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‘It doesn't worry me in the slightest’ – DesignStudio founder responds to criticism of new Airbnb logo

Co-founder of DesignStudio, the London-based design firm behind the much discussed new Airbnb logo, Ben Wright, has defended the redesign following a wave of criticism on Twitter overnight, which saw people criticise it for looking like a vagina.

In a statement issued to The Drum, Wright said: “A brand transformation of this scale for a company this size is a big deal – and it will always inspire debate and get people talking. Responses so far have shown that’s exactly the case. We’ve heard the logo looks like a lot of things, from an A+ symbol, running rivers and tracks, and of course sexual imagery!

“Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, that doesn't worry me in the slightest. This is a bold new transformational brand – something that’s revolutionary. Eventually it will be identified with Airbnb. It represents the community and it's the symbol for belonging."

During yesterday’s launch of the new branding, Wright explained that Airbnb had approached them looking to move on from the bubble logo it had carried since it was established in 2007 in favour of something that symbolised what they stood for now – ‘belonging’.

He said the design process was “very much in collaboration” with senior executives and creatives from Airbnb.

“They wanted to create something that their community could engage with and that represented this community. They were really brave and open to suggestions.”

Airbnb had not responded to The Drum’s request for comments at the time of writing but has issued a statement responding to the similarities between the new logo and an existing one from an IT automation company called Automation Anywhere.

“Airbnb and Automation Anywhere are working cooperatively to address this issue, and Automation Anywhere is in the process of transitioning to a new logo design that is not similar to the Airbnb logo,” read the statement.

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