Twitter, the Internet short message board / micro blogging site (a social media platform) is planning to float on the stock markets. Twitter is the third largest social media website after Facebook and Google+.
Twitter is estimated to be worth $15 billion. It filed with US regulators on 12th September 2013 to float on the stock exchange. Currently there is not a planned date for the IPO. Twitter is hoping to float on the New York Stock Exchange, rather than NASDAQ where most new tech stocks trade.
Until Google launched its own platform, Twitter was ranked as number two after Facebook.
Twitter has huge potential as a business. It has only recently started to introduce advertised / promoted posts on the platform. Millions of people use it, and unlike Facebook and Google+ it has many high profile celebrities as its users. For celebrities, Twitter provides a way to speak direct with their fans without having to go through managers, or having to employ web designers.
Twitter is all about conversation – instantly speaking out to millions of people and spreading news and ideas. Twitter is all public, unlike Facebook and Google+ where much of the content is made private.
Who owns Twitter?
Evan Williams is a co-founder of Twitter and also its largest individual shareholder. He owns 15 per cent of the business and will become a billionaire when the company floats.
Evan Williams also created Blogger, a blogging platform that is now owned by Google, and Medium, which is based on the Twitter idea but for people who want to say more.
Evan developed Pyra Labs, the company that developed Blogger. Pyra Labs was bought by Google in 2003.
Jack Dorsey is another co-founder, he is a web developer and businessman. It has not been disclosed what percentage of Twitter Jack owns, but it is thought to be a little less than Evan’s share.
Noah co-founded Twitter and also launched a podcasting company, Odeo, in 2007. He worked at Industrial Light and Magic and Macromedia’s former company, Macromind.
Biz Stone is the fourth co-founder of Twitter. He also helped build Xanga, Blogger, Odeo, The Obvious Corporation and Medium. He founded Jelly Industries where he is CEO.
Dick Costolo is Twitter’s CEO. He is the most senior of the board. He took over the CEO role from Evan Williams while Evan was on paternity leave. He co-founded FeedBurner and after Google bought the business in 2007 he became a Googler (Google employee). He left Google in 2009 to join Twitter. Costolo is on President Obama’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee.
Twitter has many investors, both individuals and corporations, which include, but not limited to:
- Brian Pokorny (Managing Partner of SV Angel)
- Marc Andreessen (co-author of Mosaic and co-founder of Netscape)
- Naval Ravikant (founder of Angellist, co-founde of Epinions.com and others)
- Greg Yaitanes (Film and TV director)
- Ron Conway (founder and Managing Partner of the Angel Investors LP funds)
- Chris Sacca (former Google employee and manager of Lowercase Capital)
- Kevin Rose (co-founded Revision3, Digg, Pownce, and Milk)
- Timothy Ferris (writer, author of The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere)
- SV Angel
- Bezo Expeditions
- Charles River Ventures
- Union Square Ventures
- Digital Garage
- Spark Capital
- Institutional Venture Partners
- Insight Venture Partners
- Morgan Stanley
- Kleiner Perkins, Caufield & Byers
- DST Global
- DFJ Growth
- T. Rowe Price