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Business Wars


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Netflix vs. HBO. Nike vs. Adidas. Business is war. Sometimes the prize is your wallet, or your attention. Sometimes, it’s just the fun of beating the other guy. The outcome of these battles shapes what we buy and how we live. Business Wars gives you ...Show More

27:24 | Feb 6th, 2018

This is Episode 1 of an 8-part series on the brutal business battle between Netflix and Blockbuster, and later HBO. It all started around 1997, with a guy named Marc Randolph and his mathematician friend Reed Hastings. Randolph and Hastings knew the...Show More

27:01 | Jun 19th

In the 1930s and ’40s the market for electric guitars is growing, but it’s hindered by the instruments’ flawed designs. But a small group of mavericks is rethinking the guitar for the electronic age. One of them, guitarist Les Paul, tries unsuccessf...Show More
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22:03 | May 22nd

It’s spring 2019, and the Mouse House is determined to challenge Netflix for streaming supremacy. Disney CEO Bob Iger draws gasps at an industry event when he announces the new Disney Plus streaming service will cost just seven bucks a month. Then th...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

25:02 | Mar 4th

In the 70 and 80s, the founders of Death Row and Bad Boy are just coming of age. In the Los Angeles neighborhood of Compton, a young Dre is spinning records before he even learns to read. Dre desperately wants to be a hip-hop DJ, but Los Angeles bare...Show More

23:43 | Feb 6th

Description: The NFL has faced rival leagues in the past, and routinely squashed them without breaking so much as a sweat. The NFL’s powerful commissioner, Pete Rozelle, assumes the USFL will be no different. He sees the rival league as a joke. A bli...Show More

26:58 | Feb 4th

For years, David Dixon has been trying to convince the National Football League to launch an expansion team in New Orleans, but he always comes up empty-handed. Finally, after one too many letdowns, Dixon realizes his only hope for a hometown team is...Show More

25:08 | Jan 28th

Egg McMuffins, Croissan’wiches and coffee. Today’s fast food fight is all about breakfast time. Wall Street Journal reporter Julie Jargon joins to talk about where Burger King and McDonald’s are headed, the rise of eating at home, and how fast-casual...Show More

27:20 | Sep 18th

It’s 1995 and the Monday Night Wars are underway. WCW’s new show Monday Nitro is grappling with the WWF’s Monday Night Raw to win TV viewers’ attention. WCW isn’t pulling its punches either. Under the command of Eric Bischoff, WCW is dropping spoile...Show More

07:33 | Sep 17th

From Wondery and The Athletic, The Lead is the first daily sports podcast that will bring you one big story each day from The Athletic's all-star team of local and national sports reporters. Subscribe now to hear new episodes each weekday morning: ht...Show More

27:15 | Sep 16th

It’s 1994 and WCW is stepping up its game. To get the jump on WWF, Ted Turner is writing big checks to steal away the WWF’s biggest stars and sponsors. And as WCW’s star power increases, so does its popularity with wrestling fans. But the WWF is in ...Show More

28:15 | Sep 11th

It’s the dawn of the 1990s and Vince McMahon’s WWF is the king of wrestling. But trouble’s brewing: a steroids scandal is about to deal a body blow to the WWF and its family-friendly reputation. The scandal will leave WWF stuck in damage control mod...Show More

31:11 | Sep 9th

It’s the early 1980s and there’s peace in the wrestling business. For years regional wrestling companies have maintained order by sticking to their own slices of US and Canadian territory. But that’s all about to change. Vince McMahon has just taken...Show More

29:21 | Sep 4th

Harley Davidson built its brand on big, loud and heavy bikes. So why is the company staking its future on an electric motorcycle? It turns out Harley's main demographic, baby boomers, are aging out of the motorcycle scene and the company is looking f...Show More

26:56 | Sep 2nd

By the early 1980s, Harley-Davidson is fighting to survive. Japan has glutted the American market with bikes, creating a war Harley can’t fight alone. The company turns to the U.S. government. It’s something they tried in the ‘50s with no success, bu...Show More

06:36 | Aug 29th

If you’re a fan of all the pageantry and excitement that college football brings, then The Solid Verbal is the podcast for you. Join hosts Dan Rubenstein and Ty Hildenbrandt as they offer insights into each conference, game analysis, and plenty of co...Show More

26:45 | Aug 28th

It’s 1969, and the iconic film Easy Rider stars Peter Fonda, Jack Nicholson and—most prominently—Harley choppers. It boosts the brand’s cool cred even higher with the American counterculture, much to the chagrin of the aging, conservative company own...Show More

28:29 | Aug 26th

It’s 1963. After battling the wave of British bikes vying for the high-dollar U.S. motorcycle market, Harley-Davidson is slammed by a tsunami of machines from Japan. Kawasaki, Yamaha, Suzuki and—the biggest, most popular of them all—Honda.  It’s a n...Show More

21:42 | Aug 21st

By the late 1940s, World War II has ended, but Harley’s battle with a few disenfranchised veterans is just beginning. Bored and looking for kicks, these men are forming clubs based around a love of boozing, brawling and Harley Hogs. The motorcycle ri...Show More

24:38 | Aug 19th

It’s 1903, and Harley-Davidson is entering the spanking new motorcycle market. Of the hundreds of fledgling brands, the bike to beat is Indian, and Harley has the company in its crosshairs. But a decade later, Harley is on the defensive, scrambling t...Show More

10:12 | Aug 15th

Join Jordan Harbinger with Jason DeFillippo as they get deep into the untapped wisdom of the world's top performers -- from intelligence operatives to legendary musicians, iconoclastic writers to visionary changemakers. They deconstruct the playbooks...Show More

26:40 | Aug 14th

By the late 1940s, Harley-Davidson has become America’s leading motorcycle manufacturer. The family-owned Milwaukee brand has battled hundreds of companies since its first bike rolled out of a backyard shack in 1903. Now they’re facing the birth of t...Show More

33:39 | Aug 12th

A shakeup in the maple syrup industry. The slowest pizza delivery in the world. Pet food companies cashing in on your love for Fido. On our sister show Business Wars Daily, we bring you breaking news about the business rivalries you know and love — a...Show More

27:38 | Aug 7th

With all the hype around portable and smart speakers, it’s easy to forget that they didn’t always exist. In fact, it took one fateful meeting with Monster Cables and Interscope Records to really kick the industry off. In this one-episode Business Bat...Show More

08:35 | Aug 6th

How big is our galaxy? Why do certain movies make us cry? And what exactly is string theory? Join Sean Carroll's Mindscape to dive deep into the biggest ideas in science, philosophy, culture and much more. Start listening today at More

30:48 | Aug 5th

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! Or is it? While that phrase sounds scientifically and nutritionally sound, it’s origins can be traced back to cereal company marketing departments. We conclude our series on the cereal wars with Alex M...Show More

24:58 | Jul 31st

It’s the year 2000 and, for the first time in almost a century, Kellogg’s is no longer America's top cereal maker. Now a new CEO is in the driving seat, and he’s on a mission to win back the cereal crown from General Mills. But even as the two rival...Show More

27:08 | Jul 29th

It’s the 1980s and General Mills is making waves with a new cereal based on the world’s hottest video game: Pac-Man.  But Kellogg’s is hoping to cash in on a different trend: the growing clamour among adults for healthier breakfasts. So it’s plotti...Show More

15:41 | Jul 26th

Listen as real entrepreneurs pitch to real investors — for real money. To hear what happens after The Pitch and listen to more episodes, go to

27:09 | Jul 24th

It’s the late 1950s and General Mills is playing catch-up. While Kellogg’s and Post are thriving on the back of animated characters and sugary cereals, General Mills’ cereals are looking stale. So now the Cheerios maker is on a mission to create its ...Show More

26:39 | Jul 22nd

World War II is in the rearview mirror, and breakfast cereal is on the brink of a new calorific era. Post Cereals decides to break from its healthful past and start sugar coating its cereals. It’s a move that leaves Kellogg’s and General Mills in a q...Show More

27:04 | Jul 17th

It’s 1904 and Quaker Oats is about to make an, ahem, explosive entry into the cold cereal business. With the Kellogg brothers at risk of being left behind, Will Kellogg finally decides it’s time to stand up to his brother. He cuts ties and brings the...Show More

26:13 | Jul 15th

It’s the late 1800s and America is in the grip of a bellyache epidemic. But, thanks to a divine revelation, help is on the way in the form of Dr. John Harvey Kellogg and his sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan. In his quest to calm the nation’s bowe...Show More

28:26 | Jul 10th

Ian S. Port, author of The Birth of Loud: Leo Fender, Les Paul, and the Guitar-Pioneering Rivalry That Shaped Rock 'n' Roll joins us to talk about the future of the electric guitar as music creation becomes increasingly digital.

26:08 | Jul 8th

In the '90s and 2000s, new ownership has revitalized both Fender and Gibson and rekindled their rivalry. Through acquisitions, artist endorsements and their rapidly expanding custom shops, both brands are in a heated battle to win the hearts and mind...Show More

26:26 | Jul 3rd

It's the early 1980s, and for the first time in 30 years, the U.S. guitar market has gone cold. Bands are switching to synthesizers and kids are ditching their garage bands for computers and video games. A group of employees has bought the Fender br...Show More

23:22 | Jul 1st

In the 1960s, rock'n roll's popularity continues to grow. But one of the genre's most popular guitars, the Les Paul, is no longer being made. Now the guitar's namesake must convince an out-of-touch Gibson to put the favorite guitar of Eric Clapton an...Show More

27:38 | Jun 26th

Gibson's Les Paul sets a new standard for the solid-body electric guitar, and rival guitar maker Fender needs to respond. The company does so in 1954 with a sleek, futuristic guitar unlike anything else on the market: the Stratocaster. It's a hit. W...Show More

29:45 | Jun 24th

It's 1950, and Fender's first solid-body guitar, the Esquire, is the laughingstock of the music industry. To guitar makers used to elegantly made hollow-body guitars, Fender's thin, simple plank of solid wood is a joke. But its bright, powerful sound...Show More

11:15 | Jun 18th

1865 starts with the moment Lincoln got shot and follows the journey of the Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton. Stanton continues to push through Lincoln’s progressive agenda while dealing with the nuances around the assassination. But the moral gravity...Show More

27:49 | Jun 17th

It’s a new century and the beer industry is changing fast. Beyond America, new brewery empires are forming and they want to buy their way into the lucrative U.S. market. And Miller is the first to fall, bought out by a South African company that wan...Show More

25:49 | Jun 12th

It’s the 1980s and Miller’s glory days are over. Drinkers are deserting High Life and Anheuser-Busch is about to launch a $50 million attack on Miller Lite. With the pressure mounting, Miller hunts for a way to revive its momentum. It’s a search tha...Show More

25:59 | Jun 10th

It’s the late 1970s and Miller is hurtling towards the top of the brewing industry on the back of High Life and Lite. Anheuser-Busch’s new leader August Busch III knows he must act fast to stop the threat. But before he can do that there’s internal ...Show More

23:14 | Jun 5th

Come the early 1970s, Miller has a new owner: tobacco giant Philip Morris. Armed with the Marlboro maker’s millions and marketing skills, Miller is about to shake up the beer business with a campaign targeting blue-collar workers thirsty for a cold p...Show More

26:26 | Jun 3rd

By 1933 Prohibition is over, and that means the race is on to dominate a beer market that’s been reset. Under the leadership of Anheuser-Busch heir Gussie Busch, the company is out to reclaim the beer throne. But there’s a challenger for the crown — ...Show More

06:33 | May 30th

Heroes, villains, action... all set in a galaxy far, far away. Join Inside Star Wars and go behind the camera and find out how one of the most iconic series in film history came to be. Listen now at:

27:42 | May 29th

It’s 1893 and Chicago is about to host The World’s Columbian Exposition. It’s going to be the biggest show the world’s ever seen, and that means it’s time for Adolphus Busch to shine. He’s the owner of Budweiser brewery Anheuser-Busch and the most f...Show More

34:15 | May 27th

On today's special interview episode, renowned media futurist Rich Greenfield returns to fill us in on the latest developments in the streaming wars and how these changes might impact viewers in the coming years. Greenfield is a media and tech analys...Show More

26:32 | May 20th

Netflix goes from being a streaming company to a movement in which consumers all over the world decide what to watch, and when and how they watch. The future that Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph envisioned two decades earlier has arrived. The unfette...Show More

23:32 | May 15th

Hollywood execs thought Netflix was crazy to give up advertising and spin off opportunities by letting viewers flop on a couch and watch a whole season of a show all at once. But Netflix knew it was onto something. All of their studies and focus grou...Show More

08:07 | May 14th

Life is Short with Justin Long finds the actor sitting down with some of the funniest and most intriguing people of today, like Dax Shepard, Olivia Wilde and Neil Patrick Harris. No topics are out of bounds, and no questions are too personal. Subscri...Show More

28:52 | May 13th

We take a step back to explore how a little company called Home Box Office went from serving B-movies to 325 homes in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania to become the juggernaut that we know as HBO. In the process, HBO, became the standard by which all other...Show More

23:13 | May 8th

You know the expression “content is king”? Well it turns out, sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s a hard-working algorithm that burrows into customer habits and viewing patterns. With that, Netflix had a clear upper hand on Blockbuster. That, and the ...Show More

24:22 | May 6th

Thinking like your enemy is the best way to beat them, and during the war, Blockbuster tried every trick in the book to get inside Netflix. Sometimes they succeeded — sending “housewives” into warehouses as spies — and sometimes things didn’t go as p...Show More

23:00 | May 1st

After Hastings pleaded with Antioco to buy Blockbuster online, Antioco agreed to present Hasting’s proposal to the board. What he didn’t tell him was that he was pushing the board to reject the offer so Netflix would wither and die. Meanwhile, Netfli...Show More

29:34 | Apr 29th

The way we watch is changing so rapidly that we’ve decided to revisit our very first and most popular Business War: Netflix versus Blockbuster. We’re re-airing an expanded eight-part series following Netflix’s battles against HBO and today’s new entr...Show More

27:11 | Apr 24th

Electric. Diesel. Driverless. Automobile Magazine’s New York Bureau Chief, Jamie Kitman, joins to talk about the latest developments in the car industry and what’s next for Ferrari and Lamborghini. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Zip Recruit...Show More

25:43 | Apr 22nd

It is 1997. For decades, Lamborghini has struggled to survive as a company, and to compete with its nemesis Ferrari. All that is about to change. Volkswagen buys Lambo and injects it with cash and bulletproof German engineering. For the first time ev...Show More

05:45 | Apr 18th

Sports rivalries can fuel fans and athletes to fight and argue for years. But what’s the real story behind these epic rivalries? From Wondery, the company behind “Business Wars” and “American Scandal” comes Sports Wars, an electric new series that of...Show More

30:25 | Apr 17th

It’s 1970. At his factory in Italy, Ferruccio Lamborghini is desperate to build a car that can outdo his rival, Enzo Ferrari, whose Ferrari factory is just 20 miles away. With the help of genius designers and engineers, Lamborghini comes up with what...Show More

27:55 | Apr 15th

It’s the early 1960s. In Maranello, Italy, Enzo Ferrari has made a name for himself building the most exotic road cars in the world. But when a dissatisfied customer named Ferruccio Lamborghini shows up to complain about his Ferrari’s busted clutch, ...Show More

33:11 | Apr 10th

Bratz. Monster High. Funko. These are the toys that rule the roost in 2019. Veteran toy industry analyst Sean McGowan joins to discuss the big business of toys today, how Hasbro and Mattel can compete, and what’s going on with Lego. You can find ne...Show More

31:07 | Apr 8th

With the world plugging into the Internet, toys are under pressure. Kids are swapping plastic play for screen-based entertainment and both Mattel and Hasbro need to adapt. The question is: how? Mattel’s also finding out the hard way that Barbie’s re...Show More

26:53 | Apr 3rd

A few months ago, Mattel’s revenues were just fifty million dollars behind Hasbro’s. But now that Hasbro’s swallowed Tonka—the classic maker of Nerf, Play-Doh, and Monopoly—Mattel is half a billion dollars behind, and CEO John Amerman isn’t happy abo...Show More

27:12 | Apr 1st

It’s the early 1980s and things are not looking good for Hasbro. The company hasn’t had a hit since Hungry Hungry Hippos; its founding CEO Merrill Hassenfeld has just died; now Star Wars dolls have just about gobbled up the entire action figure marke...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

04:14 | Apr 1st

Today we have a special bonus episode with breaking news from the Business Wars Daily desk on this Monday, April 1.

27:12 | Mar 27th

Sizzlers, Mattel’s new motorized Hot Wheels, were supposed to be the top toy this Christmas. But sales have fizzled, leaving Mattel $30 million below target. For the last ten years, Mattel’s done exceptionally well by its investors, but now the toyma...Show More

25:16 | Mar 25th

It’s the 1960s and Hasbro is struggling. The pencil manufacturer turned toymaker hasn’t had a major success since Mr. Potato Head hit the shelves in 1952, and it’s starting to lose money. If the company doesn’t act fast, it’ll be headed for bankruptc...Show More

27:11 | Mar 20th

It’s the late 1940s and two small toymakers are taking their first uneasy steps. The names of these young hopefuls are Hasbro and Mattel. One’s an offshoot of a pencil manufacturer. The other a husband-and-wife garage start-up. But toy-mayking, the...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

29:35 | Mar 18th

Heavy bass, high synth, daring rhymes schemes, and melody. These are the elements that epitomize the 90s hip hop music of Death Row Records and Bad Boy records. Charlie Harding, co-host of Switched On Pop helps us break down two of the era’s most sem...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

24:15 | Mar 13th

The rivalry between the East and West Coasts of hip-hop has become an all out war, with Death Row and Bad Boy on the front lines of the conflict. Within six months, the war claims the lives of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls, sending shockwaves throug...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

23:23 | Mar 11th

By the time Biggie Smalls meets Tupac Shakur, Tupac is already a big star. He hasn’t yet signed with Death Row, but he’s already sold millions of records and starred in two feature films. Biggie, on the other hand, is still waiting for his first albu...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

26:43 | Mar 6th

Biggie Smalls has a recording deal on the horizon, but he doubts it’ll ever go through. Now that Puffy is out of a job, the future of Bad Boy looks dubious at best. If Puffy can’t find a new distributor fast, the songs Biggie’s been recording might n...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

25:53 | Feb 27th

In the 1990s, the landscape of American music was changed forever by two titans of hip hop: Death Row and Bad Boy. The rivalry between these iconic rap labels would go on to become as legendary as it was notorious. But in these early days? It’s all g...Show More

32:53 | Feb 25th

Mike Pesca, Slate, joins to talk about the biggest risks facing the NFL, whether the Patriots are good or bad for the league, and what our culture would look like if football never took off as a professional sport in the first place. Plus, he talks a...Show More

26:58 | Feb 20th

The battle between the NFL and the USFL finally comes to a head. Donald Trump has bullied his way to the top of the USFL and pressured his league into suing the NFL for violating the Sherman Antitrust Act. But the NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle is no...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

11:16 | Feb 19th

Every great collaboration is a love story. It’s intense. Passionate. Along the way, there are flashes of love, hate, pride, ego, ambition, and brilliance. This is One Plus One, the show about the spark that drives two original thinkers to ultimate su...Show More

25:43 | Feb 18th

For nearly two full years, the mighty NFL sat idly by as the upstart USFL tried to chip away at its status, talent, and reputation as the most powerful sports league on the planet. Now, the NFL is ready to settle the score, once and for all. The lea...Show More

24:37 | Feb 13th

Description: It’s 1984, and at USFL franchise offices across the country, multi-million dollar contracts are flowing like Gatorade. As the United States Football League prepares for kickoff on its second season, owners race to recruit the best colleg...Show More

25:47 | Feb 11th

By most measures, the USFL’s debut season is a success. The games post solid numbers--in both ticket sales and television ratings--offering undeniable proof that there’s an audience for professional spring football. Still, the league is hemorrhaging ...Show More

28:54 | Jan 30th

Oreo vs. Hydrox. Twitter vs. TikTok. Business rivals are doing battle every day. On Business Wars Daily, we give you a brief daily update, Monday through Friday, on the latest wars between the world’s biggest companies happening right now. On this ...Show More

24:51 | Jan 23rd

It’s a new century and times are tough for the burger giants. Burger King’s in a rut and McDonald’s is about to report its first loss in nearly 40 years. Both brands need to reinvent themselves fast. But can they come up with strategies robust enough...Show More

25:59 | Jan 21st

Burger King is under pressure. McDonald’s is wowing the nation with a new way to eat chicken and Wendy’s is quickly closing in on the number two fast food spot. Backed into a corner, Burger King prepares to bite back with an ad campaign attacking its...Show More

24:13 | Jan 16th

It’s the 1970s, and the burger barons are turning to TV advertising to propel profits skyward. McDonald’s is betting that a little song and dance can give it the competitive edge, but Burger King is stepping up their ads as well: debuting a killer ne...Show More

25:21 | Jan 14th

By the mid-1960s, Americans have developed a taste for fast, delicious, affordable food — and they’re demanding more. U.S. fast food franchises — McDonald’s, Burger King and Burger Chef — know that if they want to feed America and win the burger wars...Show More

27:06 | Jan 9th

It’s the late 1950s and fry cooks are flipping as fast as they can. But McDonald’s and Insta-Burger King’s desire for national success far outstrips their ability to deliver. It’s not enough to just make a better burger: bad contracts, bad equipment,...Show More

25:50 | Jan 7th

It’s 1948, and somewhere around the edge of the Mojave Desert, a drive-in restaurant is making waves. It's called McDonald’s and it’s like no burger joint anyone’s seen before—a carhop-free eatery with lightning fast service, and shockingly low price...Show More

29:53 | Dec 20th, 2018

Mardiros Iskenderian was known for two things: the unbelievable generosity he showed to the Armenian community, and the deep love he expressed for his family—particularly for his mother, whom he treated like a queen. So why did Mardiros try to cut h...Show More

22:35 | Dec 18th, 2018

It’s January 14th, 2003, and 56-year-old Mardiros Iskenderian, the founder of the family-owned chain of rotisserie restaurants Zankou Chicken, is leaving the house for the first time in months. Twenty years ago, the Iskenderians transplanted their b...Show More

28:50 | Dec 18th, 2018

The debut of the Apple iPhone in 2007 means unprecedented changes for human communication. But even its inventor Steve Jobs at first fails to realize that the most powerful part of his invention isn’t the music player or the web browser. It’s the map...Show More

27:34 | Dec 13th, 2018

Microsoft has officially won the battle against Netscape, but for Bill Gates, the browser war is far from over. The federal government has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft, and called Gates to Washington, D.C. for questioning. Hotshot pr...Show More

29:12 | Dec 11th, 2018

To compete with Netscape, Bill Gates is forced to do the one thing he hates most: give tech away for free. He bundles Internet Explorer with Windows, effectively making his browser ubiquitous--and Netscape’s redundant. Suddenly, Netscape, the company...Show More

26:18 | Dec 6th, 2018

It’s summer 1995, and Bill Gates is worried about the sudden rise of the Internet. In the world of computers, Gates is used to being in the driver’s seat. Now it seems he’s not even in the car.  Marc Andreessen has just launched the latest version ...Show More

26:08 | Dec 4th, 2018

It’s 1974, and a young programmer named Paul Allen has just caught a glimpse of the world’s first personal computer, the Altair 8800. It has the potential to change the computing landscape forever — but it doesn’t yet have an operating system. Altair...Show More

22:14 | Nov 29th, 2018

Two disgruntled tech whizzes, Jim Clark and Marc Andreessen, join forces to exact revenge on the companies that wronged them, building a browser so fast and powerful that it wipes their competitors off the face of the web. In private, they call it a ...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

08:02 | Nov 28th, 2018

As editor in chief at Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, Tina Brown has had opportunity to sit down with the world’s most important people to hear their thoughts on the zeitgeist and on her new Podcast, “TBD with Tina Brown,” she invites you to hear her...Show More

25:35 | Nov 27th, 2018

It’s 1992, and in the basement of the chemistry building at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, two computer science students are working on a new web browser. Up to this point, browsing has made up less than one percent of all internet t...Show More

29:34 | Nov 20th, 2018

As the extreme marketing battle between Red Bull and Monster reaches unprecedented heights (128,000 feet above sea level, to be precise), a new challenger steps onto the scene. 5-hour Energy, the tiny titan in the two ounce can, quickly plows through...Show More

29:17 | Nov 15th, 2018

As Red Bull plans its U.S. invasion, an unlikely upstart vies to beat it to market. Led by branding guru Mark Hall, the wholesome Hansen Beverage Company launches Monster, a grungy, all-American alternative to its yuppie European competitor. Not only...Show More

28:55 | Nov 13th, 2018

It’s the early 1980s, and in Bangkok, Thailand, a jet-lagged toothpaste marketing exec named Dietrich Mateschitz has just tasted Krating Daeng, an energy tonic popular with rickshaw drivers. The flavor is repellant—it’s sickly sweet—but to Mateschitz...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

26:28 | Nov 8th, 2018

Host David Brown sits down with L.A. Times pop music critic Mikael Wood to talk about how Napster changed not only the music business, but music itself. It turns out digital music downloads paved the way for a lot of trends we see in music today… Jus...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

04:14 | Nov 7th, 2018

What is it like to be famous before you’re famous? What is it like to walk in the shoes of another person? Each episode of IMAGINED LIFE takes you on an immersive journey into the life of a world-famous person. It’ll be someone you may think you know...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

29:06 | Nov 6th, 2018

Napster is approaching its death throes. The file sharing company has one shot left: Bertelsmann, the record label that’s confident it has come up with a foolproof plan to profit from its former foe. But Bertelsmann forgot about one thing. It needs t...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

24:05 | Nov 1st, 2018

Some of the biggest names in music have gathered to duke it out over the future of Napster. The Senate Judiciary Committee’s intellectual property hearing finally brings the pioneers of the peer-to-peer revolution face to face with the record labels....Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

27:29 | Oct 30th, 2018

As the game of cat and mouse heats up with the record labels. The labels know that unless Napster is stopped, it’ll destroy the record labels. That doesn’t stop Napster co-founder Sean Parker from feeling the vice grips closing in. By early 2000, Nap...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

26:27 | Oct 25th, 2018

Napster co-founders Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker finally get to Silicon Valley, where their dream for music sharing is supposed to take off.  When word gets out about what Napster is doing, software programmers are literally banging on the doors, be...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

23:30 | Oct 23rd, 2018

Naysayers tell Shawn Fanning that only an experienced Silicon Valley software engineer solve all the technological challenges to get Napster working.  But Shawn thinks he’s got the answers and asks himself, ‘’why not me?” And he gets to work, turni...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

23:42 | Oct 18th, 2018

It’s 2000, and the record industry is just waking up to a major threat to its business model: an online file-sharing system created by a 17-year-old kid from Massachusetts. With Napster — so called after the nickname its founder earned on the basketb...Show More

24:37 | Oct 16th, 2018

Host David Brown sits down with Tristan Donovan, series writer and author of Replay: The History of Video Games, just as this console war enters uncharted territory. What’s next for Xbox, PlayStation and wild card Nintendo Switch? Hint: probably not ...Show More

26:48 | Oct 11th, 2018

As Nintendo burns with the failure of Wii U, Sony can’t woo PS2 users to the new Playstation 3. It vows to not make that mistake again, and the Playstation 4 prioritizes on what the gamers want: a better gaming experience. But it’s not just the focus...Show More

10:05 | Oct 10th, 2018

The courtroom can be a battlefield over money, people’s rights, and even their lives. For some cases, the consequences can affect us long after the verdict is read. Based on extensive interviews and court transcripts, Wondery’s new podcast LEGAL WAR...Show More

26:07 | Oct 9th, 2018

Microsoft put all its efforts into it’s new console, the Xbox 360 to beat combat Sony’s market share and it looked like it was working. Thousands of consoles sold, and then suddenly, mysteriously, thousands of consoles died. Meanwhile Sony announces ...Show More

25:13 | Oct 4th, 2018

Sony was preparing Playstation to eventually replace personal computers. Microsoft sees that coming and goes into combat mode. Bill Gates spends more than two billion dollars to launch Microsoft’s Xbox console with innards that Gates hopes will not o...Show More

27:35 | Oct 2nd, 2018

Host David Brown chats with freelance journalist and series writer Joseph Guinto about the 22 years he’s spent covering Southwest Airlines… including his memories meeting and interviewing Southwest’s major players, from Rollin King to Herb Kelleher h...Show More

26:26 | Sep 27th, 2018

Thanks to deregulation, no-frills knock offs of Southwest take to the skies like crows.  About 120 airlines have gone out of business or filed for bankruptcy since the industry was deregulated in 1978. American’s SABRE system optimizes...everything...Show More

26:03 | Sep 25th, 2018

Everyone loves Herb Kelleher—even FAA regulators. The onetime corporate counsel-turned-CEO is coming into his own at the helm of Southwest. But his latest challenge is coming up with a way to skirt the FAA’s pesky “slot” system, designed to limit air...Show More

25:40 | Sep 20th, 2018

As deregulation dawns, Southwest Airlines’ founder and CEO are locked in a power struggle. In the middle is Herb Kelleher, Southwest’s corporate attorney. And after 18 months serving as a punching bag for the company’s top brass, he’s had enough. Bu...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

15:55 | Sep 18th, 2018

Since the founding of the United States, in every generation, in every field of business, politics, sports and society, we’ve watched in shock as corruption, deceit and desire bring down heroes, titans and those we thought we could trust. In the aft...Show More

21:24 | Sep 18th, 2018

The computer age is on the horizon, and American Airlines has a secret weapon: SABRE. Sure, the airline is top of the heap under the current pen-and-paper reservation system — the one where travel agents use a massive phonebook to look up flights, th...Show More

23:48 | Sep 13th, 2018

Baniff and Southwest battled in court for domination over the skies. Southwest came out on top for a little while, but Baniff pushed back with prices Southwest just couldn't beat. The only way Southwest could fight back was to give the mostly male, m...Show More

25:54 | Sep 11th, 2018

In Texas in the 1960s, Rollin King had a crazy idea. He wanted to create a no-frills airline service that served San Antonio, Dallas and Houston. All he and his lawyer had to do was convince the Federal Regulations Bureau that they had no jurisdictio...Show More

26:18 | Sep 6th, 2018

Host David Brown chats with series writer Tristan Donovan, author of Fizz: How Soda Shook Up the World, about some of the juicy tidbits that didn’t make the final series. Like Fanta’s roots in Nazi Germany, Pepsi’s frantic struggle to make sure Coca-...Show More

29:05 | Sep 4th, 2018

Coke continues to grapple with Pepsi’s winning ads, but as Y2K nears both companies realize this isn’t just a cola war anymore. There’s more backlash for both companies, this time from schools. Coke and Pepsi are now seen as allies in America’s obesi...Show More

28:03 | Aug 30th, 2018

With the Pepsi Challenge under attack by Coke, Pepsi needs a new ad campaign. So the company turns for inspiration to the biggest pop star in the world: Michael Jackson. Meanwhile, Coca-Cola has a new chief executive who’s convinced tinkering with Co...Show More

26:41 | Aug 28th, 2018

Welcome to the Pepsi Generation. As Pepsi fires up a hot new ad campaign, Coca-Cola starts getting nervous. But a sudden plane detour through Ireland gives Coke executive Bill Backer inspiration for one of the most iconic ads of the 20th century. It ...Show More

25:57 | Aug 23rd, 2018

With world war on the horizon, Coca-Cola and Pepsi face a supply crisis. How to get enough sugar to continue bottling their sweet fizzy goodness? One man has the answer -- to secure its supply line, Coke must sell itself as the all-American cola. For...Show More

28:11 | Aug 21st, 2018

The cola cops are coming. Pepsi, an upstart Coca-Cola imitator, grabs its rival’s attention by serving up its own beverage to unsuspecting soda fountain customers. Coca-Cola moves fast -- but it’s not enough to stop Charles Guth, Pepsi-Cola’s new own...Show More

27:47 | Aug 16th, 2018

In turn of the century Atlanta, pharmacist John Pemberton has invented a dynamite health tonic with some secret ingredients his customers can’t get enough of. There’s only one problem. With the city about to go dry, the temperance authorities are com...Show More

28:04 | Aug 14th, 2018

We hope you enjoyed our series on eBay vs PayPal. Here to discuss her thoughts on the PayPal mafia alums is Kara Swisher. Swisher is the self-described "grumpy lady of tech" and host of the podcast Recode Decode. She's known for her tough takes on Si...Show More

25:30 | Aug 9th, 2018

PayPal is running out of time. The online payment service is hauling in new users, but its bottom line is bleeding red. Without a buyer to pump it full of cash soon, the company could go under. Should it take the safe route and sell out to its longti...Show More

26:39 | Aug 7th, 2018

By late 2000, PayPal and are yoked together, with CEO Elon Musk leading the newly combined company. But it’s a rocky marriage: PayPal’s founders clash with their new leader over everything from his imperious management style to his choice...Show More

24:43 | Aug 2nd, 2018

Remember the summer of 2000? The Olympics were in full swing and PayPal was under attack. Not from eBay, but Russian hackers. In looking for soft targets in the early days of the untethered Internet, PayPal was the fattest cow. On top of that, there ...Show More

26:37 | Jul 31st, 2018

In the midst of the dot-com boom, there's also a lot of dot-com bust. PayPal desperately needed to grow but they companies who'd raised millions more suddenly disintegrate. The solution was so simple it seemed almost illegal - let the converted prose...Show More

26:39 | Jul 26th, 2018

As eBay gathers steam, a libertarian chess champion and a programmer who fled Communist Ukraine team up to change the world with their encryption software. But when their plan to piggyback on the ubiquitous Palm Pilot hits a snag, they stumble upon a...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

08:03 | Jul 25th, 2018

If you had to risk everything on a great idea, could you do it? We want to introduce you to a new podcast that we know you'll love. Raising The Bar is hosted by siblings and founders of the lifestyle juggernaut DryBar, Alli Webb and Michael Landau. Y...Show More

26:43 | Jul 24th, 2018

At the dawn of the dotcom era, a Silicon Valley tech geek on a personal vendetta rolls out the world’s first e-commerce site. Vintage lunchboxes? Second-hand guitars? B-list celebrity autographs? It all finds a home on AuctionWeb, and before long the...Show More

02:39 | Jul 19th, 2018

Want more Business Wars? We have your daily dose.  Subscribe to Business Wars Daily wherever you listen to Business Wars. It's Thursday, July 19, and we're looking at Wag vs. Rover.

02:22 | Jul 17th, 2018

Want more Business Wars? We have your daily dose.  Subscribe to Business Wars Daily wherever you listen to Business Wars. It's Tuesday, July 17, and we're looking at Uber vs. Lyft.

33:45 | Jul 12th, 2018

It's been a hard fought battle for decades, and in the 1970s there's no signs of Ford or Chevrolet slowing down. But this time they're fighting on new grounds, ones dominated by Japanese cars. Honda, Toyota and Datsun dominate the market, and Ford an...Show More

30:37 | Jul 10th, 2018

In the 1960s, the biggest generation of Americans of all time are reaching driving age. They want cars, and they want them to be fast and powerful, and they want them now. The best showcase for these cars is by winning races, and in the 1960s, Ford a...Show More

29:42 | Jul 5th, 2018

FDR believed that WWII was a contest of mass production. Whoever could build the most trucks, tanks, guns and airplanes would come out on top. What power could defeat the United States of America and its massive automobile industry? But for Roosevelt...Show More

31:55 | Jul 3rd, 2018

In 1896, Henry Ford puttered around Detroit streets testing his “Quadricycle.” This was the whimsical beginning to a revolution that redesigned the landscape of America. Cars changed the way America lived, worked, ate, shopped, and listened to music...Show More

27:09 | Jun 28th, 2018

Joining us today is Gabriel Kahn, a professor of journalism at the University of Southern California. He’s a former Los Angeles bureau chief for the Wall Street Journal and a frequent commentator on monetization and the media. He’s also taught cour...Show More

25:59 | Jun 26th, 2018

By 1900, the days of yellow journalism were already fading, and both William Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer were searching for a new direction even as their newspapers diverged. Hearst tries for a political career, but finds himself defeated and draggin...Show More

22:02 | Jun 21st, 2018

A close up look at a crisis of their own making. One that nearly cost Hearst and Pulitzer their grip on the country’s first media empires. Instead of pitting them against each other, the crisis would see the two media moguls finding rare common groun...Show More

27:16 | Jun 19th, 2018

What happens when there’s no news? You have to MAKE the news. When Hearst heard from his top reporter that the Spanish-Cuban tension wasn’t looking like anything would happen, Hearst wasn’t just going to wait around for an explosion. He already bou...Show More

22:05 | Jun 14th, 2018

In 1883, 15 years before the Headless Torso Murder, New York City's population was rapidly growing and the newspaper scene was pretty sleepy. The city's nearly 50 daily papers, even the small New York Times, was a pretty sedate bunch, informing citiz...Show More

23:22 | Jun 12th, 2018

In 1897, America looked very different. Carriages rolled through the streets of New York. Mass media was just growing up, and Hearst was convinced that carrier pigeons - hunted to extinction by 1914 - were what would give his paper the edge during th...Show More

24:43 | Jun 7th, 2018

This is the beginning of a mystery, a great business rivalry, and a look into American history. To tell the story of Hearst vs Pulitzer, we called our friend Lindsay Graham over at American History Tellers for help. The Headless Torso mystery is abo...Show More

27:04 | Jun 5th, 2018

We're wrapping our coverage of the console wars between Nintendo and Sony. David is joined by Vance Wallace, who knows video games from both sides of the controller. In the '90s, Vance was one of the best players in the world for Quake. He's also a g...Show More

25:33 | May 31st, 2018

After years of sitting on the sidelines of the next-generation console war, Nintendo is finally ready to make its move. But, the years it’s spent building it’s reassuring family-friendly reputation is now a weakness. Nintendo children of the 80s are ...Show More

23:28 | May 29th, 2018

Nintendo decided early on that the Nintendo 64 would be a cartridge console, instead of a CD console. But CDs are much cheaper to make and have much better graphics. Game companies are upset, and defect to Sony. In a few months time, Sony has two of ...Show More

24:47 | May 24th, 2018

This is a story about Sony and Nintendo, but it also involves a little company called Sega. Ever play Sonic the Hedgehog? That’s Sega. And during Nintendo’s domination of the US market, they were the only company able to fight back. That is, until th...Show More

25:41 | May 22nd, 2018

From the moment it began, the PlayStation project was in danger. The problem was none other than PlayStations knight and chief advocate: Kutaragi. He thought the now-iconic handlebar controller design was “too different” from the flat rectangles peop...Show More

30:14 | May 17th, 2018

It's 1949. 22-year old Hiroshi Yamauchi is the heir apparent for his family's playing card company, Nintendo. From humble beginnings as a scrappy street stall founded in Kyoto's back alleys to the largest card company in Japan by the time Yamauchi ta...Show More

30:12 | May 15th, 2018

Once a symbol of 80s teenage nerdom, video games are now as common as television sets in American households. Can you imagine a world where the Sony PlayStation didn’t come out? That’s what almost happened. Originally conceived as a joint venture bet...Show More

35:33 | May 10th, 2018

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26:47 | May 8th, 2018

After all that IBM has been through over the decades, it would have never in a million years guessed that their undoing would be at the hands of a scrawny and unknown computer nerd named Bill Gates. Gates sees the future, but can IBM catch up? Will t...Show More

25:03 | May 3rd, 2018

It’s 1961. Since his father retired 5 years earlier, Thomas Watson Jr pushed to modernize IBM from the top down. New management, new ideas, newer, faster, machines. The company has grown, employing 1,000 people, they’ve dominated the emerging compute...Show More

26:20 | May 1st, 2018

In Episode 1 the UNIVAC successfully predicted that Eisenhower would win the 1952 election. In Philadelphia, a champagne hangover quickly settled in over the Remington Rand building, the company elated at its success. But over at IBM, a company that ...Show More

24:01 | Apr 26th, 2018

What’s a 16% market share when the public thinks you have more? A potential anti-trust suit, if you’re IBM. Watson Jr. sees a potential lawsuit as a way out from under his father’s control. Sr. sees his company rotting away in the hands of a kid who...Show More

25:30 | Apr 24th, 2018

How do you really “get ahead” in a war? Sometimes you don’t have to do anything, you just wait for your opponent to fumble. And in the late 1940s, IBM’s CEO Thomas Watson Sr., did. He’s just beginning to grasp the potential of these electronic machi...Show More

23:16 | Apr 19th, 2018

With so much information at our fingertips, it’s hard to remember that we haven’t always walked around with supercomputers in our pockets. In fact, in 1952, CBS thought that Americans would find it SO hard to imagine that a machine could even predict...Show More

25:00 | Apr 17th, 2018

With all the hype around portable and smart speakers, it's easy to forget that they didn't always exist. In fact, it took one fateful meeting with Monster Cables and Interscope Records to really kick the industry off. We'll talk about when headphone...Show More

43:50 | Apr 12th, 2018

What's that? Up in the sky? It's another episode of Business Wars. Today we're talking to two super guests, Reed Tucker is a journalist living in New York City, and the author of the book Slugfest: Inside the Epic 50-Year Battle Between Marvel and D...Show More

26:33 | Apr 10th, 2018

After more than 50 years of fighting for the hearts and attention spans of millions of readers, television viewers, and movie-goers - who wins this war? Is it DC, the original comic company company behind classic American heroes that defined the drea...Show More

24:03 | Apr 5th, 2018

Appearances on radio programs, television shows and thousands of comic books - all just another day in the life of a superhero. But to get a larger than life hero onto a larger than life screen, there’s one secret ingredient: verisimilitude. As both ...Show More

23:59 | Apr 3rd, 2018

It’s 1970 and the unthinkable just happened. Jack Kirby, one of the men who made Marvel, has defected to DC. With him he brought an idea that may just end Marvel for good. But as soon as DC seems to be pulling back into the lead, something else goes ...Show More

21:56 | Mar 29th, 2018

As Marvel’s richer storylines captivate more readers, DC just can’t keep up, or fully understand Marvel’s success. They even try directly copying Marvel’s style, but go about it in the worst way. Just when it looks like DC’s days at the top are numbe...Show More

23:10 | Mar 27th, 2018

We’ve talked about several wars on this series, but here’s a first: DC and Marvel engaging with each other, sniping, making fun, and getting their fans involved in the argument. A series of editor’s letters, guest columns, and fan mail printed in the...Show More

22:38 | Mar 21st, 2018

In the early 1960s, the Space Race was on, Chubby Checkers got everyone doin’ the twist and Superman was turning 25. DC has it all - a legacy comic, the talented writers and illustrators, and plush offices in Manhattan. Marvel is around but it’s much...Show More

45:24 | Mar 20th, 2018

Today we talked to Liz Dolan, former Nike CMO, and David Meltzer, sports marketing guru and agent about this vicious war. If you loved them here, you’ll love their podcasts even more. Liz co-hosts Safe For Work, a show that answers your burning busi...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

11:15 | Mar 19th, 2018

Sometimes the workplace can get crazy and messy, that's where the podcast Safe For Work comes in. Join the former head of marketing for Nike, NatGeo, and the Oprah Winfrey Network, Liz Dolan and recovering lawyer turned comedian and executive recruit...Show More

19:48 | Mar 15th, 2018

The rivalry between Nike and Adidas has been intense for decades, but always respectful. But with intensity comes… defectors. Just three at the beginning, who set out to create a “Disneyland for designers.” And it worked. For the first time in a long...Show More

26:09 | Mar 13th, 2018

Nike, the late starter struck gold with its “Just Do It” campaign. Launched in 1988, the shoe giant finally had a tagline as good as its shoes. Meanwhile, Adidas, the brand that started and found success long before Nike was even a dream, finds itsel...Show More

27:11 | Mar 8th, 2018

Every new Nike employee gets a list of principles that serves as the company’s philosophy. One: Our business is change. Two: We’re on offense, all the time. With those principles Nike sprinted from $29 million in revenue in 1973 to more than $850...Show More

21:09 | Mar 6th, 2018

As long as there have been professional sports, there have been professional athletes, willing to accept money to wear certain brands, but the biggest endorsement deals were only made possible by a mid-20th century invention: the television. Fans rea...Show More

23:57 | Mar 1st, 2018

Rudi and Adi Dassler started the “Dassler Business” in the 1920s in their parent’s garage, recycling materials from WWI military gear and uniforms. They got a pair of their track spikes on an athlete named Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympics and the com...Show More

21:33 | Feb 27th, 2018

In 2015, Kanye West turned his back on Nike, an all out battle in the ongoing war for sneaker supremacy. Nike and Adidas are two multinational companies worth billions in an industry estimated to be valued at $220 Billion by 2020 (which is double the...Show More

23:44 | Feb 22nd, 2018

Rich Greenfield is a tech and media analyst with BTIG who’s been covering this battle in some capacity for decades. We had the chance to talk to him in depth on today’s episode. Follow Rich on Twitter @RichBTIG Support us by supporting our sponsors...Show More

25:30 | Feb 20th, 2018

Netflix goes from being a streaming company to a movement in which consumers all over the world decide what show to watch -- and when and how they watch them. The future that Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph envisioned two decades earlier has arrived....Show More

23:26 | Feb 15th, 2018

Hollywood execs thought Netflix was crazy to give up advertising and spin off opportunities by letting viewers flop on a couch and watch a whole season of a show all at once. But Netflix knew it was on to something. All of their studies and focus gro...Show More

30:11 | Feb 13th, 2018

We take a step back to explore how a little company called Home Box Office went from serving B-movies to 325 homes in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania to become the juggernaut that we know as HBO. In the process, HBO, become the standard by which all other...Show More

22:43 | Feb 8th, 2018

You know that expression “content is king”? Well it turns out, sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it’s a hard-working algorithm that burrows into customer habits and viewing patterns. With that, Netflix had a clear upper hand on Blockbuster. That, and th...Show More

22:27 | Feb 6th, 2018

Thinking like your enemy is the best way to beat them, and during the war, Blockbuster tried every trick in the books to get inside Netflix. Sometimes they succeeded - sending “housewives” into warehouses as spies, and sometimes things didn’t go as p...Show More

19:57 | Feb 6th, 2018

After Hastings pleaded with Antioco to buy Blockbuster Online, Antioco agreed to present Hasting’s proposal to the board. What he didn’t tell him was that he was pushing the board to reject the offer so Netflix would wither and die. Meanwhile, Netfli...Show More

01:23 | Jan 19th, 2018

Netflix-HBO. Nike-Adidas. Business is war. Sometimes the prize is your wallet. Sometimes your attention. Sometimes just the fun of beating the other guy. From Wondery, the network behind Dirty John and American History Tellers. Premieres February 6...Show More