British designer Jony Ive to leave Apple after 27 years

Mark Johnson's picture

US tech giant Apple has announced that Sir Jony Ive, its chief design officer, will depart the company as an employee later this year to form an independent design company which will count Apple among its primary clients.

The new company will be called LoveFrom, and although little has been formally said about the new venture, the BB reported that it may have wearable technology as its initial focus. The name LoveFrom is reportedly taken from a quote from Apple founder Steve Jobs, which refers to making something with love and care for people one will never meet.

However, while Ive pursues his personal projects, Apple said that London-born Ive, in his new company, will continue to work closely and on a range of projects with Apple.

“Jony is a singular figure in the design world and his role in Apple’s revival cannot be overstated, from 1998’s groundbreaking iMac to the iPhone and the unprecedented ambition of Apple Park, where recently he has been putting so much of his energy and care,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO.

Good Apples: Ive (left) with CEO Tim Cook

Continuing relationship

“Apple will continue to benefit from Jony’s talents by working directly with him on exclusive projects, and through the ongoing work of the brilliant and passionate design team he has built. 

“After so many years working closely together, I’m happy that our relationship continues to evolve and I look forward to working with Jony long into the future.”

Design team leaders Evans Hankey, vice president of Industrial Design, and Alan Dye, vice president of Human Interface Design, will report to Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. 

Both Dye and Hankey have played key leadership roles on Apple’s design team for many years, the company said. 

Williams has led the development of Apple Watch since its inception and will spend more of his time working with the design team in their studio.

27 year legacy

“After nearly 30 years and countless projects, I am most proud of the lasting work we have done to create a design team, process and culture at Apple that is without peer”, said Ive. 

“Today it is stronger, more vibrant and more talented than at any point in Apple’s history. 

“The team will certainly thrive under the excellent leadership of Evans, Alan and Jeff, who have been among my closest collaborators. 

“I have the utmost confidence in my designer colleagues at Apple, who remain my closest friends, and I look forward to working with them for many years to come.”

Apple’s design team, recognised with countless design awards, brings together creatives from around the world representing multiple disciplines, including user interface, industrial design, graphic and font design, haptics and sound design.

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