Twitter has finally found a new CEO in Linda Yaccarino, a top advertising executive, as the platform aims to overcome the challenges it has faced since Elon Musk’s $44 billion acquisition last year. Musk himself handpicked Yaccarino to take over the day-to-day operations of Twitter, which has seen mass layoffs and the return of controversial figures since his takeover. The appointment of Yaccarino, a highly respected advertising expert, comes at a critical time when Twitter is struggling to maintain its highest-paying advertisers who are avoiding association with conspiracy theorists and far-right content creators that Musk has previously supported on the platform.
Musk teased the hiring of a new Twitter CEO via Twitter, announcing that he had appointed a woman to take over as the new boss of Twitter and its parent company, X Corporation, without revealing her identity. Yaccarino’s departure from NBCUniversal, where she previously had a senior role in advertising and led a team of 2,000 people, sparked speculation that she would replace Musk.
Yaccarino’s primary focus as the new CEO of Twitter will be on business operations and transforming the platform into an all-encompassing app called X, similar to China’s WeChat, which combines social media, messaging, and mobile payments. Musk will remain overseeing the design and technology aspects of Twitter. Wall Street has expressed frustration over Twitter diverting Musk’s attention from his other businesses. Analysts believe that Yaccarino is precisely what Twitter needs to rebuild trust with advertisers and bring back prominent brands, but acknowledge that the new CEO will face considerable challenges.
Musk’s controversial actions on the platform, including staff terminations, reinstating far-right figures, journalist suspension, and introducing fees for previously free services, have drawn considerable criticism. Yaccarino’s hiring represents Musk’s belated fulfillment of his promise to step down from Twitter, as decided by the results of a Twitter poll in which the majority voted for him to leave.