Jack Dorsey has announced he is stepping down as CEO of the mega-social platform he founded, Twitter, in a change that will be effective immediately.
In an announcement from the company, Parag Agrawal, Twitter’s chief technology officer, will take over as CEO.
“I’ve decided to leave Twitter because I believe the company is ready to move on from its founders. My trust in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is deep. His work over the past 10 years has been transformational. I’m deeply grateful for his skill, heart, and soul. It’s his time to lead,” said Dorsey in a statement.
“On behalf of the Board, I want to thank Jack for his visionary leadership and unrelenting dedication to Twitter since its founding,” added Bret Taylor, Twitter’s incoming Independent Board chair.
“Jack returned to Twitter and turned the Company around at the most critical time. The progress since then has been nothing short of incredible. Jack has given the world something invaluable and we will continue to carry it forward,” he added.
“Parag understands Twitter and appreciates the Company’s unique potential,” Taylor added.
“He has been instrumental in tackling our most important priorities, including accelerating our development velocity, and I know he’ll hit the ground running to strengthen execution and deliver results. The Board has the utmost confidence in Parag,” said Taylor.
“I want to thank the Board for their confidence in my leadership and Jack for his continued mentorship, support, and partnership,” said Agrawal in a statement.
“I look forward to building on everything we have accomplished under Jack’s leadership and I am incredibly energized by the opportunities ahead. By continuing to improve our execution, we will deliver tremendous value for our customers and shareholders as we reshape the future of public conversation,” he added.
The company’s statement noted that Taylor succeeds Patrick Pichette, who is staying on as a board member and will serve as chairman of the Audit Committee.
The statement went on to provide more details about Dorsey’s successor:
Parag Agrawal joined Twitter in 2011 and has served as Chief Technology Officer (CTO) since October 2017. As CTO, he has been responsible for the Company’s technical strategy, leading work to improve development velocity while advancing the state of Machine Learning across the company. Prior to being appointed CTO, Parag had risen to be 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. Parag 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.
Last year, Dorsey faced being ousted from his company after stakeholder Elliot Management sought to replace him, CNBC reported. The firm’s founder, billionaire investor Peter Singer, was not sure that Dorsey should run Twitter and Square, Dorsey’s digital payments platform. Singer reportedly asked Dorsey to step down as CEO of either platform before reaching a deal with the management team at Twitter.
Dorsey founded Twitter in 2006 and was its CEO until 2008 before he was pushed out. However, he came back in 2015 to helm the company when former CEO Dick Costolo stepped down.
Since then, Twitter shares have skyrocketed 85 percent and Square stock has risen a whopping 1,566% since its initial public offering on Nov. 19, 2015, CNBC noted. The companies stock surged Monday upon reports of Dorsey’s departure.
Twitter has been cited mostly by conservatives for its censorship of certain content, which some believe was not necessarily Dorsey’s fault, including top podcaster and author Candace Owens, who now believes that it will only get worse.
“This is the right take. I’ve been telling people for years. Jack Dorsey is not your enemy. He is a prisoner at his own company,” she tweeted upon hearing the news. “Good thing the Parler app is finally working properly and looks amazing. The communists will fully run Twitter soon.”