Outside Inc. Acquires Fastest Known Time Sports Database

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Outside Inc., the Boulder, Colorado-based parent company of Outside Business Journal, announced its acquisition of Fastest Known Time (FKT), an online database of speed records in the sports of running, hiking and of stamina.

FKT, which from 2020 to 2022 has seen substantial growth on its platform (fueled in part by pandemic-related race cancellations), builds on several mapping and database assets already in the Outside portfolio, including Gaia GPS and Trailforks. The company plans to use these assets cross-functionally, leveraging Gaia’s capabilities to improve the accuracy of the current FKT platform.

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“At Outside, we are committed to inspiring people to get outside and fuel their active lifestyles,” said Robin Thurtson, CEO of Outside. “By adding the fastest known weather to the outdoor ecosystem and integrating our advanced mapping technologies into the platform, our goal is to continue to inspire outdoor enthusiasts to push themselves to new heights.”

In a newsletter to its members sent this week, the FKT team wrote: “[Our community] will be very happy to know that Outside brings an enormous amount of knowledge, passion and resources to significantly improve the services and functionality of this website, in ways that we could not.

In a release of its own, Outside confirmed that it will be making several changes and improvements to the FKT product in the coming months, including:

  • Integration of Gaia GPS technology and map layers in FKT
  • Modernization of the website to improve the user experience on all features of FKT
  • Added new features and benefits to enrich site offerings
  • Expand the available categories of FKT achievements in an effort to make the site more inclusive for a wider variety of athletes
  • Added future FKT benefits for Outside+ members

Outside said that after the acquisition, it “will continue to partner with regional publishers who have been instrumental in FKT’s growth.” FKT founder Buzz Burrell will continue in an advisory role, and co-founders Peter Bakwin and Jeff Schuler will step down to focus on other projects.

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“Without the dedication of our community who cares about and supports our work, we could not have made FKT what it is today: an integral part of running and riding cultures around the world” , says Burrell. “Outside is…significantly improving website services and functionality to continue to serve our large customer base of athletes and active participants. We have no doubt that the acquisition of Outside will take FKT to new heights.