Have you had an eventful year so far? Whitney Wolfe Herd certainly has. She’s made headlines throughout 2018, in fact. Her stewardship of Bumble, a location-based dating, networking, and social app, has been hailed for its boldness and its strong feminist values.
Bumble debuted in 2014, and the company is based in Austin. It has 34 million members, and this app is notable in that it allows women to make the first swipes and to begin conversations with other users.
In recent months, Whitney Wolfe Herd has become a member of the board of directors of a highly influential Hollywood production studio. She’s joined forces with an NBA team. On top of that, Whitney Wolfe Herd — who’s not yet 30 years old — has been at the forefront of cultural conversations about guns and online privacy. Is there any wonder why the magazine Fortune named her to its annual “40 Under 40” list of power players?
Whitney Wolfe Herd is a native of Salt Lake City, and she graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas with a degree in international relations. In the end, though, she would decide not to go into politics or diplomacy. Her entrepreneurial instincts were just too strong.
In fact, Whitney Wolfe Herd had her own business when she was just 19. She sold tote bags, and she donated proceeds to the people in Texas who were harmed by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Now, one by one, let’s take a look at Whitney Wolfe Herd’s impactful moves and decisions this year.
Banning Guns From Bumble Profile Pictures
In the past, some Bumble members have held guns in their profile pictures, usually to display an interest in hunting or shooting sports. However, images of firearms will no longer be permitted in those photos. If Bumble’s moderators see any such weapons in user profiles, those photos will be taken off the app. What’s the reason for this new rule? Whitney Wolfe Herd wants to create a digital environment in which everyone can feel safe and at ease.
Be aware that this rule does not apply to integrated Instagram feeds or to pictures of on-duty law enforcement officers and members of the armed forces. In addition, gun sports enthusiasts may be allowed to appeal the decision to have their pictures removed.
Sponsoring the Los Angeles Clippers
In March, the L.A. Clippers and Bumble revealed that they have entered into a marketing partnership. As a result of this agreement, the Clippers’ uniforms will show off the Bumble logo. Also, the two organizations will collaborate on community projects that seek to empower girls and women.
It makes sense that a feminist brand like Bumble would do business with the Clippers. After all, its management team includes more women than any other NBA franchise. Further, Gillian Zucker, the president of the Clippers, is currently the only female president of an NBA team.
Breaking Up With Facebook
Originally, you needed a Facebook account in order to have a Bumble account. You’d log into Bumble via Facebook. As of April 2018, though, that’s no longer the case. Bumble changed this rule to accommodate people who’ve deleted their Facebook accounts. You can now use your phone number to log into Bumble instead.
Why did Whitney Wolfe Herd and her team make this change? Mainly, they wanted to show that they were sensitive to those who are concerned about their digital privacy. On top of that, they didn’t want people to think that, as managers of a third party app, they were mining Facebook data for business purposes. Of course, after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, these issues are on many people’s minds.
Not Letting Match Group Buy Bumble
Match Group is a company that owns a number of dating apps and websites, including Tinder. Whitney Wolfe Herd actually co-founded Tinder, and she served as its vice president of marketing. In 2014, however, she left the company and sued it for sexual harassment.
In 2017, Match Group offered to purchase Bumble for $450 million. Bumble promptly refused the proposal. Then, in March 2018, Match Group sued Bumble for patent infringement, claiming that Bumble too closely resembles Tinder in its functionality and overall appearance. Bumble countered by calling the lawsuit a form of retaliation for rebuffing Match Group’s buyout attempt.
These issues are ongoing. One thing is clear, though: Whitney Wolfe Herd will skillfully and forcefully defend her brand from anyone who would try to damage it.
Joining the Board of Imagine Entertainment
To close here on a happy note, Whitney Wolfe Herd joined the board of one of the movie industry’s most accomplished production companies. Director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer are the founders of Imagine Entertainment and the chairmen of its board. Right now, Whitney Wolfe Herd is the only woman on this board.
In July, when Brian and Ron made this announcement, Brian hailed Whitney Wolfe Herd as a visionary and a brilliant entrepreneur.
Thank you! I’m a big believer in the power of storytelling — and in women having a seat at the table. https://t.co/prykzRyS16
— Whitney Wolfe Herd (@WhitWolfeHerd) July 12, 2018
It’s an exciting time to be a part of the Imagine Entertainment team. That’s because the company is involved in so many different projects at the moment. It’s producing documentaries, making comedy shows for cable networks, and greenlighting a wide array of animated and live-action films, among other show business ventures.
With all of these developments in 2018, Bumble fans should be eager to see what Whitney Wolfe Herd will do in 2019!
Read the full article here: http://fortune.com/40-under-40/whitney-wolfe-herd-9/