January 22, 2022

Jack Dorsey Steps Down As Twitter CEO

Major shakeup in Big Tech

Revise (1052ET):   Dorsey has now unlocked his account and published a resignation later, ending a brief but remarkably news blackout on the platform about Dorsey, one of the carrier’s founders, leaving the top job for the second time.

The memo was reportedly sent to employees, and highlights the many work opportunities that Dorsey has held at the company, including being one of a handful of founders from the relatively small but important platform.

Dorsey took credit for “ every major decision” produced at the company since the launch. Twitter’s notorious plus regular pivots during the Dorsey era, which saw twitter routinely try out – and sometimes abandon – new features, will likely loom large within the history of social media.

Read the full letter below:

After almost 16 many years of having a role at the company… from co-founder in order to CEO to Chair to Exec Chair to interim-CEO to CEO… I made a decision it’s finally time for me to leave. Why?

There’s a lot of talk about the importance of a company being “ founder-led. ” Ultimately In my opinion that’s severely limiting plus a single point of failing. I’ve worked hard to assure this company can break away from its founding and founders. There are 3 reasons In my opinion now is the right time.

The foremost is Parag becoming our CEO. The board ran a rigorous process considering most options and unanimously appointed Parag. He’s been my choice for some time given just how deeply he understands the organization and its needs. Parag has been behind every critical choice that helped turn this company around. He’s curious, probing, rational, creative, demanding, self-aware, and humble. He qualified prospects with heart and soul, and is somebody I learn from daily. My trust in him as the CEO is bone deeply.

The second is Bret Taylor agreeing to become our board seat. I asked Bret to participate our board when I became CEO, and he’s been excellent in every way. He understands entrepreneurship, taking dangers, companies at massive scale, technology, product, and your dog is an engineer. All of the points the board and the firm deserve right now. Having Bret in this leadership role means a lot of confidence in the power of our board going forward. You have no idea how happy this particular makes me!

The third is of you. We have lots of ambition and potential on this team. Consider this: Parag started here as an engineer which cared deeply about our work and now he’s our own CEO (I also had a similar path… he made it happen better! ). This alone makes me proud. I know that Parag will be able to channel this energy best because your dog is lived it and knows what it takes. All of you have the potential to change the course of this company for the better. I believe this with all my heart!
Parag is CEO beginning today. I’m going to serve at the board through my phrase (May-ish) to help Parag and Bret with the transition. And after that… I’ll leave the board. Why not stay or even become chair? I believe this really is important to give Parag the area he needs to lead. Plus back to my previous stage, I believe it’s critical an organization can stand on its own, free from its founder’s influence or direction.

I want you all of to know that this was my decision and I own it. It was a tough one for me, of course. I really like this service and company… and all of you so much. I’m really sad… yet actually happy. There aren’t many companies that get to this level. And there do not get many founders that select their company over their own ego. I know we’ll demonstrate this was the right move.

We’ll have an all-hands meeting tomorrow at 9: 05 ARE Pacific to discuss it all. Till then, thank you all for the trust you’ve placed in me personally, and for the openness to construct that trust in Parag plus yourselves. I love you all.

jack

PS I’m tweeting this email. My one particular wish is for Twitter Incorporation to be the most transparent business in the world. Hi mom!

CNBC was careful to note that Twitter is a relatively small player in the tech area going by market capitalization (and many other metrics). Whilst “ culturally important” actually even as large as Docusign ($37. 6 billion vs . $49 billion), and smaller sized even than troubled social media rival Snap ($79 billion).  

At this point the big question: will the new management be able to execute? One particular analyst noted that Dorsey will likely be grateful for the opportunity to no longer face down Congress in a seemingly never-ending stream of hearings, which some fear could bog down Dorsey’s successor, Agrawal, and Bret Taylor, whose ascension to Twitter’s board is also notable.

Finally, it’s worth noting that will Dorsey has been increasingly discussing bitcoin and blockchain, 2 areas that Square, the other Dorsey-led startup-turned-publicly traded founder-led firm, has embraced via decisions to facilitate obligations and purchase of crypto, as well as other moves that we see at this point were clearly championed by Dorsey.

The particular founder, known for his strongly bizarre appearance, said throughout a recent interview that he might leave Twitter and Square to go help bitcoin when they needed the help.

Is that what he’s doing now?

Update (1045ET):   Ironically considering that it’s in the business of instant and open-source transmission of news and information, Twitter has confirmed to Bloomberg that will Dorsey has indeed made a decision to step down, and that he or she and the board have with one voice chosen Parag Agrawal to be the new CEO, while also joining the company’s board, effective immediately.

Bret Taylor will even become an independent chair associated with Twitter’s board. Furthermore, Dorsey has suspended his twitter account, while users make a complaint about the paucity of information regarding Dorsey’s move available on Tweets.

Shares associated with Twitter are still halted impending news.

Within a fitting conclusion to Twitter’s second Dorsey era, stocks had soared premarket and early trading after the open before being swiftly stopped.

Many mentioned the incongruity, taking to – where else? – Twitter to express their problems.

Update (0950ET):   Trading in Tweets shares has been halted because investors await confirmation of news of Dorsey’s reduction.

The time of the announcement of both Dorsey’s departure, and the arrival of his successor, aren’t yet clear. But Dorsey has already survived one attempt to oust him, which was brought by Elliott Management founder and billionaire investor John Singer. Singer had publicly questioned whether Dorsey should be running both companies, calling on the CEO to stop lower as CEO of one of these.

Dorsey previously served as Twitter TOP DOG between the company’s founding and 2008, when he was first ousted by the board, just before being brought back in 2015 to replace outgoing CEO Dick Costolo. Dorsey also assisted create Square.

* * *

Update (0945ET):   Just minutes after US markets opened Mon, more details about Dorsey’s plans to depart the top work at a company he helped create have emerged.

According to CNBC, Dorsey and the Twitter board have previously decided on his successor, even though it’s not clear yet whom that will be.

* * *

Jack Dorsey, the Tweets co-founder who presently leads both Twitter and publicly traded payments darling Square, offers decided to cave to investors demands that he step back in the top job at one of the two companies he presently leads. According to  CNBC , Dorsey has decided to give up the top work at Twitter.

Twitter shares rallied within premarket trading on the news, rising 12% at their peak before the open.

Analysts speculated that the reason Twitter shares are rising is the fact that Dorsey’s exit has signaled speculation that a bidder might soon emerge to gobble up the social media platform (even as concerns about Big Tech monopolies have pushed Democrats to take action).

Dorsey continues to be dragged before Congress several times in recent years as Twitter is becoming embroiled in several controversies, especially the argument over Twitter’s systematic censorship of conservative voices (at the behest of the company’s liberal backers, users and employees).


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