bears... almost nothing in 80s and 90s pop culture didn’t have CAA’s stamp on it. Speaking of dreams, this episode was totally one for us, and we hope you enjoy listening to it as much as we did making it!!
    Big news!! All back catalog LP Show episodes are now free and available to anyone! You can follow our new public LP Show feed here. It's already chock-full of 60+ great episodes like our VC Fundamentals series, interviews with founders of top early-stage startups, and master classes on pricing, marketplaces, SaaS investing and many more topics. Happy listening and happy holidays to everyone!!
    Sponsors:
    Thank you to our presenting sponsor for all of Season 9, Pilot.com! Pilot takes care of startups' bookkeeping, tax and CFO services so busy founders can focus on what matters. To paraphrase Jeff Bezos's AWS analogy: bookkeeping and tax don't make your product any better — so you should let Pilot handle them for you. Pilot is in fact backed by Bezos himself, along with other all-star investors including Sequoia, Index, and Stripe. They are truly the gold standard for startup bookkeeping, and many of the companies we work with run on them. You can get in touch with Pilot here: https://bit.ly/acquiredfmpilot , and Acquired listeners get 20% off their first 6 months! (use the link above) Thank you as well to PitchBook and to Nord Security. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredpitchbook https://bit.ly/acquirednord Links:
    Michael’s (truly excellent) book, Who Is Michael Ovitz?: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07B2HS77M/ ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 1 hr 48 min
    FTX (with Sam Bankman-Fried & Mario Gabriele)

    FTX (with Sam Bankman-Fried & Mario Gabriele)

    We tell the definitive (audio!) story behind FTX's "speed run" — how this upstart crypto exchange became the fastest company in history to reach a $25B valuation, just two years after founding. And to do so we're joined by not one but TWO of the very best people in the world to help: FTX's wunderkind CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, and special guest host Mario Gabriele from The Generalist, who Sam gave extensive access to FTX's internal data, employees, and investors for his canonical 36,000 word trilogy on the company this past summer. We cover it all — from the "$20m/day" trade that started everything, to Tom Brady & Gisele, to Sam testifying last week in front of Congress. Don't blink or you might miss it!


    Big news!! All back catalog LP Show episodes are now free and available to anyone!! You can follow our new public LP Show feed here in the podcast player of your choice. It's already chock-full of 60+ great episodes like our VC Fundamentals series, interviews with founders of top early-stage startups, and master classes on pricing, marketplaces, SaaS investing and many more topics. Happy listening and happy holidays to everyone!!

    Sponsors:
    Thank you to our presenting sponsor for all of Season 9, Pilot.com! Pilot takes care of startups' bookkeeping, tax and CFO services so busy founders can focus on what matters. To paraphrase Jeff Bezos's AWS analogy: bookkeeping and tax don't make your product any better — so you should let Pilot handle them for you. Pilot is in fact backed by Bezos himself, along with other all-star investors including Sequoia, Index, and Stripe. They are truly the gold standard for startup bookkeeping, and many of the companies we work with run on them. You can get in touch with Pilot here: https://bit.ly/acquiredfmpilot , and Acquired listeners get 20% off their first 6 months! (use the link above) Thank you as well to PitchBook and to Nord Security. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredpitchbook https://bit.ly/acquirednord
    Links:
    The Generalist's FTX Trilogy: https://www.readthegeneralist.com/briefing/ftx-1 FTX: https://ftx.com FTX US: https://ftx.us Sam's Twitter: https://twitter.com/SBF_FTX
    ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 1 hr 32 min
    7 Powers with Hamilton Helmer

    7 Powers with Hamilton Helmer

    You've heard us talk about him every episode for the past two years... but until now most of you have never actually heard us talk to him! To celebrate the LP Show going public, we've remastered our first, canonical interview with Hamilton Helmer, originally released as an LP episode in March 2020. Hamilton’s 7 Powers framework gives a deep, academic investigation to the question, “what creates an enduring company?” This episode is an absolute must-listen for anyone working or investing in tech (and beyond), and we're so excited to finally make it available to everyone.

    And if you want more episodes like this, we have good news... all back catalog LP Show episodes are now free and available to anyone! You can follow our new public LP Show feed here in the podcast player of your choice. It's already chock-full of 60+ great episodes like our VC Fundamentals series, interviews with founders of top early-stage startups, and master classes on pricing, marketplaces, SaaS investing and many more topics. Happy listening and happy holidays to everyone!
     
    Sponsors:
    7 Powers on Amazon
    Sponsors:
    Thanks to SoftBank Latin America for being our presenting sponsor for this special episode. If you are an entrepreneur, employee, other investor or simply someone who's interested in learning about the best young companies in LatAm right now, get in touch with them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredsoftbanklatam , and tell them that Ben and David sent you! You can find career opportunities at the portfolio companies here: https://www.latinamericafund.com/careers Thank you as well to Modern Treasury and to Fundrise. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredmoderntreasury (and you can find our reverse interview with them at https://www.moderntreasury.com/acquired ) https://bit.ly/acquiredfundrise
    ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Not Boring (with Packy McCormick)

    Not Boring (with Packy McCormick)

    When does a creator become a company? Who says that media companies — or venture firms — have to be organizations? How high is the ceiling on one person + the internet? Acquired has the answers and they are... Not Boring. 🙂

    Big news!! All back catalog LP Show episodes are now free and available to anyone!! You can follow our new public LP Show feed here http://pod.link/acquiredlp in the podcast player of your choice. It's already chock-full of 60+ great episodes like our VC Fundamentals series, interviews with founders of top early-stage startups, and master classes on pricing, marketplaces, SaaS investing and many more topics. Happy listening and happy holidays to everyone!!

    Sponsors:
    Thank you to our presenting sponsor for all of Season 9, Pilot.com! Pilot takes care of startups' bookkeeping, tax and CFO services so busy founders can focus on what matters. To paraphrase Jeff Bezos's AWS analogy: bookkeeping and tax don't make your product any better — so you should let Pilot handle them for you. Pilot is in fact backed by Bezos himself, along with other all-star investors including Sequoia, Index, and Stripe. They are truly the gold standard for startup bookkeeping, and many of the companies we work with run on them. You can get in touch with Pilot here: https://bit.ly/acquiredfmpilot , and Acquired listeners get 20% off their first 6 months! (use the link above) Thank you as well to PitchBook and to Nord Security. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredpitchbook https://bit.ly/acquirednord Links:
    Not Boring: https://www.notboring.co/ Proto-Not Boring: https://www.packym.com/blog/nyc-debate-club Not Boring's first sponsor deck: https://projector.com/story/2cb6296d-e229-4774-839c-efbf86d7f69f?scene=7127c7a0 Jake Singer's Not Boring Flywheel: https://theflywheel.substack.com/p/not-boring-packy-m Proof Ben was famous even before Acquired: https://web.archive.org/web/20150814041757/https://www.seattletimes.com/business/high-octane-leader-drives-microsoftrsquos-innovation-garage/
    Carve Outs:
    Velcro swaddles (dad life...): https://www.amazon.com/s?k=velcro+swaddle An Engineer's Hype-Free Observations on Web3: https://www.psl.com/feed-posts/web3-engineer-take Rabbits: https://www.amazon.com/Rabbits-Novel-Terry-Miles-ebook/dp/B08HY29VM2
    ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 2 hrs 44 min
    Complexity Investing & Semiconductors (with NZS Capital)

    Complexity Investing & Semiconductors (with NZS Capital)

    Of our 65+ sources for the TSMC episode, one stood above the rest: a wonderful Knowledge Project episode with Brinton Johns and Jon Bathgate of NZS Capital laying out the state of the semiconductor market. When coincidentally we met Brinton a week later, we knew fate was telling us we had to dig deeper. It turns out NZS has a lot more to teach Acquired than just about semis! Here we dive into their fascinating philosophy of "complexity investing", which was born out of their interactions with the world-famous Santa Fe Institute (of W. Brian Arthur and Increasing Returns fame!)... and of course we also throw in some semiconductor shop-talk for good measure. :)

    If you love Acquired and want more, join our LP Community for access to over 50 LP-only episodes, monthly Zoom calls, and live access for big events like emergency pods and book club discussions with authors. We can't wait to see you there. Join here at: https://acquired.fm/lp/

    Sponsors:
    Thanks to SoftBank Latin America for being our presenting sponsor for this special episode. If you are an entrepreneur, employee, other investor or simply someone who's interested in learning about the best young companies in LatAm right now, get in touch with them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredsoftbanklatam , and tell them that Ben and David sent you! You can get in touch with their portfolio company Banco Inter and their CEO João Vitor Menin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/joãovitormenin/ Thank you as well to Modern Treasury and to Fundrise. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredmoderntreasury (and you can find our reverse interview with them at https://www.moderntreasury.com/acquired ) https://bit.ly/acquiredfundrise
    Links:
    NZS Capital: https://www.nzscapital.com The Santa Fe Institute: https://www.santafe.edu NZS's white paper on Complexity Investing: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5ca38f3216b6405d11e3d4b4/t/60131df6a8d27d63432ea5ff/1611865607574/Complexity_2021update-v9pt2.pdf Brinton & Jon on The Knowledge Project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6NUO_bymuA Twitter: Brinton: https://twitter.com/bjohns3 Jon: https://twitter.com/jbathgate Brad: https://twitter.com/bradsling
    ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 1 hr 44 min
    Standard Oil Part II

    Standard Oil Part II

    We bring the epic saga of Standard Oil and John D. Rockefeller to a close (for now) with two of history's greatest second acts: Rockefeller's pioneering of modern philanthropy (and really modern life itself), and perhaps the single greatest shareholder value "unlock" of all-time in the breakup of Standard Oil. And like any great American saga, of course the good guys win in the end. The only question is... just who were the good guys??
    If you love Acquired and want more, join our LP Community for access to over 50 LP-only episodes, monthly Zoom calls, and access for live events and discussions with episode guests. We can't wait to see you there. Join here at: https://acquired.fm/lp/

    Sponsors:
    Thank you to Pilot for being our presenting sponsor for all of Acquired Season 9! Pilot takes care of startups' bookkeeping, tax and CFO services so busy founders can focus on what matters. To paraphrase Jeff Bezos's AWS analogy: bookkeeping and tax don't make your product any better — so you should let Pilot handle them for you. Pilot is in fact backed by Bezos himself, along with other all-star investors including Sequoia, Index, and Stripe. They are truly the gold standard for startup bookkeeping, and many of the companies we work with run on them. You can get in touch with Pilot here: https://bit.ly/acquiredfmpilot , and Acquired listeners get 20% off their first 6 months! (use the link above) Thank you as well to PitchBook and to Nord Security. You can learn more about them at: https://bit.ly/acquiredpitchbook https://bit.ly/acquirednord
    Links:
    Titan by Ron Chernow: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1400077303/ Episode sources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PzIts5VVgKhE70sAeHnLKcmDktTkXRgEVtuHDktfNCw/edit?usp=sharing
    Carve Outs:
    The to-be-announced (as of recording) M1X MacBook Pro... Starfish Space: https://www.starfishspace.com/ Peloton: https://www.onepeloton.com ‍Note: Acquired hosts and guests may hold assets discussed in this episode. This podcast is not investment advice, and is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only. You should do your own research and make your own independent decisions when considering any financial transactions.

    • 2 hrs 20 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
3 Ratings

3 Ratings

Muhanad Mukashfi ,

Get your paper and pen ready

initially i got this podcast, thinking it would be nice to have the story script, soon as I started listening, I knew its more than story telling. it’s a master class. you get the story headline, the "relevant" background and more excitingly the analysis and rating.
A must listen.

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