Podcast

Acquired

Every company has a story. Acquired goes behind the scenes of the biggest tech IPOs and acquisitions of all time.

Episodes

  • The Lyft IPO

    Mar 30 2019

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://glow.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Call it the playoffs. Call it the Olympics. Call it March Madness. No matter which sports analogy you borrow, it falls short of capturing what Lyft's IPO yesterday kicked off in the tech world. A generational changing of the guard from the FAANG to the APLUSS (Airbnb, Pinterest, Lyft, Uber, Slack, Stripe). A breaking of the liquidity dam that's kept capital, technology and talent locked up in a small nu...more

  • LP sneak peek: How to build a successful SaaS company (with Jake Saper, Partner at Emergence Capital)

    Mar 06 2019

    Hey Acquired listeners, our latest LP guest conversation was so good, we wanted to share some of it with everyone. We dove deep into the gritty details of SaaS investing and company building with the best in the business, Jake Saper from Emergence Capital. Emergence has been around since the beginning of SaaS and — uniquely for a venture firm — is entirely focused on early-stage investing within it. They were early investors in major successes like Salesforce, Veeva, SuccessFactors, Box and Yamm...more

  • Season 4, Episode 3: Instagram Revisited (with Emily White)

    Feb 26 2019

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   We enter the wayback machine and revisit the subject of Acquired’s second ever episode, Facebook’s bombshell 2012 acquisition of Instagram — this time with the help of then-Facebook executive Emily White, who moved over post-acquisition to become Instagram’s first business head. Together with Kevin and Mike, Emily helped build Instagram's business model, which today accounts for nearly 1/4 of all ...more

  • Spotify + Gimlet/Anchor Quick Take + Worldwide Meetup Details!

    Feb 19 2019

    Worldwide Meetup Details! Join us on February 21, 2019 at 530pm PT (830pm ET) at https://zoom.us/j/196930784 for our first worldwide meetup! Ben and David will be live on video hanging out and taking questions on both Slack and Zoom.   Spotify + Gimlet/Anchor Quick Take! We continue to experiment on Acquired, this time with a quick-take on Spotify’s bombshell dual-acquisition of Anchor and Gimlet Media. While we may give these deals the full Acquired treatment in the future, we wanted to share o...more

  • Season 4, Episode 2: ARM & SoftBank

    Feb 03 2019

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   We dive into the crazy, little-known story of how this small, former PC-maker in Cambridge, England dethroned Intel, saved Apple from bankruptcy, became the blueprint for the largest investment fund in history, and of course now powers just about every device you use today. From Issac Newton to the Apple Newton, the Vision Fund and beyond, ARM has had an impact on the technology industry that cann...more

  • Season 4, Episode 1: ESPN

    Jan 21 2019

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! >https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Booyah! Acquired, the worldwide leader in acquisitions and IPOs, kicks off Season 4 with a classic: ESPN. How did a failed former TV weatherman end up building the world’s most valuable media company on top of a dump (quite literally) in Bristol, Connecticut? We follow the incredible entrepreneurial journey from Getty Oil diversification strategy to Berkshire Hathaway home run to Disney crown jewel...more

  • Season 4 Trailer (and 2019 predictions!)

    Jan 14 2019

    Get ready for Acquired Season 4: the Attack of the IPOs! We'll be live on the scene this season as some of the tech world's biggest unicorns make their long-awaited public debuts (or at least we all hope). We get in the spirit for the coming season, and share our 2019 predictions in an excerpt from our last Limited Partner episode of 2018. Happy New Year to all!  ----------------- Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)

  • Season 3, Episode 10: Tencent

    Dec 17 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   We close out Season 3 and our China mini-series with a monster episode on Tencent, the Shenzhen-based social networking and entertainment powerhouse. We dive deep into the story of Pony Ma and his cofounders’ incredible journey from making software for pagers(!) to QQ, WeChat, League of Legends, Fortnite, Snapchat and even Tesla. This is one finale you don’t want to miss!   Carve Outs: Ben: Presi...more

  • LP Show Preview: Product-Market Fit

    Dec 10 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! (works best on mobile) https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ We often get asked, “what type of content is on the Limited Partner Bonus Shows?” Well, we figure an episode is worth a thousand words (er, something like that), so we’re releasing one of our LP bonus shows in the main feed. On this episode, we dive into the most elusive aspect of early-stage investing and company building: finding product-market fit. We’ll be back next week with our regularly sched...more

  • Season 3, Episode 9: Netflix (Part 2)

    Nov 25 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/(works best on mobile)   We complete our two-part Netflix special with the company’s bold transition to streaming, including of course the most (in)famous spin-out in business history. Rising from the ashes of Qwikster, we chronicle Netflix’s rebirth as a media company and long journey back to the top of the FAANG mountaintop!   Links: Netflix’s Qwikster apology video: https://youtu.be/c8Tn8n5CIPk SNL parody of the apolog...more

  • Season 3, Episode 8: Netflix (Part 1)

    Nov 12 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Parter program! (works best on mobile)   In a world ravaged by late fees and lack of rewinding, one man two men from a sleepy California beach town make a stand against tyranny, daringly dethrone an evil empire and… oh who are we kidding, they just copied Amazon’s business plan for books and applied it to movie rentals. But as always there is much more to the story than that! We dive into the fascinating, true, and oft-untold history of Netflix in our first two-part spe...more

  • Acquied Season 3 Episode 7: Venmo (live with Andrew Kortina)

    Oct 29 2018

    Our latest experiment! Become an Acquired Limited Partner and get access to LP-only bonus content: http://kimberlite.fm/acquired ———— Ben & David are joined by special guest and Venmo cofounder Andrew Kortina for our first-ever SF live show! In front of a packed house we chronicle the journey of how two freshman-year roommates from Penn turned a healthy obsession with Craigslist and a fake podcast into an app that facilitated $17B of payments last quarter alone, producing not one but two landmar...more

  • SF Live Show Announcement: Venmo!

    Oct 08 2018

    Join Ben and David for Acquired's first-ever SF live show! We'll be covering Venmo's acquisition by Braintree (and then PayPal), with special guest Andrew Kortina, co-founder of Venmo. We can’t wait to see many of you there! Register: http://acquired.fm/liveshow When: Wednesday October 24, 2018  6:00 PM – 9:00 PM PDT Where: SVB @ WeWork Golden Gate 25 Taylor Street San Francisco, CA 94102

  • Season 3, Episode 6: Behance (with Scott Belsky)

    Oct 02 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David are joined by Adobe’s Chief Product Officer, Behance founder, Benchmark partner, author, and product luminary, Scott Belsky, to tell the story of Adobe Systems’ 2012 acquisition of Behance. We dive into the role it played in of one of the greatest (and least well-known) pivots of all time: Adobe’s transition from packaged software to services, which over the past 6 years has generated ...more

  • Season 3, Episode 5: Alibaba

    Sep 24 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) We continue our China Tech series with perhaps the most incredible entrepreneurial journey in history: Alibaba and its indefatigable founder, Jack Ma. How did an unknown 30 year-old English teacher from a second tier Chinese city build the world’s 7th largest company by market cap (and the largest in China) in just 20 short years? This is one story you don’t want to miss.   Links: Alibaba: The Hou...more

  • Season 3, Episode 4: Recode (with Kara Swisher)

    Sep 11 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) In this special episode Ben & David head to Recode’s SF office and sit down in the red chair with the one & only Kara Swisher! Kara tells the story of Recode, from the beginnings of her partnership with Walt Mossberg in the late 90’s at WSJ to the launch of the D Conference and the All Things D blog, to starting Recode and ultimately being acquired by Vox Media in 2015. Kara is someone we’ve long lo...more

  • Season 3, Episode 3: The Sonos IPO

    Aug 20 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David are (almost) live on the scene covering the plucky Southern California “camera company”… uh wait, wrong episode… we mean *speaker* company’s IPO! Continuing the long Acquired tradition of analyzing companies at the intersection of music, tech and business, we discuss the past, present and future of Sonos in world where speakers actually now… speak!  Links: Sonos own corporate history ...more

  • Season 3, Episode 2: The Xiaomi IPO

    Aug 06 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired kicks off our China tech mini-series by teaming up with the best in the business: Hans and Zara from GGV’s 996 Podcast! Together we cover the largest technology IPO in the world since fellow China tech giant Alibaba in 2014: Xiaomi, where Hans has been an investor and board member from the very beginning. This episode is chock full of history and insight on both Xiaomi and what’s happening ...more

  • Season 3, Episode 1: Tesla

    Jul 17 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired kicks off Season 3 with a gangbuster two-hour extravaganza on America’s most successful automotive startup since The Ford Motor Company: Tesla. We cover everything, from founding to its 2010 IPO to all that’s happened since, including the question on the minds of superhero fans everywhere: who came first, Elon Musk or Tony Stark? (Spoiler: Elon)   Carve Outs: Ben: The Dissect podcast David...more

  • Season 3 Trailer

    Jul 09 2018

  • Season 2, Episode 10: The Rover-DogVacay Merger (with Rover CEO Aaron Easterly)

    Jun 18 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Please click here to take the 2018 Acquired Survey. It takes 5-10 minutes, helps us immensely, and you may win a pair of AirPods or equivalent Android-friendly listening accessory (woo!) Acquired wraps up Season 2 with our first “elusive” private-private merger: Rover.com and its 2017 combination with rival pet care marketplace DogVacay. We’re joined by Rover CEO Aaron Easterly to dive into the full...more

  • Season 2, Episode 9: GitHub

    Jun 06 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) We’re live on the scene the day following the biggest announcement in the open source software world since well, open source software: Microsoft acquiring GitHub for $7.5B in stock. How did we get here? What does it mean for software developers going forward? And most importantly, why is there a creepy half-cat / half-octopus plastered all over everything? As always, Acquired has the answers.  Carve...more

  • Season 2, Episode 8: T-Mobile / Sprint

    May 21 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) If you thought the telecom business was boring, think again! Acquired brings you an episode packed with more drama than an entire season of Game of Thrones. Starting with a death in the family, we follow a tale of fortunes lost and rebuilt, bitter battles between rivals who once worked for each other, and at the center of it all, a lesson in the power of stable cashflow businesses. This is one call ...more

  • Season 2, Episode 7: PowerPoint

    May 04 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired returns with a classic, delving into Microsoft’s first acquisition ever: Forethought Inc, the makers of PowerPoint. Hate it or love it, you can’t deny the combined companies’ impact: by the early 90’s PowerPoint had transformed the way businesses, educators and governments communicate, ensuring job security for pointy-haired Dilbert bosses everywhere.   Links: Robert Gaskins’ definitive h...more

  • Season 2, Episode 6: Spotify’s Direct Listing

    Apr 06 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired wraps up a big few weeks of coverage with not an IPO or an M&A or a fundraising round, but what’s still the largest tech exit in recent memory: Spotify’s $30B direct public listing. We dive into what it all means and how we got here: from Napster to iTunes to Facebook (and even some Justin Timberlake thrown in for good measure). Acquired FM is on the scene and spinning all the hits from thi...more

  • Season 2, Episode 5: The Dropbox IPO

    Mar 26 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired is live on the scene following Dropbox’s public market debut. From playing a central role in the early days of Y Combinator, to having Steve Jobs famously label the company a “feature not a product”, to pivoting from consumers to enterprise to developers and back again, the silicon valley history runs deep with this one. What twists and turns lie ahead for Dropbox as a public company? We sp...more

  • Season 2, Episode 4: SoftBank, Fortress and the Vision Fund

    Mar 23 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired dives into the topic on the minds and lips of just about every VC and founder these days: SoftBank’s $93B+ Vision Fund, and its seemingly-overnight rewriting of the rules of venture capital and startup fundraising. Where did this new 800lbs gorilla come from, what are its goals, and what does it mean for the future of silicon valley and the global tech ecosystem? The answer, it turns out, s...more

  • Season 2, Episode 3: Nest

    Feb 20 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired brings it all back home—to the smart home that is—with Google’s 2014 acquisition of Nest for $3.2B. From Nest cofounder Tony Fadell’s first job at General Magic (alongside future Android founder Andy Rubin) to his days as “father of the iPod” under Steve Jobs at Apple, the Silicon Valley history runs deep with this one. But did that make the acquisition a good move for Google in the coming ...more

  • Season 2, Episode 2: Raising a Seed Round with Against Gravity CEO Nick Fajt

    Feb 07 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) We launch mini-series on Acquired with a subject near & dear to our heroes’ hearts: startup fundraising! This has been one of our most-requested new topics, and we’re excited to kick things off with makers of the popular Rec Room social VR app, Against Gravity, which raised one of Seattle’s hottest venture rounds in recent history: a $4m seed led by Sequoia Capital in 2016. CEO Nick Fajt joins to te...more

  • Season 2, Episode 1: Zappos (with Alfred Lin)

    Jan 23 2018

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Former Zappos Chairman & COO (and current Partner at Sequoia Capital) Alfred Lin joins our heroes to kick off Season 2 with a classic: Amazon’s 2009 acquisition of the internet’s quirkiest online retailer for $1.2B in stock. How did three Harvard undergrads go from delivering pizza to their dorm to delivering happiness to the world — and become in the process one of the few companies ever to compete...more

  • Announcement: San Francisco Happy Hour

    Jan 08 2018

    Join us on Tuesday, January 16th 2018 at 5:30 in San Francisco for the Acquired Listener Happy Hour!

  • Episode 51: 2017 Holiday Special

    Dec 18 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired cozies up to the fire and looks back on the year in tech. How wildly off were we on last year’s predictions? What does the next year have in store? Most importantly, what price will Bitcoin be trading at in December 2018??? Pour yourself a glass of your favorite holiday beverage and kick back with us.   SF Acquired Meetup! Mark your calendars: we’ll be hosting an Acquired Meetup in SF the ...more

  • Episode 50: Apple - Beats

    Dec 11 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Acquired crosses the half-century mark with an instant classic: Apple’s 2014 purchase of Beats, its largest acquisition ever. If you knew Beats as just another headphone company, think again—the history on this one will keep your heads ringin’. SF Acquired Meetup! * Mark your calendars: we’ll be hosting an Acquired Meetup in SF the evening of January 18, 2018. More details to come soon. Carve Outs: ...more

  • Episode 49: The Stitch Fix IPO

    Dec 04 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David dive into the most talked-about tech IPO of 4Q 2017: Stitch Fix. After downsizing the offering and pricing below the range, does this signal a warning that public markets won’t value high-flying silicon valley “disruptors” as high as VCs hope? Or is this a textbook example of a great return for a disciplined management team and well-run company? Most importantly, what happens next? Tun...more

  • Episode 48: Qualcomm - Broadcom

    Nov 20 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben & David cover the proposed largest tech M&A deal of all time, and in the process dive into the evolving dynamics of the industry that started everything in Silicon Valley—silicon. Just when VCs thought innovation was dead in semiconductors, a new wave of startups and large companies are redrawing the lines of competition in an industry dominated for a half-century by the “Wintel” duopoly of Inte...more

  • Episode 47: The Atlassian IPO

    Nov 07 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben & David venture to the land down under (and reunite in-person!) to tell the story of the granddaddy of all bootstrapped tech success stories, collaboration software company Atlassian. How did two plucky college grads from Sydney, Australia go from just trying to escape working for the man to becoming two of the top 10 wealthiest people in the entire country, all without raising a dollar of ventu...more

  • Episode 46: Blue Bottle Coffee

    Oct 08 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Today our heroes cover a deal that might have more impact on life in Silicon Valley than AI, wearables and AR/VR combined… Nestle’s acquisition of Blue Bottle Coffee. Will hipster entrepreneurs and the VCs who love/need them continue to line up around the block for their minimalist coffee experience of choice, now that it’s owned by the Nesquik Bunny? Is this the beginning of Blue Bottle pod machine...more

  • Episode 45: HTC, Google and the Future of Mobile

    Sep 21 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Acquired is back and live on the scene! After months of speculation, Google announces today their acquisition (err, "Cooperation Agreement”) of a large portion of HTC’s hardware division. What does this mean for the future of mobile? Can Google transform itself into a vertically integrated device company and compete directly with Apple? Most importantly, when will we see more Beats Android handse...more

  • Episode 44: AOL - Time Warner (with the Internet History Podcast)

    Sep 18 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   On this extra-long episode of Acquired, Brian McCullough from the Internet History Podcast returns to discuss perhaps the most (in)famous merger of all time: AOL - Time Warner. Who doesn’t remember the soothing sounds of 56k modems and the timeless phrase, “You’ve Got Mail”? Join us all as we unpack how one of the biggest ISP’s of the 90’s tried to take over the world… and fell far short.   Topics...more

  • Episode 43: The Square IPO

    Aug 16 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Unicorns and ratchets and lawsuits, oh my! Our heroes dive into the history of Jack Dorsey’s famous “other” company, Square. Was the Square IPO a canary in the coal mine signaling doom & gloom for the so-called unicorn companies of the early 2010’s, or a mispriced and misunderstood diamond in the rough? Acquired weighs in.   Topics Covered Include: Square’s deep origins in the early 90’s in St. Lou...more

  • Episode 42: Opsware (with special guest Michel Feaster)

    Aug 05 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Acquired dives into the legendary acquisition of Ben Horowitz & Marc Andreessen’s “second act” software company Opsware, from a perspective never before heard—HP’s side of the story! Our heroes are joined by Michel Feaster, who led both the acquisition for HP and then the Opsware product as part of the integrated company afterward under Ben Horowitz. Today the tables have turned: Michel is the Co-...more

  • Episode 41: Booking.com with Jetsetter & Room 77 CEO Drew Patterson

    Jul 26 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Acquired trains its lens on the “second or third best acquisition of all-time”, Priceline’s 2005 purchase of Booking.com. Our heroes are joined by friend-of-the-show and former Jetsetter & Room 77 CEO Drew Patterson to help understand how this little-known startup from The Netherlands grew into the largest travel company in the world, with nearly $8B in annual revenue. Was this deal even better th...more

  • Episode 40: Activision Blizzard

    Jul 13 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David cover the creation of the gaming world’s equivalent of the 70’s rock supergroup: the 2008 merger of Blizzard and Activision. We tell the story from the Blizzard perspective, tracing the history of one of the most innovative companies in the business from humble beginnings at the hands of UCLA undergrads, to surviving multiple acquisition rollups (including at one point being owned by t...more

  • Acquired Episode 39: Whole Foods Market

    Jun 21 2017

    Ben and David are once again live on the scene, this time covering the biggest disruption in grocery since… well, sliced bread: Amazon’s $13.7B purchase of Whole Foods Market. We place this deal in context by diving deep into the long, intertwining history of grocery, tech and Amazon, from the infamous dotcom flameout Webvan (domain name now owned by Amazon) to its much more successful progeny Kiva Systems (acquired by Amazon in 2012) to current Silicon Valley unicorn Instacart (founded by forme...more

  • "About Acquired" on the Anchor Podcast of the Day

    Jun 11 2017

    Ben and David are guests on Anchor's Podcast of the Day, discussing Acquired's origin story, show structure, and how the show gets made. If you're new to the show and looking for a primer, this is a great place to jump in!

  • Acquired Episode 38: SoundJam (iTunes)

    May 31 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)     Ben & David revisit the birth of the digital music revolution and Steve Jobs' "digital hub" strategy, with Apple's 2000 acquisition of the Mac music player SoundJam MP, which would go on to become iTunes. We relive the 90's with brushed metal interfaces, music visualizers and of course, software sold in (physical) boxes.     Thanks to this episode's sponsor, Silicon Valley Bank. You can learn mo...more

  • Episode 37: BAMTech, Disney and "the Biggest Media Company You've Never Heard Of”

    May 10 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David continue Acquired’s “tech and sports” mini-series with Disney’s 2016 acquisition of a minority stake (with the right to purchase a majority stake at a later date) in BAMTech, the internet streaming company originally founded as part of Major League Baseball in the early 2000’s. However the importance of this story goes deeper than just sports, with major ramifications for nearly ever...more

  • Episode 36: The LA Clippers

    Apr 24 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   In honor of start of NBA playoffs, Ben & David venture off the beaten path to explore one of Steve Ballmer’s most famous acquisitions, his 2014 purchase of the Los Angeles Clippers NBA franchise. Was this landmark purchase a steal or a turnover for the former Microsoft CEO? We speculate wildly!   Topics covered include: The Clippers’ founding in 1970 as the NBA expansion team the Buffalo Braves E...more

  • Episode 35: Oculus

    Apr 11 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David transcend the barriers of “real” reality, and dive into Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg’s geek-eutpoia vision of the future of gaming, social, and maybe even the entire internet: strapping goofy-looking goggles to your face. Is VR for real this time or are we living through another Virtual Boy moment? Tune in to find out!   Topics covered include: Oculus’s origins in 2010 as a twinkle in...more

  • Episode 34: The Starbucks IPO with Dan Levitan

    Apr 03 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben & David "pour over" the 1992 IPO of the legendary Seattle coffee company with the help of Dan Levitan, who served as lead investment banker on the IPO and who would later co-found the venture capital firm Maveron with Starbucks’ CEO Howard Schultz.  Topics covered include: The original Starbucks’ founding as a coffee bean roaster, started by three disciples of the legendary coffee roaster Alfre...more

  • Episode 33: Overture (with the Internet History Podcast!)

    Mar 13 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Episode 33: Overture (with the Internet History Podcast!)    Ben & David dive deep into the early days of internet search, with the help of the best in the internet history business: Brian McCullough from the Internet History Podcast! We are huge fans of IHP at Acquired, so this was a real treat to collaborate with Brian and the great work he does over there. In this episode we cover the story of ...more

  • Episode 32: The Snap Inc. IPO

    Mar 04 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Snap! Acquired is live on the scene reporting from the "Super Bowl" of 2017 tech events: Snap Inc's hugely anticipated (and just plain huge) IPO. What does the future hold for this plucky “camera company”? Will Snap's IPO endure as tech's most important picture-frame since the 2012 debut of Facebook, or is it destined to fade as just another snapshot? We debate!    Topics covered include: Refere...more

  • Episode 31: The Uber - Didi Chuxing Merger with Brad Stone, author of The Upstarts & The Everything Store

    Mar 01 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Topics covered include: The global surge in 2012 of entrepreneurs starting ridesharing companies, nowhere moreso than China  Didi CEO Cheng Wei and investor Wang Gang’s backgrounds at Alibaba, first entrepreneurial effort in Momo, and Momo’s pivot to Didi Dache The culling of the ridesharing herd in China down to Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache through brutal competition and involvement of the “big t...more

  • Episode 30: P.A. Semi + AuthenTec

    Jan 24 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Topics covered include: P.A. Semi’s original moniker ("Palo Alto Semiconductor”) and its celebrity founder (in the semiconductor world) Dan Dobberpuhl History of the back and forth tradeoffs between Intel’s powerful x86 chips and low power alternatives like ARM processors  Dobberpuhl’s technology breakthroughs throughout his career that enabled true low-power + high-performance chips The initial ...more

  • Episode 29: Special—2016 Review and 2017 Predictions

    Jan 11 2017

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David wrap up 2016 with a review of the top tech themes we discussed on the show this year, and look forward to which themes we think will be relevant in the coming year. Can our hosts predict the future? Tune-in in 2018 to find out!    Note: we apologize for the less-than-amazing audio quality on this one. We’re still working on tuning our remote recording setup!   Topics covered include: ...more

  • Episode 28: The Amazon IPO with original Amazon Board Member Tom Alberg

    Dec 31 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David welcome very special guest Tom Alberg, board member and first lead investor in Amazon.com, to cover the IPO of "earth’s most customer-centric company". From longterm thinking to flywheels to riding big waves, this episode is chock full of lessons and stories from the journey of building one of tech’s most iconic franchises. We hope you enjoy listening as much as we did recording it!   ...more

  • Episode 27: Special—A Conversation with Microsoft's Head of Strategic Investments Brian Schultz

    Dec 16 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Topics covered include: Brian’s history working across “both sides of the aisle” as both a startup founder and corporate development leader at a big company, how perspective from each informs the other, and the importance of learning “customer empathy”  How Microsoft approaches M&A from an organizational perspective, and the importance of fit with the company’s product roadmap  How Brian approac...more

  • Episode 26: Marvel

    Dec 05 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Topics covered include: Marvel’s corporate origins as "Timely Publications”, created in 1939 by pulp magazine publisher Martin Goodman in NYC, with the publication of Marvel Comics #1 Creation of enduring characters such as Captain America, the Fantastic 4, Spider Man, The X-Men, Iron Man, Thor, The Hulk and more Adoption in 1961 of the "Marvel Comics” brand, and writer-editor Stan Lee’s transit...more

  • Episode 25: The Facebook IPO

    Nov 11 2016

    Hey Acquired listeners. A note about this show: we recorded this episode the night before the 2016 Election Day in the US. At the time, the biggest change we saw coming was adding a new type of content to Acquired in analyzing IPO’s, which we introduce in this episode. Two days later, we woke up to a very different world than the one we were expecting. Reflecting on what’s happened, and the past few months of our show, we wanted to say two things: First, we want to apologize for our cavalier att...more

  • Episode 24: Skype

    Nov 02 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   An acquisition so wild and crazy, they had to do it again. And again. Ben & David cover tech’s perhaps most-traded asset, Skype (which also happens to be a fantastic business). How do we even know which deal to grade? Tune in to find out…    Topics covered include: Community spotlight: Slack community member Swyx’s financial data research startup Sentieo!  Skype founders Niklas Zennström and Ja...more

  • Episode 23: NeXT (Live show at the GeekWire Summit)

    Oct 23 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David broadcast live from the 2016 GeekWire Summit covering one of the all-time greats, Apple’s 1996 acquisition of NeXT. This episode has it all: the Steve Jobs hero story, Apple, I.M. Pei, Ross Perot, Aaron Sorkin, Nobel Laureates and… Gil Amelio? Does NeXT rank atop the best acquisitions ever? Our own heroes cast their votes.    Topics covered include: 1980’s era Apple, entering the ...more

  • Episode 22: Zillow + Trulia (with Zillow Group CFO Kathleen Philips)

    Oct 14 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   CFO of Zillow Group Kathleen Philips joins Ben and David to cover the show’s first true “merger” versus “acquisition" (only took 22 episodes!), Zillow’s 2015 combination with Trulia to form Zillow Group.    Note: our audio glitches unfortunately continued on this episode, and quality is rough. We recommend listening on speakers vs headphones if you’re able. We apologize and will be back to normal ...more

  • Episode 21: Inside the M&A Press with Bloomberg's Alex Sherman

    Sep 27 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David go inside the M&A press with Bloomberg’s technology M&A reporter and host of the Deal of the Week Podcast, Alex Sherman. If you’ve ever wondered how stories about big deals get broken or what “according to people familiar with the matter” really means, tune in for the behind-the-scenes scoop!    Note: A technical glitch with our recording setup created occasional short silences betwe...more

  • Episode 20: Android

    Sep 16 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David examine Google’s 2005 purchase of Android for a rumored $50M, undeniably one of the best technology acquisitions of all time. But will it top the list of these tough graders? Tune in to find out.   Topics covered include: Welcome new listeners! We quickly review the show format for newbies.  Community spotlight: Patagonia on a Budget from community member Matt Morgante (@mattm on Sl...more

  • Episode 19: Jet

    Aug 29 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David break down Jet.com’s meteoric rise, culminating in Walmart’s blockbuster $3B+ acquisition of the company just two years after its founding. Will we look back on this deal as an ‘Instagram-like’ bargain or a ‘Pets.com'-sized blunder? And most importantly, can *anyone* compete with Amazon going forward? We speculate wildly.   Topics covered include: Community spotlight: Nowdue, a super ...more

  • Episode 18: Special—An Acquirer’s View into M&A with Taylor Barada, head of Corp Dev at Adobe

    Aug 22 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben & David are joined by special guest Taylor Barada, VP and Head of Corporate Development & Strategic Partnerships at Adobe, to discuss how large tech acquirers approach buying companies. This episode is full of great insights for startups & entrepreneurs who might find themselves navigating the M&A process, as well as anyone curious about the craft of dealmaking and the strategic approach of la...more

  • Acquired Episode 17: Waze

    Aug 03 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Topics covered include: Community Showcase: the Nexcast podcasting platform from listener Brian Sanders, along with their podcast chronicling the team’s journey building the company  Waze’s origin in cofounder & CTO Ehud Shabtai’s desire to hack his portable GPS navigation unit Waze CEO Noam Bardin’s retrospective blog post on the Waze journey  Waze’s Palo Alto office and the bizarre Silicon Va...more

  • Acquired Episode 16: Midroll + Stitcher (acquired by Scripps)

    Jul 12 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   The meta show: Ben and David turn their gaze inward and examine the podcasting industry through E. W. Scripps’ recent acquisitions of the Midroll podcast advertising network and Stitcher podcast client. Featuring discussion of our own product process and metrics at Acquired.    Announcements: We’re pivoting! (not really) Our new show description: A Podcast About Technology Acquisitions That A...more

  • Acquired Episode 15: ExactTarget (acquired by Salesforce) with Scott Dorsey

    Jul 05 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David return to make their first foray into enterprise software, covering Salesforce’s $2.5B acquisition of ExactTarget in 2013 with the help of special guest and ExactTarget cofounder & CEO, Scott Dorsey.    Technical note: due to an issue we didn’t catch during recording, audio quality is significantly lower than usual for this episode (especially David’s voice). We apologize but hope y...more

  • Episode 14: LinkedIn

    Jun 16 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David cover the 3-day-old acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft for $26.2 billion. They cover LinkedIn’s founding story by Reid Hoffman, break down their core businesses, analyze recent stock behavior, and speculate on the future of the company inside Microsoft. The big question - were they worth the price tag? Items Mentioned On The Show: Adweek: Snapchat Launches a Colossal Expansion of I...more

  • Episode 13: Push Pop Press (Facebook Instant Articles) with Todd Bishop

    Jun 06 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David are joined by Todd Bishop, technology reporter and co-founder of GeekWire, to discuss Facebook's 2011 acquisition of Push Pop Press. Highlights include: The founding story of Push Pop Press by Kimon Tsinteris and Mike Matas. The evolution of Facebook Creative Labs, Facebook Paper, and eventually, Facebook Instant Articles. Facebook's role in the changing media landscape today. GeekWir...more

  • Episode 12: Snapchat

    May 23 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David tackle their first failed acquisition: Facebook's 2013 offer to buy Snapchat. They cover the fascinating story of Snapchat's creation and growth, their blossoming business model, how it would be different inside of Facebook, and what the future holds. Items mentioned in the show: The Inside Story Of Snapchat: The World's Hottest App Or A $3 Billion Disappearing Act? Inside Evan Spiege...more

  • Episode 11: PayPal

    May 09 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David return to technology acquisitions by examining a classic: eBay's 2002 purchase of PayPal.  Items mentioned in the show:  How the 'PayPal Mafia' redefined success in Silicon Valley  - Tech Republic Instagram Will Be a $3 Billion Business This Year: Analyst President Obama and Bill Simmons: The GQ Interview "The Carve Out": Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder -  The Bill Sim...more

  • Acquired Episode 10: Virgin America

    Apr 27 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) Ben and David deviate entirely from the stated purpose of the show, tackling this non-technology acquisition that is so recent, we have no idea if it went well yet. But, the April 2016 acquisition of Virgin America by Alaska Airlines was so fascinating, we had to do it!    Items mentioned in the show:  Louis C.K. - Everything is Amazing and Nobody is Happy   Alaska Acquires Virgin America Investor ...more

  • Episode 9: Writely (Google Docs)

    Mar 29 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David continue the cloud productivity saga with Google Docs. They examine the suite of acquisitions made by Google with a focus on Writely in 2006. They tackle: The nuts and bolts of the Upstartle (company behind Writely) acquisition, founded by Sam Schillace, Steve Newman and Claudia Carpenter. SaaS offerings in cloud productivity today. Was this a good idea for Google? Google's future b...more

  • Episode 8: Acompli, Sunrise, and Wunderlist (w/ Kurt DelBene)

    Feb 29 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David have special guest Kurt DelBene on to discuss Microsoft's acquisition of Acompli, Sunrise, and Wunderlist. Kurt is the EVP of Corporate Strategy and Planning at Microsoft, and joins to discuss Microsoft’s cloud-first, mobile-first strategy, and the importance of being cross-platform in the modern era. They cover: How the app of Outlook Mobile on iPhone and Android came to be. How to...more

  • Episode 7: YouTube

    Feb 03 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David test the widely-held belief that YouTube was one of the most successful tech acquisitions of all time. In today's world of next-generation video platforms, mobile video, streaming, and chord-cutting, was it actually a great purchase by Google? As discussed in the show, here is Sequoia's original YouTube investment memo - a rarely-shared gold mine for anyone interested in startup inve...more

  • Episode 6: Lucasfilm

    Jan 19 2016

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Riding closely on the tails of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Ben and David cover Disney's 2012 acquisition of Lucasfilm. In the episode, they mention Walt Disney's original flywheel diagram, seen below.

  • Episode 5: Siri

    Dec 14 2015

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile) In the last episode of 2015, Ben and David discuss Apple's acquisition of Siri. Notable topics include: The founding of Siri by Dag Kittlau, Adam Cheyer, and Chris Brigham. Scott Forstall on the Apple side, and the end of his time at the company. The other Apple acquisitions around Siri, including Topsy, Novauris Technologies, OttoCat. Cue, Spotsetter, VocalIQ, and Perceptio. The team Apple built a...more

  • Episode 4: Bungie (with Xbox Co-Founder Ed Fries)

    Nov 30 2015

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David are joined by Former Microsoft VP and Co-Founder of Xbox, Ed Fries, to discuss the Bungie acquisition and the development of Halo. Highlights include: Ed’s call with Steve Jobs after the acquisition, and sharing the stage with Steve and Bungie Co-Founder Alex Seropian at the Macworld Keynote. Bungie today, and the unlikely path to get there led by Harold Ryan. How to find something ...more

  • Episode 3: Twitch

    Nov 16 2015

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David discuss Amazon's acquisition of Twitch in 2014. Unlike previous episodes, this recent acquisition still has a lot of open questions, and Amazon hasn't publicly reported growth of Twitch since the purchase. Ben and David talk about Justin Kan's original product with Justin.tv, and the transformation into the Twitch that Emmett Shear is running today.

  • Episode 2: Instagram

    Nov 01 2015

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David discuss Facebook's acquisition of Instagram in 2012. Was it a success? If so, what are the criteria that made it work? What lessons can be learned for other acquisitions in the future?  

  • Episode 1: Pixar

    Oct 15 2015

    Join the Acquired Limited Partner program! https://kimberlite.fm/acquired/ (works best on mobile)   Ben and David discuss Disney's acquisition of Pixar in 2006. Was it a success? If so, what are the criteria that made it work? What lessons can be learned for other acquisitions in the future?