You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. If you struggle to uplevel your average and are not in a tech hotspot, here are the best podcasts to supplement your learnings.
And to keep things interesting we actually rate the podcasts. Mass lists are messy, boring and not helpful. Here are the best startup podcasts by category. Feel free to debate the order and suggest new podcasts below.
Startup and Tech Podcasts
Super angel Jason Calacanis is one of the top tech investors of all time with 6 unicorns investments including Uber, Thumbtack and Wealthfront. With over 750 episodes, TWIST is the top startup podcast on our list. Each week Jason interviews top tech influencers, entrepreneurs and investors to share the latest in startup tech news and breakdown the strategies and insights that have made these folks so successful.
It is the show about acquisitions and IPOs from two guys who know their way around startups. Ben Gilbert of Pioneer Square Labs and David Rosenthal of Madrona Ventures breakdown the historic mergers and acquisitions in a delightfully insightful way, sharing opinions, failures, successes and interesting tidbits that VCs, angel investors and startup founders love. Learn from the past to build a better future.
Reid Hoffman is one of the top tech entrepreneurs of our time, with massive hits Paypal and LinkedIn under his belt and investments in dozens of other top companies. On Masters of Scale he interviews all the rest of the best. Reid breaks down blitz-scaling and talks with industry titans like Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, Brian Cheksy of Airbnb, Reid Hastings of Netflix and many many more to tease out the struggles and strategies of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs.NOTE: Masters of Scale would rank higher if there were more episodes. Currently there is only one season complete.
Leo Laporte is the host of the prolific TWIT podcast and video series. Each week Leo and a panel of industry experts riff on the the latest tech news, trends and more to create an impactful hour plus episode on our industry. TWIT is similar to ThisWeekInStartups but has less of a focus on startups and entrepreneurs and more on the industry as a whole.
Hosts Ben Thompson of Stratechery and James Alworth chat every week on a big topic impacting the tech industry. Many episodes center around Ben Thompson’s aggregation theory which explains the monopolies of today and Facebook, Google and Amazon’s all-powerful and ever increasing holds on consumers. Very intellectual and interesting and definitely recommended.
Angel Investing Podcasts
NYC is one of the top startup scenes worldwide. Dave Lerner, a professor of entrepreneurship and prolific angel investor interviews the angel investors and VCs that make up NYC’s startup tech scene. The show is solid, the guests are great and the companies are killing it. Let’s hear it for New York.
Jason Calacanis plays off the success of TWIST and recently launched a brand new podcast on all things angel investing. His guests like top super angels Gil Penchina, Esther Dyson and Cyan Bannister share strategies that got them to where they are today. They talk portfolios, big misses, investment philosophies and more.NOTE: Angel would rank higher if it has more history but do date there are under 7 episodes live.
No list on early stage angel investing would be complete without our very own Syndicate podcast. The Syndicate features the best and brightest early stage investors and VCs to take founders and funders behind the veil of early stage investing. We interview accelerator leads, top Angellist syndicates, tech influencers and anyone with insights and experience to help our community of angels and VCs get a competitive advantage creating wealth to startup tech investing.
Sal Daler is Mr. Boston. He’s an experienced angel investor looking to learn everything there is to know about successful startups. He interviews Boston’s top angel investors and influencers to share an in-depth look into the Boston startup ecosystem and what makes it shine.
Nick Moran built a top tier Angellist syndicate and early stage IoT fund thanks to his excellent angel and VC podcast the Full Ratchet. The show is dedicated to demystifying early stage tech investing and features interviews with some of the industry's best.
Venture Capital Podcasts
The best VC run podcast to date is Balderton’s series on the European tech scene. Each week they interview top startups, investors and accelerator groups to showcase the best of the best European ecosystems, investors and companies. They have done numerous deep dives on European startup hubs and are always on my list.
2. 20 Minute VC
Harry Stebbings is a 20 year old venture capitalist. He’s interviewed hundreds of VCs, learning the tricks of the trade and sharing the best secrets, tips and challenges the best of the best venture capitalists all struggle with. His podcast is insightful and focused and arguably the best purely VC focused podcast around.NOTE: The Twenty Minute VC would rank higher if the shows were not so systematized. Every episode has the same look, feel and rapid fire questions which can make it a bit repetitive.
Kleiner Perkins are one of the best performing VCs of all time and put out a pretty good podcast. Ventured host Randy Komisar interviews top founders and fellow investors and outlines Kleiner’s investment philosophies and discusses the dynamics when startups, founders and capital collide.
Andressen Horowitz has a solid podcast series that covers everything in the tech industry. From hallway chats with Marc Andressen and Ben Horowitz, to industry experts on everything from climate change to politics and network effects to downloads, the firm puts out solid podcasts with smart folks. The biggest problem is focus in my book, if you want strictly VC/investment focus, a16z isn’t for you.
Reid Hoffman and Greylock are back in action packed podcast delivering tons of valuable interviews and insights into VC, investing and building bigger, better companies. Greymatter appears to have stop publishing podcasts but the back catalog is top notch and recommend for founders and VCs alike.
In no particular order, here are the best of the rest: