Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Court of Appeals rules Texas can ban life-saving abortions, Sherrell Parker becomes Philadelphia's first female mayor, and Bumble's Whitney Wolfe Herd moves from CEO to chair He shared his best business advice. Have a wonderful Thursday!
– Buildings like Bumble. This week, Whitney Wolfe Herd officially resigned as CEO of Bumble. She founded Bumble, the company's flagship dating app, nearly a decade ago. On January 2, Wolfe Herd became chairman of the company's board, and former Slack chief executive Lidiane Jones took over as CEO.
The high-profile leadership change is a time of reflection for Wolfe Herd, who wrote on Instagram: “I never asked for this.”[s] “stop growth'' and take on board roles.
Her reflections began earlier this week. Late last year, she spoke with Wolf Herd, who debuted the class on her education platform MasterClass. Ten years into her journey as the founder and CEO of her startup, she wanted to share her business lessons with those who have followed her own career.
“On paper, I really shouldn’t be here today,” she told me. “I want to show anyone that anything is possible if you think differently and believe in yourself.”
Wolfe Herd's Masterclass explores how she founded Bumble after being fired from rival dating app Tinder and suing her former employer for sexual harassment. (Her case was solved.) She describes the steps she took to figure out what to do next.
The first action was to identify the “big problem”. For Wolfe Herd, it was toxicity online and in relationships. She then came up with Bumble's signature feature of women being “first to act” and defined the white space her startup could work within that problem. She sought to identify an underserved audience, in this case women in the dating market, and figure out what they wanted and didn't want in their love lives. Wolfe Herd tells Masterclass viewers that an idea “doesn't have to be complicated” to be successful. It has to be authentic and inherit their DNA.
But even though Wolfe Herd is no longer CEO, he doesn't just take credit for the business he built. “I don’t think it’s all about me,” she told me. “This is a trace of everyone who came here and touched it in their own way. Even if it was the person who delivered the package and said every word, it could change the directory of the company. I have left my mark, but it is collective.”
Since Bumble's birth story, the company has gone through many iterations. The biggest changes came in 2019, when Blackstone acquired a majority stake in the business and elevated Wolf Herd to CEO of Bumble's parent company, and in 2021, Wolf Herd became the youngest woman to go public. I woke up when Since then, Bumble's stock has fallen about 80% in a tough market for the online dating industry.
Wolfe Herd encourages aspiring founders to always ask big questions, just as she did when figuring out how to get through each stage of a business. “If something isn't changing, if something isn't growing, it's dying,” she says. “We never want to be in a stagnant place.”
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