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How Whitney Wolfe Herd Mastered Bumble’s Branding

Her Austin HQ is a temple to all things Bumble. In collaboration with Bumble.

How Whitney Wolfe Herd Mastered Bumble’s Branding

Remember that time we visited Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe Herd at her brand-spankin-new Austin HQ, and we gave you a tiny sneak peek of the 1,000-percent customized space? We promised a more in-depth look, and ta-da! Here it is.

If you think housing your groundbreaking tech company (in case you haven’t heard, the app that revolutionized online dating to empower women just recently also launched a business networking arm, Bumble Bizz, and an extension for people just looking to make friends, Bumble BFF) in Austin, Texas, instead of, say, Silicon Valley is unheard of, that choice was deliberate. “I really believe that there’s something to be said for race horses wearing blinders. You can’t win a race if you don’t keep your blinders on. If you’re looking over your shoulder asking, ‘What are they doing?’ You’re going to fall, and you’re going to lose. [Being in Austin,] we have our blinders on, and we’re not affected by outside opinions or any of that stuff.”

In fact, every single aspect of the office space is deliberate. From Wolfe Herd’s custom-built hive bookcase in her Bumble-yellow office to the light switches, every inch of the building is intended to be friendly, upbeat, and to encourage creativity and collaboration. “It’s always enjoyable to restore a structure to its original roots, especially one with elements dating back to 1960s architectural trends,” said Mark Odom, founder and principal of Mark Odom Studio. “My team and I were inspired to build on that foundation while making the Bumble team’s vision of a lifestyle-focused company headquarters come to life. The Hive will surely live on in Austin infamy as one of the most stylish, vibrant and collaborative office spaces in the city.”

Take a tour and read about how Wolfe Herd created an empowering office culture below.

“Austin was kind of an accidental place to launch. Everything takes a backseat when you’re starting a company. Where you land is where you land. But my first hires—they were all based here. It just took flight. We were originally working out of my first hire’s parents’ house in their spare bedroom, and then we moved into a tiny WeWork. The problem was, our company was kind of well-known by then. We didn’t have the budget to be a big company, but people knew about us. So we were having the BBC come to the WeWork, and we were having all of these people come shoot it. I unfortunately, for better or for worse, ended up in the media the summer before. It was this surreal time because I was a nobody, but the internet made me this topic of conversation, if that makes sense, but I was like some random nobody. We were in over our skis, but we didn’t really have the skis to support that.”
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