Ben Gilbert and David Rosenthal

technology, business, news
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.
Wondering where to start with Acquired? Fans of the podcast have clipped their favorite moments: check out a list of the best episodes below. Want more podcast clips? Get the Shuffle app.

Best Episodes


Dec 11, 2020

"Airbnb leads to rent increases across the United States :( "




Over 13 years after its founding, one of the defining startup companies of the past decade finally makes its public debut — and boy was it a big one. But for all the hype (and all the legitimately great things Airbnb has accomplished), this is a company that looks very different today than in theRead more

Special: Acquired x Indie Hackers

Dec 17, 2020

"Why Paul Graham started Hacker News? 😁"



As regular listeners know, we typically cover some of the biggest companies who often receive the most media attention (see Airbnb and DoorDash). But today's episode is a little different. In our conversation with Courtland Allen of Indie Hackers, the largest community of startup founders, we diveRead more

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Special: Sequoia Capital's Investment Playbook (with Alfred Lin)

Feb 1, 2021

" Not necessarily last Not just execution, but differentiated execution matters "




We cover Sequoia Capital a lot on this show. Not only across our now four(!) dedicated episodes, but across a stunning nearly 50% of recent season companies where Sequoia was a primary or only investor — the most of any venture firm by an enormous margin. Today in this very special episode, we diveRead more

Twitter (with Dick Costolo)

Oct 28, 2020

"Twitter pioneered feed-based ads."



A week before the 2020 US Presidential election, former Twitter CEO Dick Costolo joins us to tell the story of a company that has impacted all of our lives (political and otherwise) like none other. While it's easy to forget now, a very viable alternate history exists where it's Twitter, notRead more

Slack + Salesforce Emergency Pod with Packy McCormick of Not Boring

Dec 2, 2020

"“Have either of you seen Salesforce’s interface?”"



Acquired is live on the scene covering Salesforce's blockbuster $27.7B acquisition of Slack, with the help of the internet's #1 Slack bull (and top internet analyst in his own right), Packy McCormick of Not Boring. We dissect the deal itself, Slack's relatively short life as a public company, theRead more

Special: Superhuman Part II - Designing Software to Feel like a Game (with Rahul Vohra)

Nov 12, 2020

"Tools for everyone"



Superstar past guest and Superhuman CEO Rahul Vorha joins us for a deep dive on how Superhuman applies concepts from game design to building productivity software. We're not talking points and badges — we mean hardcore, Unreal Engine-style technical innovations and Fortnite-level understanding ofRead more


Sep 30, 2020

"If China creates a NBA competitor, it could be fatal to the NBA 😕"


On the eve of the 2020 NBA Finals, we dive DEEP into the history and business model of the league behind the world's 2nd largest and fastest growing major sport. How did the NBA grow from merely an excuse to monetize hockey arena off-nights into a global powerhouse with more reach and influence andRead more

Special: Invest Like the Best on Acquired

Oct 7, 2020


On this special episode of Acquired, we're joined by a master interviewer himself, Patrick O'Shaughnessy from Invest Like the Best. We turn the tables and cover the most fascinating story he's never told on ILTB... his own! What is O’Shaughnessy Asset Management, and how are they bringingRead more

Special: Acquired x My First Million

Sep 9, 2020



Acquired teams up with the My First Million podcast for a “best of both worlds” crossover episode. First we go deep, “Acquired style”, on the wild story of MFM host Shaan Puri’s bought, sold, and then bought-again OG social networking site Bebo, and then we turn the tables and brainstorm startupRead more


Dec 10, 2020

"Dashers are actually pretty different from Uber drivers — Uber overestimated the syngeries here "

Live from the scene of its blockbuster IPO, we recount the crazy, roller coaster journey of this "Palo Alto delivery company". From Sand Hill darling during their Series A and B fundraises to all but left-for-dead during the great unicorn massacre of 2015/16, DoorDash has clawed their way back fromRead more
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