How I Built This with Guy Raz-logo

How I Built This with Guy Raz

NPR

Guy Raz interviews the world’s best-known entrepreneurs to learn how they built their iconic brands. In each episode, founders reveal deep, intimate moments of doubt and failure, and share insights on their eventual success. How I Built This is a master-class on innovation, creativity, leadership and how to navigate challenges of all kinds. New episodes release on Mondays and Thursdays. Listen to How I Built This on the Wondery App or wherever you listen to your podcasts. You can listen early and ad-free on Wondery+. Join Wondery+ in the Wondery App, Apple Podcasts or Spotify. Start your free trial by visiting wondery.com/links/how-i-built-this now. Get your How I Built This merch at WonderyShop.com/HowIBuiltThis.

Location:

United States

Networks:

NPR

Description:

Guy Raz interviews the world’s best-known entrepreneurs to learn how they built their iconic brands. In each episode, founders reveal deep, intimate moments of doubt and failure, and share insights on their eventual success. How I Built This is a master-class on innovation, creativity, leadership and how to navigate challenges of all kinds. New episodes release on Mondays and Thursdays. Listen to How I Built This on the Wondery App or wherever you listen to your podcasts. You can listen early and ad-free on Wondery+. Join Wondery+ in the Wondery App, Apple Podcasts or Spotify. Start your free trial by visiting wondery.com/links/how-i-built-this now. Get your How I Built This merch at WonderyShop.com/HowIBuiltThis.

Language:

English


Episodes
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On athletic shoes: Olivier Bernhard and Caspar Coppetti

7/22/2024
Swiss triathlete and Ironman champion Olivier Bernhard was warned not to challenge the goliaths in the sneaker industry. But, inspired by the cloud-like sensation of a prototype running shoe made with strips of garden hose, Olivier set out to make a new sneaker for elite runners. He initially tried to pitch the design to “big guys” like Nike and Puma, but they weren’t interested. He soon partnered with two fellow Swiss with backgrounds in branding, and gradually, their highly technical shoe found its way to the feet of top runners, and eventually caught the eye of one of the best athletes in the world: Roger Federer. When he became an investor, On transcended running to become a full-fledged sneaker company that in 2023, netted $2 billion in sales. This episode was researched and produced by Katherine Sypher with music composed by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by Neva Grant. Our audio engineers were Robert Rodriguez and James Willetts. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:15:59

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Advice Line with Pete Maldonado of Chomps (April 2024)

7/18/2024
In case you missed it, we’re rerunning one of our first Advice Line episodes. Chomps co-founder and co-CEO Pete Maldonado joins Guy to answer questions from three early-stage entrepreneurs about growing their businesses. In this episode, we’ll meet Jennifer, a sourdough bagel slinger thinking about taking on 'big cream cheese.' Then Brandi, a tea shop owner hoping to bring her blends to big box retailers. And finally, Jake, an Alaska native trying to bring fresh wild salmon to Utah…even if he has to knock on every door north of Salt Lake. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And check out how Pete and his partner Rashid scaled the Chomps brand, from his first appearance on the show last year. This episode was produced by J.C. Howard with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Gilly Moon. You can follow HIBT on Twitter & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:51:44

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KAYAK: Paul English (2021)

7/15/2024
Paul English is a perpetual founder. Since high school, he's started 3 philanthropies and 8 companies—ranging from e-commerce, to gaming, to GetHuman, a site that helps users access human customer support. His best-known venture is probably KAYAK, a travel website launched in 2004 over two gin-and-tonics with co-founder Steve Hafner. Using a simple interface, KAYAK specialized in search; and it made partners out of potential rivals like Orbitz and Expedia by charging them a fee to send users to their sites. Eventually KAYAK became one of the most-searched "K" words on Google, and in 2012, it sold to Priceline for $1.8 billion. A few years later, Paul started yet another company, Lola.com—and says he plans to launch many more. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:10:34

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Advice Line with Tony Lamb of Kona Ice

7/11/2024
Kona Ice co-founder and CEO Tony Lamb joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders. Today we meet Dylan, who’s wondering how to tell if his small town Illinois candy store is a winning franchise idea. Then Zach, a Wall Street trader trying to bring a popular Asian craft to the U.S. And Jennifer, a designer in San Diego looking to promote her home decor brand on social media—without paying big bucks to influencers. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And be sure to listen to Kona Ice’s founding story on the show from November 2023. This episode was produced by Casey Herman with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Cena Loffredo. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:47:51

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Ouidad hair products: Ouidad Wise

7/8/2024
Ouidad Wise found the inspiration for her multi-million-dollar business right on top of her own head. She turned her passion for curly hair into a bustling New York City salon - and then a national hair care brand, splitting the responsibilities of running the business with her husband Peter. Juggling finances and family, the couple lived apart during the week for 16 years, all while raising two kids. Eventually, in 2018, after 40 years in the hair industry, Ouidad sold the brand, and now volunteers as a consultant for people launching their own salons. This episode was produced by Alex Cheng with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by Neva Grant with research help from Melia Agudelo. Our audio engineers were Robert Rodriguez and Kwesi Lee. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:04:23

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Advice Line with Brett Schulman of CAVA

7/4/2024
CAVA co-founder and CEO Brett Schulman joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders experiencing growing pains as they scale their companies. Today we meet Devin, who’s navigating imposter syndrome as his spiked root beer gets picked up by stores across Texas. Then Sophia, a Los Angeles mom exploring new sales channels for the accessories she designed to support children’s allergy needs. And Sean, who’s weighing whether outside investment is the best way to grow his Michigan-based coffee roastery into a national brand. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And be sure to listen to CAVA’s founding story as told by Brett and his co-founder Ted Xenohristos on the show in 2023. This episode was produced by Carla Esteves with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was James Willetts. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:48:46

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American Giant: Bayard Winthrop

7/1/2024
Bayard Winthrop founded American Giant in 2011 with the simple idea to sell clothes made entirely in America at a time when most apparel manufacturing had moved overseas. The first struggle was finding all the components—the cotton, the buttons, the zippers, the rivets; the next was finding people to actually do the work—the dying, the napping, the sewing and the finishing. Once Bayard did all that he ended up with his first product, a plain hooded sweatshirt. But soon after a viral article proclaimed it “the greatest hoodie ever made” Bayard faced a backlog of orders that took him almost three years to fulfill. Today, American Giant has expanded their line to include all the basics: t-shirts, denim, flannel, and accessories, still entirely produced in the U.S. This episode was produced by J.C. Howard, with music by Ramtin Arablouei Edited by Casey Herman, with research help from Katherine Sypher. You can follow HIBT on Twitter & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:21:45

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Advice Line with Mark Ramadan of Sir Kensington's

6/27/2024
Sir Kensington’s co-founder and former CEO Mark Ramadan joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they work through business challenges with three early-stage founders. Today we meet Pat, a physician assistant working to bring his solution for clogged sinks to major retailers. Then Lucas, a chef whose local quick service taco joint is fending off national competition. And Beth, a working mom whose baby products brand is caught in the "messy middle" between launch and mass scale. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And to hear the story of how Sir Kensington’s was founded, check out Mark's first appearance on the show in 2023. This episode was produced by Sam Paulson with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Cena Loffredo. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:50:47

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Spin Master/PAW Patrol: Ronnen Harary (2021)

6/24/2024
Ronnen Harary built a 4 billion dollar toy company without relying on market research or focus groups. Instead, he believed wholeheartedly in intuition: the "ah-hah" moment that comes from thinking like a 7-year old. Over a 25-year period, he and his Spin Master partners launched innumerable hit toys and amusements, including Air Hogs, Bakugan, and the smash hit franchise PAW Patrol. Spin Master's journey began in the mid-1990s, when Ronnen and his friend Anton Rabie began selling the Earth Buddy, a chia-pet-like novelty gift made of pantyhose, sawdust, and grass seed. Today, it's a publicly traded company with a portfolio that includes TV shows, video games, and toys ranging from puzzles to plush. This episode was produced by Casey Herman, with music by Ramtin Arablouei Edited by Neva Grant, with research help from Claire Murashima. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:06:03

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Advice Line with Sarah Kauss of S'well

6/20/2024
S’well founder Sarah Kauss joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders about positioning their products in competitive markets. Today we meet Chiara, a recent college grad who invented a protein-packed chickpea hot cereal. Then Jesús, who left his tech job to go all-in on a line of greeting cards inspired by his Latino heritage. And Adam, a former X Games gold medalist who launched a brand of razors for men who shave their legs. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And be sure to listen to S’well’s founding story as told by Sarah on the show in 2020. This episode was produced by Chris Maccini with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Neal Rauch. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:49:10

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The Cronut and Dominique Ansel Bakery: Dominique Ansel

6/17/2024
Dominique Ansel’s invention of the Cronut — an inspired liaison between croissant and donut — was supposed to be a one-time indulgence for Mother’s Day. But once word spread about the perfect hybrid pastry, his Manhattan bakery was overwhelmed by endless lines and Cronut scalpers. Dominique eventually learned to manage the hype and grow his business while maintaining his craft. Named the World’s Best Pastry Chef in 2017, he has found an entrepreneurial sweet spot in three brick-and-mortar locations and a mail-order business, which will overnight a Cronut to your door, sans the line, and scalpers be damned. This episode was produced by Carla Esteves with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by Neva Grant with research help from Katherine Sypher. Our audio engineer was Robert Rodriguez. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:03:23

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Advice Line with Randy Goldberg of Bombas

6/13/2024
Bombas co-founder and Chief Brand Officer Randy Goldberg joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders about building brands and reaching new communities. Today we meet Rivky, an Orthodox Jewish woman who's redefining modest clothing for plus-size women. Then Shyam, a rocket engineer who wants to introduce Americans to a popular South Asian tabletop game. And Änna, a boutique owner who wants to translate her hip brick-and-mortar vibes into the digital space. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And check out Bombas's founding story from Randy’s first appearance on the show in 2022. This episode was produced by Alex Cheng with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Cena Loffredo. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:49:03

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Dave’s Hot Chicken: Arman Oganesyan

6/10/2024
Dave’s Hot Chicken began as a tiny pop-up, selling spicy chicken tenders and fries from a tent in East Hollywood. Their homemade take on Nashville Hot Chicken was an overnight sensation in a city that had barely heard of it, and within days, co-founder Arman Oganesyan and his partners were working frantically to serve the long lines out front. Since launching seven years ago, the pop-up has grown into a chain of 200 stores, with franchises across the country, and a beloved rubber chicken mascot. This episode was produced by Sam Paulson with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by Neva Grant with research help from Katherine Sypher. Our audio engineers were Robert Rodriguez and Patrick Murray. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:06:13

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Advice Line with Fawn Weaver of Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey (April 2024)

6/6/2024
In case you missed it, we’re rerunning our Advice Line launch episode from a few weeks ago. Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey founder Fawn Weaver joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage entrepreneurs about telling their brand story. In this episode, we’ll meet Kevin, the owner of a coffee trailer and roastery who grew up on a coffee farm in Honduras. Then Elisabeth, whose jewelry company aims to make a difference in the developing world. And finally, Joanne, a home baker looking to turn her love of pecan pie into a full-time business. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And check out the origin story of Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey, told by Fawn on the show in 2021. This episode was produced by Chris Maccini with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Neal Rauch. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:37:24

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ECKO UNLTD and COMPLEX: Marc Ecko

6/3/2024
Growing up in the ‘80s in New Jersey, Marc Ecko loved hip hop, graffiti art, and painting t-shirts for friends. His passion soon bloomed into a full-on business: ECKO UNLTD, a streetwear brand known for its iconic rhino logo. By the 1990’s, the brand had become a cultural force, but not without its share of bad deals, daunting debt, and a close brush with bankruptcy. Eager to keep innovating, Marc launched COMPLEX, a media company hyper-focused on “convergence” culture: hip hop, fashion, sports and pop culture. Within a decade, COMPLEX had weathered the financial crisis, and emerged profitable. After being bought–and sold–by Buzzfeed, it was purchased by a video shopping company for over $100 million, and ECKO UNLTD just celebrated its 30th anniversary. This episode was researched and produced by Katherine Sypher with music composed by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by Neva Grant. Our audio engineers were Gilly Moon and Kwesi Lee. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:24:35

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Advice Line with Maureen Kelly of Tarte Cosmetics

5/30/2024
Tarte cosmetics founder and CEO Maureen Kelly joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders about their marketing strategies. Today we meet Kristina, who’s designed sweat-wicking underwear that's both functional and stylish. Then Ashley, who recently launched a line of chemical-free hair care products. And Marcelle, the owner of an international career coaching service. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And check out Tarte’s founding story from Maureen’s first appearance on the show in 2023. This episode was produced by Kerry Thompson with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Robert Rodriguez. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:47:03

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Concept2 Rowing Machines: Dick and Peter Dreissigacker

5/27/2024
Brothers Dick and Peter Dreissigacker used their experience as Olympic-level rowers to build a rowing machine that captured the sensation of being on the water. Initially made of bicycle parts in a Vermont barn, the machines had a limited market at first: mostly rowing clubs and schools that competed in the sport. But in the 2000’s, business began to take off when Greg Glassman, the founder of Crossfit, began putting the machines into his gyms. Today Concept2 sells rowing machines to thousands of gyms and teams around the world, plus rowers, stationary bikes and skiing machines for people who train at home. This episode was produced by J.C. Howard, with music by Ramtin Arablouei Edited by Neva Grant, with research help from Katherine Sypher. You can follow HIBT on Twitter & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:00:42

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Advice Line with Tom Rinks of Sun Bum

5/23/2024
Sun Bum co-founder Tom Rinks joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders about refining their brand identities. Today we meet Wendy, a former comedian whose sugar scrub takes the sticky-icky off your hands. Then Allyson, who went from producing reality television to trucker hats designed for women’s heads. And Zephyrus, an opera performer with a new way for kids to hear their favorite bedtime stories. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And be sure to listen to Sun Bum’s founding story as told by Tom on the show in 2023. This episode was produced by Casey Herman with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Cena Loffredo. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:43:27

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Therabody: Jason Wersland

5/20/2024
The Theragun was born out of a late-night experiment with a Makita jigsaw, by a man searching desperately for pain relief in his arm. Jason Wersland was studying to become a chiropractor when he got injured in a motorcycle accident. While casting about for solutions, he discovered that the percussive massage from his jury-rigged power tool helped ease his pain and increase range of motion. Jason soon discovered the device worked on his patients, so he MacGyvered hundreds more jigsaws, initially using fence posts and cat toys as add-ons. Over time, with endorsements from top athletes and celebrities, Jason grew his business into Therabody, a wellness brand with revenue in the hundred of millions of dollars. This episode was produced by Chris Maccini with music by Ramtin Arablouei. Edited by Neva Grant, with research from Melia Agudelo. Our audio engineers were Gilly Moon and Robert Rodriguez. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram, and email us at hibt@id.wondery.com. And sign up for Guy’s free newsletter at guyraz.com See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:01:11:08

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Advice Line with Andrew Abraham of Orgain

5/16/2024
Orgain founder and CEO Andrew Abraham joins Guy on the Advice Line, where they answer questions from three early-stage founders about strategically positioning their products. Today we meet Brynn, who’s tackling cavities and dental anxiety with an electric flosser. Then Turner, a radiologist mixing up craft cocktails for the golf course. And Catherine, whose pasta sauces and dressings help ease the weeknight dinner juggle. If you’d like to be featured on a future Advice Line episode, leave us a one minute message that tells us about your business and a specific question you’d like answered. Send a voice memo to hibt@id.wondery.com or call 1-800-433-1298. And check out Orgain’s founding story from Andrew’s first appearance on the show in 2023. This episode was produced by Carla Esteves with music by Ramtin Arablouei. It was edited by John Isabella. Our audio engineer was Cena Loffredo. You can follow HIBT on X & Instagram and sign up for Guy's free newsletter at guyraz.com. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Duration:00:51:48