Dorsey gets Twitter CEO post, Bain appointed COO

Twitter has made co-founder Jack Dorsey its new CEO, ending months of speculation and handing him the tough task of turning around the company's sluggish user growth.

Jack Dorsey
Jack Dorsey

Twitter has made co-founder Jack Dorsey its new CEO, ending months of speculation and handing him the tough task of turning around the company's sluggish user growth.

Dorsey is also CEO of mobile payments company Square, creating the unusual situation of having one person lead two high-profile Silicon Valley companies at the same time. He's also on the board of The Walt Disney Company.

Dorsey has been Twitter's interim CEO since Dick Costolo stepped down abruptly four months ago, so the big change, approved by the board on September 30 according to an SEC filing, is to make Dorsey's role permanent. That filling also said that "there are currently no plans to provide Mr. Dorsey with direct compensation for his role as Chief Executive Officer."

The board also appointed Adam Bain, who has been president, Global Revenue & Partnerships since September 2010, as COO. Also on September 30, Costolo resigned his position on Twitter's board. While Dorsey had been Twitter's chairman, the SEC filing made public on Monday said that he will no longer serve in that role although he will remain on the board. It did not say who will take on that position.

Dorsey's main tasks at Twitter are to figure out how to attract users at a faster pace, and to create a path to profitability.

The social network is under intense pressure to figure out how to draw new users to its service. Unlike Facebook, which ramped easily to a billion subscribers, Twitter grew quickly at the start but seems to have hit a plateau.

It reported strong growth in its advertising business last quarter, but the social network isn't profitable, in part because it's investing in the infrastructure that delivers its service.

More worryingly, the number of core users who access Twitter at least once a month increased by only 2 million last quarter, to 304 million.

"This is unacceptable and we’re not happy about it," Dorsey said at the time.

In July, he outlined steps to draw more users, including making it easier for people to get started on Twitter, and showing more meaningful tweets in timelines.

"People all over the world know of the power of Twitter, but it's not clear why they should harness it themselves," he said then. Twitter needs to communicate better why people should want to use it.

He even talked about rethinking Twitter's signature chronological tweet stream, but a challenge for the company is that any big changes could alienate its core base.

Dorsey created Twitter in 2005 and 2006 with Evan Williams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass. Dorsey became CEO soon after but lost the role in 2008, because he became a "distracted manager," according to a profile in The New Yorker.

The following year he co-founded Square, known for its technology that lets small merchants take credit card payments on smartphones and tablets. He's chairman and CEO of that company, in addition to now being CEO of Twitter.

Twitter's investors don't seem thrilled at having a CEO who divides his time between two companies. The company's stock slipped more than 8 percent last week after reports emerged that Dorsey was likely to get the top job.

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Behaviour change, by design

​We’re living in an age of unprecedented change. We experience with Oculus Rift, invest with Acorns, consume video through Hyper, tune into Pandora and navigate with Waze.

Glen Jeffreys

Head of UX, Deepend Group

Chat bots: How to use them commercially right now

I’m sure that many of you out there have heard a lot about chat bots (aka messaging bots) recently, and the fact that they are here to stay is pretty evident by now.

Deniz Nalbantoglu

Managing director, Webling-Interactive

Top tips to uncovering consumer insights for business innovation

An in-depth understanding of consumers sits at the heart of what we all need to do, but we know it’s not always easy to uncover insights that will unlock a true innovation opportunity.

Matt Whale

Managing director, How To Impact

There is a new digital capture tool called QuickTrials app (www.quicktrials.com) that allows people who conduct Field Trials to collect t...

Quick Trials

How a new digital and data strategy for agriculture is helping farmers innovate

Read more

Recommendation engine is a great example of AI / ML.

Francis Kim

Chat bots: How to use them commercially right now - Big data delivery - CMO Australia

Read more

This new logo is offensively bad! And stop flashing it at us in between points on the television coverage. Trying to subliminally program...

Simon

Tennis Australia unwraps new brand identity for Australian Open

Read more

Thanks, Nadia. It was so interesting blog for me because it helps me able to understand well on the basics of business and marketing conc...

MichaelBGreen

3 ways marketers can raise their executive influence

Read more

Having been to the AO on Wednesday for the first time in a number of years I was very impressed with the new branding. The event has evol...

Naomi

Tennis Australia unwraps new brand identity for Australian Open

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in