Apple has picked up a few new hires and advisors to assist its growing Watch team ahead of the Apple Watch launch currently on track for March. Among them, Apple has recently hired another executive from the fashion industry, this time from Louis Vuitton, in addition to two new hires from the medical industry.
Jacob Jordan, previously based in Paris as Louis Vuitton’s director of the company’s men’s ready to wear collection, joined Apple in October and since confirmed the move on his LinkedIn page. Jordan now serves as Director of Product Merchandising on Apple’s Special Projects team in Cupertino, likely working alongside other fashion executives Apple has hired to assist in preparing for the upcoming Apple Watch launch. Prior to the two and a half years spent at Louis Vuitton, Jordan held various fashion executive roles stateside at Theory, Thom Browne, and Helmut Lang. Jordan is yet another fashion executive hire for Apple as its new retail chief Angela Ahrendts, formerly of Burberry, and the company’s Apple Watch team recruit team members for the launch of its first product crossing into the fashion world.
Another notable recent hire for Apple is Dr. Stephen H. Friend, co-founder and president of Sage Bionetworks, a non-profit doing biomedical research and developing an open-source platform for sharing and analyzing data. The non-profit’s work includes a platform dubbed Synapse that the company describes as “a collaborative set of technical services that allow scientists to access, share and analyze data together, in a visible and traceable way.” It also has BRIDGE for allowing patients to share data with researchers through a web-based open source platform.
The Synapse platform is composed of a set of shared web services that support a website designed to facilitate collaboration among scientific teams, and integrations with analysis tools and programming environments…Synapse goes beyond being a data repository and creates a computational platform for real-time research collaboration. We have begun to see evidence that a shared environment can help scientific teams find and correct analysis errors more quickly, get more diverse teams working on complex problems, and integrate disparate data to answer scientific questions
Sources say Friend is advising Apple on medical technology.
Also now advising Apple on medical related technology is Dan Riskin, MD, founder and CEO of Vanguard Medical Technologies and an Consulting Associate Professor of Surgery at Stanford University, according to sources in the medical industry. Vanguard describes itself as “a medical technology incubation firm” with several products and spin-off companies already in the healthcare industry, although there aren’t many details on specific companies it has invested in. It is likely that Apple’s latest medical hires are working alongside Apple’s growing team of medical and fitness experts, many of which are working on projects related to Apple Watch and its upcoming launch. Riskin declined to comment for this article.
Earlier this week we reported the first solid launch date for the Apple Watch as retail training is set to get underway in mid-February signaling a likely March release for the product.
Apple’s new hires add to a long list of medical and fitness experts hired in the time leading up to the Apple Watch announcement last fall and its launch later this year. On the retail and marketing side of things for the Watch, Apple has also added a number of hires from the fashion industry under its new retail chief, former Burberry exec Angela Ahrendts.
Mark Gurman contributed to this report.