Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) is coming closer to picking a CEO if rumors doing the rounds on Wall Street this morning are to be believed. Adam Bain, the firm’s head of revenue, is the top pick for the job, and it’s his choice to take it or leave it. Shares in the firm are up by more than 1 percent in this morning’s pre-market on the back of the rumors.
Adam Bain has been in charge of Twitter attempts to develop products that appeal to ad-makers and drive up sales since 2010 and the industry seems to think he’s done a good job. Wall Street may beg to differ. In the eyes of those holding shares through 2015, Mr. Bain’s attempts to drive sales have not been good enough.
Twitter board picks revenue boss
This morning’s story, which was picked up by sources that spoke to BusinessInsider, positioned Mr. Bain as not only the most likely pick for CEO, but someone who had basically been offered the job. “It’s Bain’s to accept or reject,” said the source quoted by Alexei Oreskovic, who authored the piece for BusinessInsider.
The source added that there were no more than three people from outside Twitter being looked at to fill the position. Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s co-founder, took control of the firm on a part-time basis on July 1 after Dick Costolo resigned as CEO.
With Adam Bain the most likely pick for the job, those invested in the firm seem fairly happy. Shares in Twitter were traded down by more than 2 percent on Wednesday’s market, but were up by more than 1 percent in pre-market trading on Thursday morning. In the last three months shares have lost more than 33 percent of their value.
Getting out of Twitter
Many leaders at Twitter, including ex-CEO Dick Costolo have left the firm in recent months, and many shareholders have followed them. This morning’s market may be up on the news of Adam Bain’s probable selection as CEO because those watching Twitter are looking for a sign that the firm is going to become more stable.
Mr. Bain may well be able to do that more quickly than an outside CEO, but he’ll also have to convince investors that his plan for revenue growth is better than his plan for revenue growth when he was under Dick Costolo. Mr. Bain may seek to blame Twitter the product for the problems at Twitter the company if he is selected.
Twitter is already working on rebuilding its platform in order to make itself more amenable to ads and revenue growth. It has made many investments in video over the last few months, and it’s ready to launch Project Lightning, or moments, to partner with big brands for big events.
Pacific Crest analyst Evan Wilson said that the average CEO hunt lasted for 180 days meaning that Twitter’s search should be over before the en of the year. He said that the “monetization roadmap is fairly clear (closer integration with direct response advertisers on app installs and retargeting).”
What the firm really needs, according to Mr. Wilson, is a leader who can make the product appeal to users. That has not been Mr. Bain’s role since joining the company from News Corp, but it’s one he’ll have to fill if he takes the job. There’s always other options if he spurns the post.