Twitter chief executive to stand down

Twitter chief executive to stand down

Twitter co-founder Evan Williams has confirmed he will step down from his role as chief executive of the company.

In a move revealed on his personal Twitter feed, Mr Williams said the move was designed to allow him to focus on ways of making Twitter more profitable.

Mr Williams, who has headed the company since 2008, said the social networking service needed to “meet its potential as a profitable company”.

He will be replaced by the current chief operating officer, Dick Costolo.

Tweet

Twitter – launched in 2006 - has grown dramatically in recent years, with millions of travel industry professionals employing the service to bolster awareness of their product.

User numbers now top 160 million - compared with three million two years ago – with most surveys placing the site in the top ten most popular on the internet. 

image
Williams will seek to improve revenue generation at Twitter

However, growth has not been matched by a sustained increase in revenue, with Twitter projected to generate just $150 million in 2010.

Mr Williams said in order to continue to be successful, the company now needed to start converting that growth into profit.

“Growing big is not success in itself,” he explained.

“Success to us means meeting our potential as a profitable company that can retain its culture and user focus while having a positive impact on the world.

“This is no small task.

“This is why I have decided to ask our chief operating officer, Dick Costolo, to become Twitter’s chief executive.

“Starting today, I’ll be completely focused on product strategy.”

Mr Williams is the second of Twitter’s founders to have served as chief executive, having taken over from Jack Dorsey in 2007 when he moved to become the company’s chairman.

Many analysts believe the decision will see Twitter move away from its role as a communications platform, focusing instead on becoming advertising platform.