"What is Hooli? Excellent question. Hooli isn't just another high tech company. Hooli isn't just about software. Hooli...Hooli is about people. Hooli is about innovative technology that makes a difference, transforming the world as we know it. Making the world a better place, through minimal message oriented transport layers. I firmly believe we can only achieve greatness if first we achieve goodness."
―Gavin Belson
Minimum Viable Product is the series premiere episode of the HBO series Silicon Valley. It originally aired on April 6, 2014.


Richard's compression algorithm ignites a bidding war between mega-rich tech funding giants Gavin Belson and Peter Gregory. He is forced to choose between a $10 million outright buyout from Belson and a $200,000 deal with Gregory (Belson's rival) which would allow the Hacker Hostel guys to retain 95% of the company - with the hopes that they'll be able to expand its worth beyond Belson's $10 million price tag.


Kid Rock plays to an unenthusiastic crowd at a party in Silicon Valley where four nerds -- Richard, Big Head, Dinesh, and Gilfoyle -- meander around in awe of a celebration for a company acquired by Google for $200 million. Gilfoyle eats liquid shrimp made by Wylie Dufresne that costs $200 a quart. The guys’ landlord at the Hacker Hostel, Erlich, appears and tells them they need to network with the dozens of tech power-players around them.

At the Hacker Hostel, Erlich talks to Richard about his project, Pied Piper, which he originally pitched as “the Google of music.” Erlich says he needs to get the project moving, like Big Head has done with NipAlert. Later, while on the bus to their day jobs at Hooli, Big Head and Richard watch a video of the company’s chief innovation officer Gavin Belson talking about Hooli achieving greatness through goodness. At Hooli, a couple of “brogrammers” tell Richard they’ll help him with Pied Piper, but it turns out they’re just messing with him.

Richard and Big Head listen to tech investor Peter Gregory as he gives a Ted Talks presentation about how college has become a “cruel joke on the poor and middle class.” Afterward, Richard approaches Peter to pitch Pied Piper, and his assistant Monica tells him, rather unconvincingly, that she’ll look it up as Peter drives away in his mini car. 

At Hooli, the brogrammers are stunned at how lossless the compression is on Pied Piper. The news gets back to Gavin Belson, who’s intrigued and sets up a meeting with Richard. Peter Gregory is also interested in Richard’s algorithm. A bidding war starts -- Gavin Belson ultimately offers $10 million, while Peter Gregory goes in a different direction and offers Richard $200,000 for five percent of Pied Piper. After a panic attack -- and an impassioned pitch from Monica -- Richard chooses to go with Peter’s offer and build Pied Piper with the help of Big Head, Dinesh, Gilfoyle, and, of course, Erlich.[1]


Main cast

Supporting cast

  • Jill E. Alexander as Patrice
  • Jack Foley as Pitcher
  • Charan Prabhakar as Javeed
  • Rogelio T. Ramos as Another Executive
  • Bill Wiff as Heckler
  • Herschel Boone as Herschel
  • Jared Cohen as Jared
  • Andrew Daly as Doctor
  • Aly Mawji as Aly Dutta
  • Scott Prendergast as Scott
  • Eric Schmidt as Himself
  • Brian Tichnell as Jason
  • Jessica Wagner-Cowan as Artist
  • Bernard White as Spiritual Advisor
  • Kid Rock as Himself
  • Matt Ross as Gavin Belson

Memorable Quotes

[First lines]

  • Kid Rock: Somebody make some motherfucking noise in here! [silence] Fuck these people.
  • Erlich: What do you got?
    Pitcher: Okay, here it is. Bit Soup, like alphabet soup but ones and zeros instead of the letters. Cause binary... Binary is ones and zeros.
    Erlich: I know what binary is. Jesus Christ! I memorized the hexadecimal times tables when I was 14 writing machine code, okay? Ask me what 9 times F is. It's fleventy-five. I don't need you telling me what binary is, just like I don't need you thinking about soup or taking pictures of it. I need you thinking about apps, software and websites. This is Silicon Valley, not... [uses his phone] Paris, Texas... which is where Campbell's Soup is
  • Dinesh: What the hell are you eating? 
    Gilfoyle: Liquid shrimp. It's 200 dollars a quart. Wylie Dufresne made it.
    Dinesh: How does it taste?
    Gilfoyle: Like how I would imagine cum tastes.
  • Richard: It's amazing how the men and women at these things always separate like this.
    Dinesh: Yeah, every party in Silicon Valley ends up like a hasidic wedding.
  • Erlich: Everyone involved in the music industry is either stealing it or sharing it. They're all a bunch of assholes, especially Radiohead.
  • Gavin: It's weird. They always travel in groups of five. These programmers, there's always a tall, skinny white guy; a short, skinny Asian guy; fat guy with a ponytail; some guy with crazy facial hair; and then an East Indian guy. It's like they trade guys until they all have the right group.
  • Gilfoyle: [Sticks his middle finger up at Dinesh] How does this translate into Farsi?
    Dinesh: That's not the language I speak.
  • Erlich: Richard, if you want to live here, you've got to deliver. I can't have dead weight at my incubator, OK? Either that, or show some promise for fuck's sake. Like NipAlert, Big Head's app. It gives you the location of a woman with erect nipples. Now, that's something people want.
  • Richard(Watching Peter Gregory drive away in a tiny car) That is a narrow car.
    Big Head: Fucking billionaires!
  • Monica: Hi, Monica. I work with Peter Gregory. We met outside the TED...
    Richard: Yeah, I remember you. What how'd you know I was here?
    Monica: Peter Gregory is invested in a company that uses GPS in phones to track people.
    Richard: That's creepy.
    Monica: You don't know the half of it. And neither does Congress.
  • Erlich: I am the founder of Aviato. And I own a very small percentage of Grindr. It's a men to men dating site where you can find other men within 10 miles of you interested in having sexual intercourse in a public restroom.
    Jared: [explaining] In the homosexual community there's sometimes anonymous...
    Gavin: I know what Grindr is. I have gay friends.
  • Erlich: When I sold my company, Aviato, I wanted to give back. That's why I started this place, to do something big. To make a difference. You know, like Steve.
    Richard: Uh, Jobs or Wozniak? [Erlich looks at him] Steve Jobs or Steve...
    Erlich: Oh, I heard you.
    Richard: Which one
    Erlich: Jobs.
    Richard: I mean, Jobs was a poser. He didn't even write code.


  • In the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards (2014) Mike Judge was nominated for "Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series" for this episode, but lost to Gail Mancuso for Modern Family.
  • According to the DVD commentary, T.J. Miller adlibbed the line, "They're all a bunch of assholes, especially Radiohead."

Image Gallery


Silicon Valley Season 1: Episode 1 Clip #1

Silicon Valley S1X01 Promo

Silicon Valley S1X01 Promo

Silicon Valley Season 1: Episode 1 Clip #2

Silicon Valley S1X01 Clip 2

Silicon Valley S1X01 Clip 2


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