The Acquired ( Podcast

A few months ago my friend introduced me to the Acquired Podcast. I listened to a few episodes and enjoyed it so much I downloaded their entire back catalogue to listen to on a 15-hour flight.

Acquired covers the history of various tech companies - from their founding up until an “exit” - usually getting acquired or going public.

One of the hosts is a developer and the other host is a venture capitalist.

If you want to expand your understanding of tech industry history, this is one of the best podcasts you can listen to.

Here’s a page where you can listen to their full archive of episodes (you can also subscribe in your podcast app):

Some episodes I’ve found particularly fun and interesting:

  • Netflix - this is a 2-parter that discusses Netlix’s transition from mailing DVDs to streaming video, to ultimately producing its own content - along with the many companies that have spun out of Netflix like Redbox and Roku.
  • GitHub - Inside the platform’s quirky origins
  • Tesla - In this episode, Elon Musk makes some really bold risks and somehow manages to survive
  • Tencent - The biggest tech company that you may not have heard of, which runs much of China’s social media and game industry
  • Softbank - How a Korean kid grows up in Japan, invests in Alibaba, and ultimately becomes the largest investment fund in history
  • Atlassian - and probably the most impressive overall - a tech company so well run that the founders still own ~70% of the company even after it has gone public.

Enjoy the podcast and leave a review below with your thoughts and favorite episodes.

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