Elon Musk has announced that he has found a new CEO to lead Twitter, which he purchased for $44bn (£35bn) last year. Although he did not disclose the name of the new chief executive, Musk stated that “she” will begin in six weeks. He also revealed that he will take on the role of executive chairman and chief technology officer. According to reports, Linda Yaccarino, who was the head of advertising sales at NBCUniversal, is expected to assume the position. NBCUniversal later confirmed her departure.
Mr. Musk had been under pressure to appoint someone else to run the company so he could concentrate on his other ventures. In response to an online poll last year, in which Twitter users voted for him to step down, Musk remarked that “No one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive.” Nonetheless, although Musk had indicated that he would hand over the reins, it was unclear when or even if this would occur.
Following the announcement, Tesla’s stock prices saw an increase.
However, some shareholders had previously accused Elon Musk of neglecting Tesla after his acquisition of Twitter, which they believed had a negative impact on the car company’s reputation.
“We see this as a significant step forward with Musk finally acknowledging the public sentiment surrounding this Twitter debacle,” commented Dan Ives of Wedbush Securities.
“Trying to manage Twitter, Tesla, and SpaceX as the CEO was an impossible task that needed to be rectified.”
According to reports from the Wall Street Journal and Variety, Linda Yaccarino, the former head of advertising sales at NBCUniversal, was reportedly in negotiations to take on the role of Twitter’s CEO. The speculation grew when NBCUniversal declared that Yaccarino had left the company.
Twitter has not commented on these reports.
It can be challenging to discern when the billionaire and Twitter owner is being serious. In a recent interview with the BBC, when asked about his successor as CEO of the social media company, Mr Musk stated that he had appointed a dog as Twitter’s leader. If Elon Musk has indeed chosen a woman to lead Twitter, she would be among the few females to hold top positions in major technology companies. Women made up less than 10% of chief executives in tech firms included in America’s top 500 companies last year.
Although Mr. Musk has previously discussed paid subscribers for Twitter Blue, advertising generates the bulk of Twitter’s revenue. The new CEO will likely focus on improving relations with advertisers and addressing their concerns regarding content moderation. As a self-proclaimed free speech advocate, Mr. Musk has stated that he took over Twitter to protect freedom of expression. However, advertisers do not want their advertisements to be displayed alongside misinformation or extremist content.
After a lawsuit forced him to complete the deal, Mr Musk purchased Twitter in October.
Upon taking over, he controversially laid off thousands of employees to cut costs at the company, which has struggled to be profitable. In March, Mr. Musk claimed that these efforts had paid off, and the platform’s finances were improving. Furthermore, he informed the BBC last month that most of the advertisers who had left Twitter immediately after his acquisition had returned.