Airbnb hires former Apple designer Jony Ive’s company for multi-year partnership

FILE PHOTO: A woman talks on the phone at the Airbnb office headquarters in the SOMA neighborhood of San Francisco, California, U.S., August 2, 2016. REUTERS/Gabrielle Lurie

OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) – Home rental company Airbnb Inc said on Wednesday it is hiring former Apple designer Jony Ive and his company to design new Airbnb products and services under a multi-year deal.

I was a close creative collaborator of Apple Inc. AAPL.O co-founder Steve Jobs. I spent nearly three decades at Apple, leading the design of the candy-colored iMacs that helped pull Apple out of near-death in the 1990s and designing the iPhone. He left Apple last year.

In a blog post announcing the working relationship, Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky said Ive would also help grow Airbnb’s internal design team.

Airbnb told employees on Wednesday that design director Alex Schleifer would transition to a part-time position and that the company would be looking for a permanent replacement, according to a source familiar with the company.

The deal with Ive and his company, LoveFrom, coincides with Airbnb’s efforts to raise about $3 billion in its upcoming initial public offering, sources say.

Airbnb is set to be one of the biggest and most anticipated U.S. stock market listings of 2020, which has already been a banner year for IPOs.

Reporting by Jane Lanhee Lee; Editing by Cynthia Osterman

Comments are closed.