How I Built This

How I Built This

United States

How I Built This is a podcast about innovators, entrepreneurs, and idealists, and the stories behind the movements they built. Each episode is a narrative journey marked by triumphs, failures, serendipity and insight — told by the founders of some of the world's best known companies and brands. If you've ever built something from nothing, something you really care about — or even just dream about it — check out How I Built This hosted by Guy Raz @guyraz. Follow the show @HowIBuiltThis.

Episodes

Serial Entrepreneur: Mark Cuban  

Mark Cuban made millions off of tech startups, then billions off of stocks — and later went on to buy and revive the Dallas Mavericks. He has come to define the persona of the serial entrepreneur.

Angie's List: Angie Hicks  

In 1996, Angie Hicks spent hours reading contractor reviews to members over the phone. Today, the online review and referral service, Angie's List, is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Southwest Airlines: Herb Kelleher  

In 1968, competitors sued to keep Herb Kelleher's new airline grounded. After a 3-year court fight, the first plane took off from Dallas. Today Southwest Airlines operates nearly 4,000 flights a day.

Celebrity Chef: José Andrés  

As a kid, José Andrés tended fires for his father's backyard paella cookouts. Later, he trained with the best Spanish chefs, and began building a restaurant empire that would transform the way many Americans dine out.

Music Mogul: L.A. Reid  

L.A. Reid began his music career as a drummer. Then he co-founded LaFace Records, discovering dozens of future pop superstars. Reid is now one of the most influential executives in the music industry.

Samuel Adams: Jim Koch  

In 1984, Jim Koch felt suffocated by his cushy but boring corporate job. So he left, dusted off an old family beer recipe, started Sam Adams, and helped kickstart the craft beer movement in America.

Dermalogica: Jane Wurwand  

Jane Wurwand moved to Los Angeles with a suitcase and a beauty school diploma. She started what would become Dermalogica, an international beauty empire that set the standard for skin care.

Airbnb: Joe Gebbia  

A chance encounter with a stranger gave Joe Gebbia an idea to help pay his rent. That idea turned into Airbnb — a company that now has more rooms than the biggest hotel chain in the world.

VICE: Suroosh Alvi  

Suroosh Alvi was a recovering addict when he started a scrappy underground magazine in Montreal. It grew into VICE Media — a multi-billion dollar company that has shaken up the world of journalism.

Clif Bar: Gary Erickson  

Gary Erickson asked his mom, "Can you make a cookie without butter, sugar or oil?" The result was Clif Bar, an energy bar named after his dad — now one of the most popular energy bars in the U.S.

Radio One: Cathy Hughes  

As a kid, Cathy Hughes practiced her DJ routine while her siblings banged on the bathroom door. As an adult, she founded Radio One, the country's largest African-American owned broadcasting company.

Instagram: Kevin Systrom & Mike Krieger  

Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger launched their photo-sharing app with a server that crashed every other hour. Despite a chaotic start, Instagram became one of the most popular apps in the world.

Spanx: Sara Blakely  

At 27, Sara Blakely was selling fax machines and desperate to reinvent her life. So she came up with Spanx — hosiery that eliminates panty lines — and set to work building her business.

Coming Soon: How I Built This  

On September 12, NPR launches a new podcast, How I Built This, hosted by Guy Raz. The show features innovators, entrepreneurs, idealists, and the stories behind the movements they built.

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