How I Built This with Guy Raz 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.
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How I Built This with Guy Raz

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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.More from How I Built This with Guy Raz »

Most Recent Episodes

Whitney Wolfe, founder of Bumble. Angie Wang for NPR hide caption

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Angie Wang for NPR

Bumble: Whitney Wolfe

At age 22, Whitney Wolfe helped launch Tinder, one of the world's most popular dating apps. But a few years later, she left Tinder and filed a lawsuit against the company alleging sexual harassment. The ensuing attention from the media – and cyberbullying from strangers – prompted her to launch Bumble, a new kind of dating app where women make the first move. Today, the Bumble app has been downloaded more than 20 million times. PLUS for our postscript "How You Built That," how Michelle Innis invented De-Fishing soap to freshen up her fisherman husband, and how it wound up in WalMart.

Bumble: Whitney Wolfe

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Wendy Kopp, founder of Teach For America Connor Heckert for NPR hide caption

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Connor Heckert for NPR

Teach For America: Wendy Kopp

In 1989, college senior Wendy Kopp was trying to figure out how to improve American public schools. For her senior thesis, she proposed creating a national teaching corps that would recruit recent college grads to teach in underserved schools. One year later, she launched the nonprofit, Teach for America. Today, TFA has 50,000 alumni, a budget of nearly $300 million, and continues to place thousands of teachers across the country. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," how a game of Secret Santa led Chris Waters to create Constructed Adventures, elaborate scavenger hunts for all occasions.

Teach For America: Wendy Kopp

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Host Guy Raz speaks with Gary Hirshberg, founder of yogurt maker Stonyfield. Suharu Ogawa for NPR hide caption

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Suharu Ogawa for NPR

Stonyfield Yogurt: Gary Hirshberg

In 1983, two hippie farmers decided to sell homemade organic yogurt to help raise money for their educational farm in New Hampshire. As the enterprise grew into a business, it faced one near-death experience after another, but it never quite died. In fact it grew — into one of the most popular yogurt brands in the US. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," how Indiana Jones inspired Steve Humble to sell secret passageways for a living.

Stonyfield Yogurt: Gary Hirshberg

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Host Guy Raz speaks with Starbucks' Howard Shultz in a special live episode recorded in Seattle. Angie Wang for NPR hide caption

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Angie Wang for NPR

Live Episode! Starbucks: Howard Schultz

During his first visit to Seattle in 1981, Howard Schultz walked into a little coffee bean shop called Starbucks and fell in love with it. A few years later, he bought the six-store chain for almost 4 million dollars, and began to transform it into a ubiquitous landmark, a "third place" between home and work. Today Starbucks is the third largest restaurant chain in the world, serving about 100 million people a week. Recorded live in Seattle.

Live Episode! Starbucks: Howard Schultz

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Southwest Airlines: Herb Kelleher

We're hard at work planning more live shows, so we bring you one of our favorites from last year: Southwest Airlines. 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. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," how Monica Mizrachi and her son Solomon built EzPacking, a family business selling packing cubes.

Southwest Airlines: Herb Kelleher

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From 1958 to today, many generations of children have come to know the different iterations of the three lovable rodents known as The Chipmunks. Angie Wang for NPR hide caption

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The Chipmunks: Ross Bagdasarian Jr. & Janice Karman

Years after his father created a hit singing group of anthropomorphic rodents called The Chipmunks, Ross Bagdasarian Jr. made it his mission to revive his dad's beloved characters. Over the last 40 years, Ross Jr. and his wife Janice have built The Chipmunks into a billion dollar media franchise – run out of their home in Santa Barbara, California. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," how Daniel Clark-Webster and his three friends came up with RompHim – a company specializing in male rompers.

The Chipmunks: Ross Bagdasarian Jr. & Janice Karman

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Sadie Lincoln, co-founder of Barre3 Angie Wang hide caption

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Angie Wang

Barre3: Sadie Lincoln

Sadie Lincoln and her husband, Chris, had what seemed like the perfect life – well-paying jobs, a house in the Bay Area, two kids. But one day they decided to sell everything and start a new business called Barre3: a studio exercise program that blends ballet with pilates and yoga. Today, Barre3 has more than 100 studios across the country. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," how a husband-and-wife team experimented with fruit, spices and vinegar and came up with a gourmet ketchup line called 'Chups.

Barre3: Sadie Lincoln

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How recovering heroin addict Suroosh Alvi used "punk rock capitalism" to build a multi-billion dollar media company. Andrew Holder for NPR hide caption

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VICE: Suroosh Alvi

We're hard at work planning our upcoming live show, so we bring you this favorite from the last year: VICE. Suroosh Alvi was a recovering addict when he started a scrappy underground magazine in Montreal. It grew into a multi-billion dollar company that has shaken up the world of journalism. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," we check back with Kent Sheridan of Voila Coffee, a company aiming to make instant coffee with the quality of a four-dollar pour over.

VICE: Suroosh Alvi

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Alexis Ohanian and Steve Huffman started Reddit with $12,000 and a mascot named Snoo. Angie Wang for NPR hide caption

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Live Episode! Reddit: Alexis Ohanian & Steve Huffman

With $12,000 and a mascot named Snoo, two former college roommates designed a web site they hoped would become "the front page of the Internet." Today, despite growing pains, personal issues and persistent trolls, Reddit has over 300 million monthly users and is valued at 1.8 billion dollars. Recorded live in San Francisco.

Live Episode! Reddit: Alexis Ohanian & Steve Huffman

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Five years ago, the thought of renting a room from a complete stranger was ... a little creepy. But because of Airbnb, it's become norma Andrew Holder for NPR hide caption

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Airbnb: Joe Gebbia

We're hard at work planning our upcoming live show, so we bring you this favorite from the last year: Airbnb. A chance encounter with a stranger gave Joe Gebbia an idea to help pay his rent. That idea grew into a company that now has more rooms than the biggest hotel chain in the world. PLUS in our postscript "How You Built That," we check back with Michael Vennitti of TP Foam, a company that came up with a way to squelch the smell of trash.

Airbnb: Joe Gebbia

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