Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey
CNBC reported this morning that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is expected to step down from his role at the social media company. Shortly after, Dorsey himself confirmed the rumors and Twitter issued a press release with more details. Parag Agrawal, who joined Twitter as an engineer in 2011 and has served as CTO since 2017, will take over as Dorsey’s successor.
Dorsey is the CEO of both Twitter and Square, a financial company that serves both consumer and corporate customers with payment, cash management and transference services.
Twitter says Dorsey will remain on Twitter’s Board until his term expires at the 2022 meeting of stockholders. Alongside Dorsey’s departure, Bret Taylor, the president and COO of Salesforce, was named the new Chairman of the Board, succeeding Patrick Pichette who will remain on the Board and continue to serve as chair of the Audit Committee, the company said.
Twitter said there are no changes to the company’s previously shared outlook for the fourth quarter and full-year 2021, or its 2023 goals, as a result of these leadership changes.
Twitter’s stock rose on the news that Dorsey may step down, trading up 6.1% as of the time of writing after giving up some early gains in the first minutes of the week’s trading cycle. Update: Twitter shares are now effectively flat on the day, off some 0.13% as of the time of this update (12:43 ET on Monday).
For comparison purposes, Twitter is worth around $40 billion today. No small number, to be clear, but less than half the value of Square, which has a public-market worth of just over $99 billion.
Running one public company is work. Running two is uncommon and, we presume, not a simple feat. Square shares are also trading higher this morning, albeit to a smaller degree. (Twitter has attracted investor dissent for its CEO’s split time.) Square confirmed to TechCrunch there are no changes to Dorsey’s role there, nor anything else related to leadership, strategy, or financial outlook.
“I want you all to know that this was my decision and I own it, … there aren’t many founders that choose their company over their own ego. I know we’ll prove this was the right move.”Jack Dorsey
During his time at Twitter, Agrawal has been responsible for the company’s technical strategy and has led the work to improve development velocity. He also advanced the state of machine learning across Twitter. Prior to being appointed CTO, Parag was Twitter’s first Distinguished Engineer due to his work across revenue and consumer engineering, including his impact on the re-acceleration of audience growth in 2016 and 2017, the company said. The exec holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey