Two years ago, 26-year-old publishing heir Ben Goldhirsh withdrew $2.5 million from his trust fund and exuberantly started Good, which was going to change the world by donating subscription revenues to charity, employing Al Gore's kid and writing all sorts of obnoxiously altruistic stories. Goldhirsh, who threatened to sink another $10 million into the venture over the following five years, was all too easy to mock as a spoiled vanity publisher. And, lo, he still is! Because Goldhirsh is so "stressed out" about actually making any money that he's brought in a grownup to, you know, run his business:
“I got scared,” Mr. Goldhirsh told The Observer. “I personally got scared and I personally got stressed out about my ability to execute and really actualize the potential of the whole thing. And that for me wasn’t fun at all.” (Mr. Goldhirsh remains chairman of the company.)
The new CEO is Jonathan Grenblatt, 37, who has an MBA and sold the "Ethos" bottled water company to Starbucks for $8 million. He has moved to "really actualize the potential" of Good by signing on such "Good" advertisers as British Petroleum and diversifying the magazine into Web video.
Goldhirsh is fighting to keep what he called the company's "fail hard, fuck it all, let’s just do it" spirit, but he's also still ending his conversations with "peace, brotha."