Former high school track star Tyler Haney became fascinated with technical athletic fabrics while studying at Parson’s School of Design. Her research led to the launch of Outdoor Voices, a line of athletic fashions that work beautifully on the street and in the gym.
Forbes has identified 29 other millennials under 30 who have made significant impacts in the competitive world of online retailing and e-commerce. Bill E Ford, Chief Executive Officer of General Atlantic, is an example of the forward thinking investors who supported these young businesspeople in their success. He was an early supporter of e-commerce initiatives and currently occupies a chair on Tory Burch’s Board of Directors.
Investors like Ford support Haney’s fashion line because her designs look good. They’re not simply wearable—they synthesize form and functionality. If numbers signal success, Outdoor Voices is clearly headed in the right direction, having secured $8.1 million in venture funding.
Identifying these 30 innovators under 30 required the input of successful judges from the e-commerce industry. Forbes selected fashion mogul Tory Burch; Jessica Alba, founder of The Honest Co.; Alexis Wilkis Wilson, co-founder of Gilt Groupe; and women’s clothing designer Carrie Hammer to judge.
These business mavens chose creative problem solvers like Megan Grassell, who founded Yellowberry, a company that provides lingerie for young girls, when she was 20-years-old. The idea came to her after a failed shopping trip with her 13-year-old sister. She identified the absence of age appropriate yet fashionable underwear for teens and tweens and then built a company to fill that space.
Sneakers are a powerful component of the e-commerce and fashion economy. Twin brothers Adam and Ryan Goldston were working in their dorm room at the University of Southern California when they founded Athletic Propulsion Labs. Their designs used new performance technology and high-end fashion styles to spin the brand toward success. Their fashion forward function footwear is now sold at Barneys and Saks, and the company has increased its revenues every year.
African-American hair care represents a multi-billion-dollar segment in the beauty industry. Candace Mitchell has revolutionized this niche with her mobile app Myvana, which acts as a concierge for hair care in the African-American community. Mitchell’s app matches stylists with clients and builds community by allowing users to share photos and hair care tips.
Dive deeper into the dramatic and inspiring stories of Forbes 30 Under 30 millennials innovating retail and e-commerce in the in-depth and interactive feature here.