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Jacknife at The Fast Company Innovation Festival

Posted in journal

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Fast Company is to an entrepreneur in the same way a compass is to an explorer. For years we’ve been shaping our views on ‘what’s next?’ by following every page of every issue and taking notes on critical insights and information from various industries.


Imagine how excited we were when in July when Fast Company referred to Jacknife as being one of the most ‘innovative minds in design’. We were humbled, flattered, and more importantly, appreciative that our company, staff, and partners were recognized for our expanding breadth of integrated work. Though the story that was published on their website, Fast Company recognized our strong connection and desire to provide solutions that deliver tremendous business value. This recognition lead to our Partner and CEO, Marawan El-Asfahani to be invited to speak at their 25th Anniversary Innovation Festival in NYC during November 9 – 13, 2015. We are honoured to be given the opportunity to speak on the same roster as Angela Ahrendts from Apple, Gwyneth Paltrow from Goop, Steve Aoki, Bill Nye, The Rock and many more.

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Speaking to a few hundred people, Marawan, along with his panel which included Scott Norton, Cofounder of Sir Kensington’s and ZeShan Malik of Melee Media, discussed how good design informs good business. Marawan spoke of Jacknife’s ability to create thoughtfully designed goods and services for clients, which in turn positively influence and launch their businesses into new sectors. To truly power his message home, Marawan illustrated the value of design using examples from recent Jacknife work such as the rebranding of both Second Cup and Georgian Partners, the strategy developed for Solomon, and the product designs that were created for Thule.

marawan on stage

While the event is now over and Fast Company has moved onto its next issue, we can already see the ripple affects that the event had on our business practice and the affect we had on the Fast Co. community. Marawan’s talk being highlighted as one of the ‘38 Great moments from Fast Co.’s First Ever Innovation Festival’ definitely has and is going to open up new opportunities for us.

Upon his arrival back in the studio Marawan spoke to us about how context is more important than content within the creative industry, how The Rock is able to stay authentic to his brand by being in charge of his own social media following, and how design can be seen as a currency that’s value goes up and down.

We hope that Marawan’s three major insights taken from Fast Company’s Innovation Summit aid us in staying innovative and continue to allow us to shape the way others think about design and business.

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