Departing AmEx CEO Kenneth Chenault to join Airbnb board

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(Reuters) – Departing American Express Co (AXP.N) Chief Executive Kenneth Chenault will become Airbnb Inc’s first non-affiliated independent board director, the home rental service’s CEO Brian Chesky said.

This is the first addition to board since the company was founded in 2008, an Airbnb spokesman said.

Last week, Facebook Inc (FB.O) appointed Chenault to its board, making him the first non-white director on the social network’s board.

Chenault is leaving American Express on Feb. 1, ending a nearly 17-year tenure at the helm of the No. 1 U.S. card issuer by spending.

“As the CEO of American Express, Ken has built one of the most successful trust based companies in the world,” Chesky wrote in a letter to a group of Airbnb hosts that was shared with Reuters.

Reporting by Munsif Vengattil in Bengaluru and Heather Somerville in San Francisco; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty