Twitter- Still Going Strong despite Recent Business Hitches
The business troubles being witnessed at Twitter are ushering in another round of questions. However, viewed from the larger picture, these don’t seem to be in any way affecting the central role being played by this global Company on the world stage. From a business perspective, Twitter is doing badly following its botched sale.
But on the social media platform, it continues to be at the center of key global events currently taking place, shaping them more than ever before.
Center Stage in US Election Campaign
Twitter emerged as one of the most important social media platforms during the recently completed presidential election in the US. During the three presidential debates, it played an important role. It literally turned into the conversation hub with tweets going viral and the whole world was following.
The Brexit Fall-Out and Others
The Twitter platform has become an important updates source regarding the ongoing Mosul liberation, the war in Aleppo and more significantly the Brexit Fallout. Not be left out is the regular sports commentary and celebrity spats.
Twitter continues to provide unrivalled real-time glimpse into what is happening around the globe in a way that no other platform can.
Michael Jackson’s death more than seven years ago was first reported on Twitter, and social media can arguably be said to have propelled Obama to the top US political office. Twitter is not just powerful and relevant but it is your immediate news source.
Over the last 3 years, Twitter has been going through different stages of business grief and all of it under the public glare. What is emerging clearly is that no matter the kind of business turbulence, nothing seems to shake what Twitter began a decade ago. This is something that no social media appears to successfully duplicate. Twitter remains relevant as ever.
On Tuesday, Twitter announced a new feature designed to “Make Twitter Great Again.” Yes, that’s a stretch. However, in an ongoing fight against online harassment, hate speech and trolling, behavior that reached a saturation point during the 2016 election, Twitter is taking a stand. The company’s new anti-harassment tools expand a user’s ability to mute keywords, phrases and conversations. The keyword here is “mute,” not “block,” which means the tool doesn’t infringe on a user’s freedom of speech.
Still, expect to see an increase in online chatter about Twitter’s conversion to the dark side. Words like “Big Brother” and “thought police” are sure to be bandied about, and someone will no doubt decry Twitter’s anti-harassment tool as another example of the Left’s assault on free speech. When it comes to freedom of speech, there’s a prevailing logic that anything is acceptable, in any venue or platform, short of yelling fire in a crowded theater.
According to Wired, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo doesn’t want trolls on the platform, and he’s making it his top priority to accomplish that goal. Is the anti-harassment tool too easy for tech-savvy trolls and online reactionaries to circumvent? Some critics think so. Still, it’s a step in the right direction. Twitter’s rapid fire, real time commentary threads make it prone to abuse and hate speech. While some believe that no speech act is beyond the pale, hate and harassment have no place on social media.
Twitter executives are expected to announce layoffs very soon. Analysts expect that this social media company will announce an 8 percent cut before or during their quarterly earnings report, which is set for October 27th.
That 8 percent cut translates to around 300 Twitter employees. There has been no clear indication yet as to which departments will be the hardest hit, but most analysts expect the sales team to experience the most layoffs.
Just a year ago, Twitter also announced an 8 percent layoff around this same time. That was also the time Jack Dorsey, an original co-founder of Twitter, stepped in to become the company’s CEO. Dorsey also serves as CEO for the financial services company Square, Inc.
Twitter executives have not told the media if these cuts will affect their Periscope division. Periscope, which allows people to stream live videos, was bought by Twitter in 2015.
Twitter has been facing many challenges recently. Some of the major issues Twitter is trying to solve at the moment include increasing their user growth organically, dealing with harassment issues, and reigning in their spending.
Many stockholders were actually optimistic about Twitter’s prospects just a few weeks ago. Back then, there were major rumors circulating all around Wall Street about a takeover bid for Twitter. Twitter’s stock, which trades under the ticker TWTR, went as high as $24 at the beginning of October. Some of the companies said to be interested in acquiring Twitter included Microsoft, Google, Salesforce.com, and the Walt Disney Company.
However, since Salesforce.com and Disney have openly said they will not be buying Twitter anytime soon, the stock has plummeted in recent days. The stock is currently hovering around $17.
Social media company Twitter’s stock immediately rose 4 percent after releasing better than expected earnings for the third quarter. In addition to Twitter’s better than expected earnings, this company announced that it will layoff 9 percent of their total workforce.
Twitter earned $616 million in revenue in the third quarter. Analysts were expecting a revenue around $606 million. Also, this company adjusted 13 cents per share, which was four cents higher than analysts’ predictions.
This social media company has had trouble getting new monthly active users to join their site in recent years. This quarter the social media company added a decent 4 million monthly active users, which gives Twitter a total community of around 317 million active users. The company also said that their daily user growth was accelerating by 7 percent in the most recent quarter.
Earlier in the week, Twitter executives said they would laying off 8 percent of their workforce. Apparently that number rose by 1 percent since that date. This 9 percent layoff translates to 350 Twitter employees. Executives hope these layoffs will streamline certain areas of Twitter’s business so they can operate more efficiently in the future.
Twitter said that this layoff was a part of a larger restructuring project. The Twitter team wants to make more partnerships and reorganize their marketing and sales teams. They also hope this restructuring will help them reach GAAP profitability by next year.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told reporters he believes this quarter’s great numbers are attributable to the company’s focus on enhancing Twitter’s new feed, improving the response to harassment issues, and offering more live and streaming videos via Periscope.
Twitter’s stock (ticker TWTR) is currently hovering around $17.50.
The earnings release for giant social media platform, Twitter Inc. will be on Thursday, this week. To be precise, the time for the release of the report will be 4.00 a.m. PST. According to the company, the timing for the report has largely been influenced by analysts who said that other tech companies have slated their releases on the same day. They include Google, Amazon and Atlassian.
Break From Tradition
According to techcrunch.com, the early morning time has, however, not gone down well with some analysts who accuse the company of breaking from tradition. This is because most tech companies are used to reporting an hour or so after mid-day at the end of day trading. Analysts have been accustomed to that time and Twitter’s time is a little uncomfortable for some of them.
Job Cuts Announcement
There is high anticipation of the company’s earnings reports for several reasons. However, the main one is driven by speculation that the company may announce around 300 job cuts. According to unnamed insiders, the job cut announcement may come even before the release of the earnings report.
Last year, Twitter cut the same number of jobs it’s expected to cut this week. If it happens, the move will be widely considered as an attempt to relieve some of the financial pressures from the company’s recent losses and the fall of its share price for the last one year. There were expectations of the company’s acquisition but the companies that were expected to bid abandoned the process.
Struggling social media giant Twitter is reportedly planning a new round of layoffs as earnings continue to sag and the company struggles to adjust. The expected cutbacks,first reported by Bloomberg, come as the tech company’s attempts to find a buyer appear to have fizzled.
Twitter’s share price has fallen by 40 percent in the last year, user growth has stagnated, and the company has gone through a series of leadership and staff shakeups. Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s co-founder, returned to the company as chief executive in October 2015 and immediately initiated an 8 percent reduction in force.
Despite that cutback, the company has failed to turn around its fortunes. Recent reports at several publications indicate deep unease within Twitter at Dorsey’s leadership, especially his joint roles as chief executive of Twitter and Square, an online payment firm he founded. Several senior figures at Twitter have been poached by Alphabet, the parent company of Google, and Facebook, Twitter’s arch-rival.
Dorsey has been trying to offload Twitter to another firm that could tolerate more losses as the company seeks user growth. Despite hiring bankers to shop the company to potential buyers, Twitter was unable to convince executives at Salesforce and The Walt Disney Co. to seal a deal.
Bloomberg’s report indicates that Dorsey is planning another 8 percent cut to Twitter’s workforce, which would mean up to 300 employees would lose their jobs. A smaller headcount would help Twitter more easily pay its most talented engineers with stock-based compensation, something its declining share price has made increasingly difficult.
A full announcement on Twitter’s job cut plans is expected on Thursday, the same day the company reports its third-quarter earnings to investors.