23 episodes

Corporate crookedness. Family feuding. Hilariously half-baked decisions. Host Lauren Ober tackles some of the most spectacular business failures of all time, and what could have been done to avoid them. Some of these stories are shocking. Some are funny. Some are just downright sad. But each one will give you a totally new perspective on big business… and big failure. From American Public Media.

Spectacular Failures American Public Media

    • Business
    • 4.4 • 3.9K Ratings

Corporate crookedness. Family feuding. Hilariously half-baked decisions. Host Lauren Ober tackles some of the most spectacular business failures of all time, and what could have been done to avoid them. Some of these stories are shocking. Some are funny. Some are just downright sad. But each one will give you a totally new perspective on big business… and big failure. From American Public Media.

    Blue Apron wilts, then rises to a new challenge

    Blue Apron wilts, then rises to a new challenge

    The meal kit delivery service was almost belly-up before the pandemic hit. But then people stuck cooking at home gave the brand a lifeline. Investors found it tastier than ever, but will customers still hanker for the big blue box once this is all over?Our sponsors this week: Betterhelp: betterhelp.com/spectacular code spectacularNetSuite: netsuite.com/spectacularPolicygenius: policygenius.comSign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter. Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.Spectacular Failures is powered by you. Support the show with a donation at spectacularfailures.org/donate.

    • 35 min
    Forever 21 goes from rags to riches to bankruptcy court

    Forever 21 goes from rags to riches to bankruptcy court

    The mom-and-pop fast-fashion retailer exploded into malls across the globe. But eventually, Forever 21 unraveled like the hem on a cheap crop top.Our sponsors this week:Fiverr: fiverr.com promo code SPECTACULARNetSuite: NetSuite.com/SPECTACULARThe Great Courses Plus: thegreatcoursesplus.com/spectacularSign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter.Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.

    • 35 min
    The curtain falls on a big Broadway company

    The curtain falls on a big Broadway company

    Livent was a showstopper of an operation. But eventually, forgery and fraud stole the scene, the money exited stage left, and the lead actor landed behind bars.Our sponsors this week:Indeed: indeed.com/spectacularNetSuite: netsuite.com/spectacularThe Great Courses Plus: thegreatcoursesplus.com/spectacularSign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter.Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.

    • 41 min
    The toxic tale of the Love Canal fail

    The toxic tale of the Love Canal fail

    When Hooker Chemical sold its infamous toxic waste landfill to the Niagara Falls School Board, the $1 deal left Niagara residents seriously ill. But few believed the company could truly be at fault...until it was too late.

    Our sponsors this week:NetSuite: netsuite.com/spectacularBetterhelp: betterhelp.com/spectacularSign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter.Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.

    • 39 min
    Napster fought the law and the law won

    Napster fought the law and the law won

    The recording industry, Metallica, and ultimately federal court put the brakes on Napster’s music file sharing. But before exiting the stage, Napster changed the way we listen to music—and how much we’re willing to pay for it.

    [Editor’s note - Sept. 1, 2020: This episode has been updated to reflect that “CyberTalk” was a group effort overseen by Jeff Gold. An earlier version characterized it as his solo effort.]

    Our sponsors this week:Bombas: bombas.com/spectacularPolicy Genius: policygenius.comNetSuite: netsuite.com/spectacularSign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter.Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.

    • 38 min
    A dairy giant gets milked

    A dairy giant gets milked

    Got milk? These days, chances are maybe not. Americans have been saying no thanks for years now, and changing consumer tastes have been bad news for what used to be the nation’s largest milk processor, Dean Foods.

    Sign up to receive our brand new newsletter, featuring weekly recommendations from Lauren and the rest of the team at spectacularfailures.org/newsletter.Read the transcript of the episode at spectacularfailures.org.You can follow Spectacular Failures on Twitter at @failureshow and like us at Facebook.com/failureshow. We're @failure_show on Instagram. Follow Lauren Ober on Twitter and Instagram at @oberandout.

    OUR SPONSORS THIS WEEK

    The Great Courses Plus: thegreatcoursesplus.com/spectacular 

    NetSuite: NetSuite.com/spectacular 

    BetterHelp: betterhelp.com/spectacular 

    • 37 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
3.9K Ratings

3.9K Ratings

Venusasaboy89 ,

‘Spectacular’ delivery!

Definitely my favorite new podcast. Lauren’s delivery of the topic (which could be taken into a grim and depressing direction) is wonderfully entertaining and leaves me wanting more. I only wish there was a backlog of episodes so I could binge! Learning from our failures is imperative to success. Yes, I just made that up, but someone who failed more than I have probably said it before....-J PS- Hope I don’t have to wait so long for season 3...

Daawifey ,

Love this podcast

We listen as we drive. We want more! Put together with classic story design and really holds your interest. So much good history here! Thank you!!!!

RizaKhan ,

Try hard host kills the show

Oof. This is tough to listen to.

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