Global architecture and design firm NBBJ has acquired ESI Design. According to the companies, the acquisition signals a new era where buildings will be transformed into immersive and interactive digital experiences that engage and delight.
The two firms—which have previously collaborated on commercial real estate and corporate workplace projects in Boston and New York City—will now provide unified solutions as one of the largest and most robust experience design platforms in the country.
“By integrating the design of architecture and dynamic digital experiences, we will create boundless opportunities to energize the places we live, work, and play to stimulate our senses and inspire discovery, learning, and impact” said Steve McConnell, FAIA, managing partner of NBBJ. “The acquisition of ESI Design brings this vision to life and increases NBBJ’s ability to serve our clients as they activate their brands, create community, inspire wellbeing, and thrive.”
“We are at an exciting moment in time where the diverse skillsets of digital designers, media architecture technologists, gaming engineers and storytellers will partner with architects to create buildings as places that are lively, engaging and evolving,” said Edwin Schlossberg, founder and principal designer of ESI Design. “NBBJ and ESI Design share a vision that well-designed spaces can bring ideas and brands to life in ways that inform, inspire, and delight. Through our partnership we will push the boundaries of what a building can be and help our clients bring people closer together through shared experiences—by seeking to design in ways that enable the environment to learn from its users so that it, and them get better with use.”
Under the agreement, ESI Design becomes NBBJ’s 18th studio. As part of the acquisition, Schlossberg becomes a partner at NBBJ and will lead the ESI Design studio at NBBJ. S
Six ESI Design leaders will become principals at NBBJ: Alexandra Alfaro, Angela Greene, Cara Buckley, Emily Webster, Layne Braunstein, and Susan Okon. NBBJ will retain two office locations in New York City: the NBBJ New York office at 140 Broadway and ESI Design, an NBBJ studio at 111 Fifth Avenue. This will create a presence of 160 NBBJ employees in New York City, bringing the firm’s total employees to more than 800 worldwide.