The Business of Being Shaun White [exclusive video]

My cover story on Shaun White was bound to take one of two angles. White either has a super shrewd manager directing his business decisions while he floats in his own jet stream—a strong possibility considering the world of star athletes as check cashing product pushers. Or less likely, the 22-year old skate and snowboard phenom runs his own show and employs what I imagined to be an entourage with a brain.

Could White be the architect of the diverse portfolio of companies his brand is aligned with—from HP to Burton to Target? Could he be the one who leads his team and makes the final call when answering the tempting come-on of bogus, yet lucrative partnerships? Given the folly of youth and corporate America’s fat checkbook, it didn’t seem as though a story on Shaun White As Identity Auteur had much of a chance. To the surprise of many around our office, and most likely beyond, it turned out to be true.

People familiar with White’s otherworldly talent on a board know he can manage complex terrain with grace and style. In this exclusive video for Fast Company, White redefines the meaning of boardroom antics (by skating on one about 40 seconds into this video) and brings a fresh dose of flash and exuberance to an otherwise bleak day on Wall Street.

Read the complete cover story: Shaun White’s Business is Red Hot MB