Airbnb Laid-Off Technologists Could Head to… JPMorgan?

It’s been a month since Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Cheskey emailed his employees with news that the company would lay off 1,900 employees due to COVID-19. One day soon, some of them may turn up at JPMorgan.

In a post on LinkedIn, Apoorv Saxena, the global head of artificial intelligence at JPMorgan, said his team was already “reaching out” to some of Airbnb’s former technologists.

Saxena is building a new A.I. team in JPMorgan’s office in San Mateo; to fuel that effort, he’s been hiring technologists from Google, Apple, and Facebook, among other firms.

Airbnb is helpfully facilitating the reemployment of its people with a talent directory detailing exactly who’s been let go. They include around 80 engineers, mostly based in San Francisco, but mostly also open to remote work if JPMorgan wanted them in, say, New York City.

Saxena’s team will likely be interested in Airbnb engineers with machine learning experience. The rentals company has worked on interesting A.I. projects, including an image classification model that could help categorize different rooms for rent, a search ranking powered by machine learning, and knowledge graph infrastructure to help contextualize its platform. Only a few of the 80 Airbnb engineers listed on the talent directory have A.I. experience, though: most have worked on core systems and come with expertise in Ruby on Rails, Java, Javascript, React and AWS

No one from Airbnb seems to have arrived at JPMorgan just yet, but this doesn’t mean they won’t do so soon. Airbnb gave its laid-off technologists a generous severance package comprised of 14 weeks’ base pay, plus one additional week for each year at the firm (the norm in banking is now more like one to two months’ for each year worked). They may be taking some time to explore their options.

A modified version of this article originally appeared in eFinancialCareers.