Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ford Names as One of the World's Most Innovative Companies

Fast Company’s annual Most Innovative Companies issue honors leading businesses, including Apple, Amazon, Google and Target along with such rising newcomers as Square, Fab and Tumblr. Ford Motor Company is the only full-line automaker named to the 2013 list. Nike ranks No. 1 following the release of two major innovations, FuelBand and Flyknit technology.

Fast Company editors highlighted an array of recent efforts by Ford, including the opening of a Silicon Valley Lab in Palo Alto, Calif. in June 2012 where Ford engineers can collaborate with some of the best and brightest technology minds.

Among the innovative features already available in Ford vehicles, the award-winning SYNC® connectivity system enables drivers to stay connected with the latest mobile technology using voice commands so that hands can stay on the wheel and eyes on the road. The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion offers one of the industry’s most complete suites of advanced driver assist systems, including adaptive cruise control and the Lane Keeping System all in an affordable midsize family sedan. Ford researchers are also hard at work on future systems including a driver workload estimator to help drivers manage stressful situations on the road.

The Most Innovative Companies is Fast Company’s most significant, high-profile editorial effort of the year. The editorial team spends months gathering and sifting data to identify those enterprises that exemplify the best in business from across the economy and around the world. The end result is a package that dares to be different, emphasizing not just revenue growth and profit margins but also progressive business models and an ethos of creativity. This year’s honorees include major brands like Samsung and Coca-Cola, creative upstarts like Nasty Gal and Uber, and social disruptors like Coursera and D-Rev. Internationally Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies package spans the globe celebrating such companies as Kenya’s Safaricom (No. 9), Israel’s SodaStream (No. 23), Russia’s Oktogo online travel service (No. 35) and China’s Landwasher (No. 38).

In addition to the Top 50, Fast Company also ranks the Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in 10 categories, including Big Data, Entertainment, Finance, and Food — all of which are featured in the print edition and on Additional Top 10 lists will continue to be rolled out online and through social channels in the weeks to come. Special online-only coverage: The Most Innovative Moments in Business, from Apple to Starbucks, Airbnb to Disney.

Notable on this year’s list: the absence of social media giants Facebook and Twitter. “Neither produced innovations worth celebrating,” the magazine explains in an accompanying article. “In the history of our list, fewer than one-third of the companies return from one year to the next. This year, only seven are consecutive honorees, an indication of how more companies in more corners of the world are innovating to seek a competitive edge, with the stakes only getting higher.”

Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies issue (March 2013) is on newsstands beginning Feb. 19 and available online at as well as in app form via iTunes.

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