Fast Company May 2018

Fast Company is the world’s leading progressive business media brand, with a unique editorial focus on innovation in technology, leadership, world changing ideas, and design. Written for, by, and about the most progressive business leaders, Fast Company inspires readers to think beyond traditional boundaries, lead conversations, and create the future of business.

United States
Mansueto Ventures LLC
6 Issues

in this issue

3 min
it all starts with a good idea

Faced with a housing shortage of crisis proportions, Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles, decided not to wait for the market to sort things out. Not that the market seems up to the job, anyway: Nearly a third of L.A. residents already spend more than half their income on rent. Garcetti’s idea: to use the powers of his office to dramatically increase the city’s housing stock, by building, among other things, the ingenious homes known as accessory dwelling units. ADUs are free-standing bungalows that have roughly the same square footage as two-bedroom apartments, and that fit—here’s the mind-bending part—into existing backyards. Neither banks nor builders nor zoning regulators were ready for ADUs, but Garcetti jawboned the former and politicked the latter into supporting them. Now the affordable little homelets…

2 min
espn’s new power hitter

Last year, Fox Sports 1’s quirky show Garbage Time With Katie Nolan came to an abrupt end when the network put it on hiatus amid executive leadership changes. Nolan has no regrets: The freewheeling weekly broadcast that ran for three seasons allowed her to ask guests such as Kevin Durant about his underwear, as well as call out the NFL for its handling of domestic assault charges against former Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy. She just wishes she’d been aware in advance that the Super Bowl 2017 show would be the last. “There would have been fireworks,” she says. “And puppies.” In October 2017, she found greener Astroturf at ESPN, where she’s helping to boost the network’s digital presence as it expands beyond linear media and game recaps. Nolan’s new…

4 min
don’t count instacart out just yet

Instacart Amazon’s announcement last June of its plan to buy Whole Foods served as a wake-up call to grocers that the threat of e-commerce could no longer be ignored. And grocery-delivery startup Instacart, known for its same-day delivery from big-box supermarkets, was ready to help. In February, the company closed a $200 million funding round, which it will use to beef up its digital logistics tools, double the size of its corporate team, and help bring more grocers—both big and small—onto its platform. “This industry has been waiting for a catalyst and a change moment for a long time,” says Instacart’s chief business officer, Nilam Ganenthiran. “We’re very thankful to the folks up in Seattle for helping drive [our growth].” Since Amazon’s big buy, Instacart has signed on large grocers such as…

2 min
an athleisure empire gets physical

Bandier High-end activewear retailer Bandier debuted its first in-house apparel brand with the launch, in January, of a brightly hued workout-basics collection called We Over Me. Sold on Bandier’s site and through its brick-and-mortar stores, as well as via luxury e-tailer Net-a-Porter, We Over Me signals the company’s readiness to take advantage of its athleisure expertise to create its own products. “[We have] our finger on the pulse of everything that’s happening from a fabric and fit perspective,” says Bandier CEO Neil Boyarsky. “We have insight into what works.” With its color-block patterns and soft, durable fabrics, We Over Me’s 14-piece collection bears a resemblance to other athleisure lines. Competitor Outdoor Voices, for one, has complained that the designs are “nearly exact copies” of its own styles. But Bandier’s commitment to inclusive…

2 min
the recommender

LEFF AMSTERDAM TUBE AUDIO $119 “This portable speaker sounds great, but what won me over is its functional beauty. It’s a small, Bluetooth-enabled copper cylinder that gets extra credit for announcing, ‘Your device is connected,’ in a heavy Dutch accent. Cracks me up every time.” Bruce Vaughn CEO, Dreamscape Immersive THE SHHHOWERCAP $43 “This waterproof, antibacterial, and noise-reducing take on the shower cap totally works, but I really love it because, seriously, who was creative enough to reinvent the shower cap?” Gina Bianchini CEO, Mighty Networks FIRE STONE & ROBERTSON TX WHISKEY $40 for 750 mL “Fort Worth, Texas–based distillery Firestone & Robertson’s blended whiskey tastes of honey butter and banana. Plus, the bottle caps are handmade from local repurposed leather.” Bruce Schultz CEO, Boardroom Salon for Men BOND HANDWRITTEN NOTES From $3.50 “My handwriting is atrocious. I never have stamps. But I…

10 min
nike has a new digital playbook—and it starts with sneakerheads

On a recent Friday morning, a select group of Nike’s biggest fans got an alert. A new, limited-edition version of the brand’s Cortez running shoe—an old-school nylon sneaker originally released in 1972—was about to drop. The release was happening during the NBA All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles, and the shoes—red, white, and black, with the words DON’T TRIP emblazoned across the laces—were made in partnership with rapper Kendrick Lamar, a local legend. Customers received the notification through an app called Snkrs, which Nike has been refining over the past year as a way of connecting superfans with desirable pairs of, you know, sneakers. It is distinct from the regular Nike app, where you go to get a pair of performance shoes. Snkrs sticks to the kinds of limited-edition runs—interesting colorways, unusual…