“I am excited to welcome Linda Yaccarino as the new CEO of Twitter!” Musk wrote in a Friday tweet. He added that Yaccarino “will focus primarily on business operations, while I focus on product design & new technology.” Yaccarino has worked at NBCUniversal for nearly 12 years — with her team generating more than USD 100 billion in ad sales since 2011, her company bio notes. According to LinkedIn, Yaccarino previously served as NBC’s chair for advertising and client partnerships and as president of cable entertainment and digital advertising sales. Prior to her time with NBC, Yaccarino worked at global entertainment company Turner for almost two decades.
Luring advertisers is critical for Musk and Twitter after many fled in the early months after his takeover of the social media platform, fearing harm to their brands in the ensuing chaos. Musk said in late April that advertisers had returned, but provided no details.
“If anyone can translate the Musk vision into advantages for marketers she’ll be able to do it,” DiMassimo said. “Even though there’s skepticism and all marketers live in the ‘show me’ state right now with regard to Twitter, if in fact she does go to Twitter this is a powerfully reassuring move.” Musk has long insisted he is not the company’s permanent CEO. The Tesla billionaire said in a tweet Thursday that his role will transition to being Twitter’s executive chairman and chief technology officer.
More than a month later, he tweeted in December: “I will resign as CEO as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job.” The pledge came after millions of Twitter users asked him to step down in a Twitter poll the billionaire himself created and promised to abide by.
“A new CEO is the only way forward for Twitter,” said Insider Intelligence analyst Jasmine Enberg.
Shares of Tesla rose about 2 per cent Thursday after Musk made the announcement. Shareholders of the electric car company have been concerned about how much of his attention is being spent on Twitter.
Musk said he never intended to be CEO of Tesla, and that he didn’t want to be chief executive of any other companies either, preferring to see himself as an engineer. Musk also said at the time that he expected an organizational restructuring of Twitter to be completed in the next week or so. It’s been nearly six months since he said that.
Bantering with Twitter followers late last year, Musk expressed pessimism about the prospects for a new CEO, saying that person “must like pain a lot” to run a company that “has been in the fast lane to bankruptcy.” “No one wants the job who can actually keep Twitter alive. There is no successor,” Musk tweeted at the time.
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