Shares of Twitter Inc. shot up 7 percent Monday as investors welcomed cofounder Jack Dorsey as the company’s permanent chief executive officer.
The stock ended up $1.84 to $28.15, leaving the company with a market capitalization of just over $19 billion.
This story first appeared in the October 6, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
On a conference call with Wall Street Monday, which amounted to a coming out party, Dorsey stressed that the microblogging company is on the move, bringing in new experiences for the users — and marketers.
Dorsey, who sent the first tweet in 2006 when Twitter went live, said the company had “bold plans” that included a “dramatic evolution across Twitter, Periscope and Vine,” referring to the firm’s other products.
Dorsey, who will also continue to lead the payments firm Square, stepped in as interim ceo of the company in July, filling in the void left by the departure of Dick Costolo.
He has his work cut out for him. Twitter has a big user base — 316 million monthly active users in the second quarter — but that base grew just 2.6 percent from the first quarter.
Twitter has been moving forward, adding longer direct messages, self-service advertising for marketers to reach a global audience and a more robust “buy” button.
But the service hasn’t evolved as fast as many believe is necessary in the never-stop tech world.
Erna Alfred Liousas, an analyst at Forrester Research, said Dorsey has “pretty much owned up to the fact that there was a major problem with the platform….They’re not growing because other people [who are not on the platform] don’t know how to use it, which is pretty significant, it’s a huge marketing issue.”
The key for Twitter and Dorsey is to keep the innovation rolling, she said.
“He was one of the cofounders of this product, so deep down, he has a vision,” Liousas said. “Even though he was ousted [in 2008], I’m sure he still has a vision for what this product could be. Right now, aside from a few recent things, Twitter has not been known for innovation. His return is signaling that they’re serious about addressing these overarching user issues.”