Major Twitter investor calls for Dorsey to stay

Prince Alwaleed reverses his previous comments, now says he would support Dorsey as full-time CEO

Financial trends and news by Steven Loeb
June 15, 2015
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/3e3a

Since Dick Costolo revealed last week that he was stepping down from his position as CEO of Twitter, the open question has been: who will take over for him?

Jack Dorsey, Twitter's Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board, was named CEO on an interim basis, but it seems unlikely that Dorsey will be taking the job at Twitter permanently, as he will continue to be the CEO of Square, the payment company he co-founded.

Or would he? At least one prominent Twitter investor now seems to be openly endorsing the idea.

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, the nephew of the late King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, made $300 million investment in Twitter in December 2011 for a 3% stake in the company. And now he'd like a say about who gets to be in charge, telling Reuters on Monday that he believes it would be a good thing for Dorsey to once again lead the company. 

Alwaleed said in a written statement that he "knew Dorsey well and that as one of the founders who knows the company very well he would bring the needed continuity."

"And I will add now that should Mr. Dorsey wish to take on the CEO role, I would support him," he said.

Interestingly, these comment are a direct reversal of Alwaleed's previous comment on the matter. In fact, just the day before, on Sunday, Alaweed was quoted by the Financial Times as saying that he thought it would be best if Dorsey stayed at Square.

“Jack has another company called Square which requires a lot of attention and a full-time job round there. I believe and trust that Jack Dorsey is there on a temporary basis,” he said.

“The new leader has to have tech savviness, an investor-oriented process and a marketing mentality.”

As far as I can tell, so far Alwaleed seems to be the only Twitter investor to be talking openly about whether Dorsey should stay or go, but the general consensus does not seem to be positive. While Twitter's stock jumped 7% on the news when it first broke last Thursday, since then the reaction has been much more muted.

The stock closed down $1 on Friday, and is down $1.17, or 3.26%, to $34.73 a share on Monday.

One other proponent of Dorsey staying on at Twitter is Vator's founder and CEO Bambi Francisco Roizen, who wrote that "Jack Dorsey's return to Twitter is a plus."

"If Jack is anything close to a Jobs, then the company is at an attractive growth position. If he continues to make smart decisions that he's been making at Square, then the future is promising. He did make great hiring decisions, after all, he brought in Keith Rabois, now at Khosla Ventures, to be Square's COO, and Keith is undoubtedly one of the best operators I know," she said.

"If news of Google's interest in Twitter is real, and Jack can come up with some new cool ideas, which I believe most people believe he can, Twitter is definitely pretty attractive right now."

VatorNews has reached out to Twitter for comment. We will update this story if we learn more. 

(Image source: wired.co.uk)

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