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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.

Popular episodes

Complexity Investing & Semiconductors (with NZS Capital)

Nov 3 • 01:44:14

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 semi...

Standard Oil Part II

Oct 18 • 02:20:41

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 i...

Michael Mauboussin Master Class — Moats, Skill, Luck, Decision Making and a Whole Lot More

Oct 5 • 01:24:56

We sit down with the one & only Michael Mauboussin to dive deep into his incredible body of work: untangling skill and luck, measuring moats, persistence of returns in venture capital, decision making and — particularly timely — expectations investing and how to think about valuations in the current 2021 market environment. (!!) Michael's work is maybe our most frequent ca...

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Standard Oil Part I

Sep 22 • 02:12:40

It's time. We dive into original American capitalist mega winner, Standard Oil, and its legendary founder John D. Rockefeller. This company and man almost defy characterization — Elon, Bezos, Gates, Buffett... they've got nothing on old John D. Not only was Rockefeller the wealthiest person in modern human history, his company wrote the blueprint for today's corporations a...


Sep 7 • 02:34:04

It's time. We dive into the unbelievable history behind the quietest technology giant of them all — and as of recording the world's 9th (!) most valuable company — the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. This story checks every box in the Acquired pantheon of greatness: China, America, MIT, Don Valentine, Silicon Valley, "real men" looking silly, and... moats liter...

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Kevin Rose from Web 2.0 to Web3

Aug 30 • 01:40:19

We sit down with the one & only Kevin Rose to talk about his journey from pioneering Web 2.0 with Digg to leading the charge on Web3 and NFT + DeFi investing as a partner at True Ventures and his new show Modern Finance. We cover it all — TechTV, Digg’s true origin story, Milk, Hodinkee, interviewing Beeple and where MoFi goes from here. This was an episode we’ve been want...

Andreessen Horowitz Part II

Aug 10 • 02:52:28

Alright, backstory's out of the way, and Acquired is rolling three hours deep on the venture firm that changed the game for everyone — a16z....

Andreessen Horowitz Part I

Jul 27 • 02:06:03

We kick off Season 9 with a classic: Part I of the a16z story. How did this brand new venture firm charge out of the gates in 2009, going from zero to disrupting the entire venture industry overnight? You probably know Marc & Ben's history with Netscape and Loudcloud/Opsware... but what about the Black Panthers, Nintendo 64, Al Gore, Doug Leone, Masayoshi Son, and an epic ...

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Special: Solana (with CEO Anatoly Yakovenko)

Jul 19 • 01:14:53

We sit down with the hottest new protocol layer in crypto today: Solana, and its cofounder Anatoly Yakovenko, who is the CEO of Solana Labs. If you listened to our Ethereum episode or follow crypto even at a cursory level, you've likely heard of Solana and its ability to scale transactions thousands of times higher than Ethereum. And, unlike other so-called "ETH killers", ...


Jul 6 • 03:01:32

We close out Season 8 with the most ambitious organization we've ever covered on Acquired: Ethereum, and it's celebrity wunderkind founder Vitalik Buterin. If you thought Mark Zuckerberg IPO-ing Facebook at $100B by age 27 was something, just wait until you hear the story of this high school junior creating $500B (!!) of market cap by the same age — and oh yeah, maybe seed...

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