Elon Musk Steps Down as the CEO of Twitter—What Happens Next?
According to Elon Musk, he found a new CEO for Twitter—now known as X Corp.—but she will be starting in about six weeks. Her name? Linda Yaccarino.
Following Elon Musk’s $44 billion (around PHP 2.47 trillion) purchase of the social media platform Twitter, many things have happened. This includes debuting the monthly paid blue check, Twitter Blue, which caused many cases of mistaken identity, a full office shutdown with mass layoffs, new ad placement policies in the hopes of winning back clients, and even a brief moment when the iconic blue bird logo was replaced with a Shiba Inu dog, among many other happenings.
Admittedly, all this has generated fresh interest in Twitter—with headline after headline talking about what Musk has done to the social media platform. And in recent news, Musk got the whole world talking with the news that he will be stepping down as Twitter’s CEO.
Aside from the news that he has found a new CEO for Twitter—or X Corp. as it is now called—he said that his replacement, a woman, will be starting in six weeks. Moreover, he will transition to a new role as executive chairman and chief technology officer, where he’ll be focusing on “overseeing product, software, and [system operator] sysops.”
Foreshadowing or Sudden News?
Although Musk bought Twitter last October 27, 2022, and has been running it ever since he has long insisted that he is not the company’s permanent CEO. In fact, in mid-November, just weeks after buying the social media platform, he told a Delaware court that he did not want to be the CEO of any company. “I expect to reduce my time at Twitter and find somebody else to run Twitter over time,” Musk said.
The Tesla billionaire then tweeted in December: “I will resign as CEO as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job.” This came after millions of Twitter users asked him to step down—based on a poll that he himself created and promised to abide by.
And in February this year, he told a conference that he “anticipated finding a CEO for San Francisco-based Twitter, ‘probably toward the end of this year.’“
Despite not knowing who would replace Musk, business analysts welcomed the news, as Twitter’s advertising business has been affected under his rule. But on another end, the billionaire told BBC last month that the company is now “roughly” breaking even.
“A new CEO is the only way forward for Twitter,” said Insider Intelligence analyst Jasmine Enberg. “The single biggest problem with Twitter’s ad business was Elon Musk.”
“As he steps back, Twitter can begin to unravel Musk’s personal brand from the company’s corporate image and attempt to regain trust among advertisers. The success of those efforts will depend on who takes over, but it’s difficult to imagine that the new CEO could be more controversial or damaging to Twitter’s ad business than Musk has been,” Enberg adds.
Following this, shares of Tesla rose by about 2% after Musk made the announcement about stepping down, as its shareholders have been concerned about how much time he has been spending on Twitter.
Meet the New Twitter CEO: Linda Yaccarino
But just who will take on the arduous task as the CEO of Twitter? According to a report from Euronews, that chosen person is Linda Yaccarino—an NBCUniversal executive with deep ties to the advertising industry.
“I am excited to welcome Linda Yaccarino as the new CEO of Twitter!” Musk tweeted on Friday. “@lindayacc will focus primarily on business operations, while I focus on product design [and] new technology. Looking forward to working with Linda to transform this platform into X, the everything app.”
According to Yaccarino’s LinkedIn profile, she has worked at NBCUniversal for nearly 12 years, previously as chair for advertising and client partnerships and as president of cable entertainment and digital advertising sales. Prior to her time with NBC, she worked at Turner—a global entertainment company—for almost two decades.
Expectations for the New CEO
The same day when Musk confirms his replacement, NBCUniversal said that Yaccarino would be stepping down from the company as chairwoman for global advertising and partnerships.
Following the recent announcement by Musk, some users expressed concern with the possibility that their freedom of speech may be violated, using the interview that Yaccarino had with the Twitter owner weeks before as a basis for that. In fact, Twitter user @BillboardChris expressed the possibility that Yaccarino would push initiatives to limit users’ speech to appease advertisers.
“No doubt she’ll bring in advertising revenue in the short term, but she’s a long-term mistake,” he ended his tweet, to which Musk replied, “I hear your concerns, but don’t judge too early. I am adamant about defending free speech, even if it means losing money.”
On the other hand, Yaccarino commemorated the occasion with her first-ever tweet as Twitter’s new CEO. “Thank you @elonmusk! I’ve long been inspired by your vision to create a brighter future. I’m excited to help bring this vision to Twitter and transform this business together!”
“I’m not as prolific as @elonmusk (yet!), but I’m just as committed to the future of this platform. Your feedback is VITAL to that future. I’m here for all of it. Let’s keep the conversation going and build Twitter 2.0 together,” she ended.