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Airbnb hires Jony Ive to design next-gen products and services

Online vacation rental giant Airbnb on Wednesday said it has hired former Apple CDO Jony Ive and his company LoveFrom to assist in the design of future products and services.

Announced in a blog post from Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky, Ive will work on next-generation "products and services" as a design consultant. It appears that he will report directly to Chesky, or collaborate on design initiatives with the CEO, throughout what is described as a "multi-year relationship."

"Jony will also help us continue to develop our internal design team, which he believes to be one of the world's best," Chesky writes. "I know he is particularly excited about a relationship that will evolve to become a deep collaboration with our creative team."

As noted by The Information, Ive and Chesky have known each other for years. Ive helped flesh out Airbnb's logo in 2014, while Chesky wrote Ive's biography for Time magazine's top 100 most influential people in 2015.

Airbnb on Wednesday told employees that its chief design officer, Alex Schleifer, would step down to a part-time role, The Information reports. Schleifer led the company's design team for six years.

Today's news comes ahead of Airbnb's initial public offering, which is currently targeted for December.

After nearly three decades at Apple, Ive departed the company in 2019 to set up independent design consultancy LoveFrom. Ive played a critical roll in shaping Apple's famed design language during his long tenure at the company. His fingerprints are on everything from iPhone to Apple Park in Cupertino.