If you’ve been following along, Twitter has been experiencing the corporate version of existential angst for quite some time already. After the heady days of it’s IPO of $26 a share, valuing the company at $14.2 billion, they’ve continually failed to monetise the platform successfully. Since 2013 shares have generally declined, and are currently available for $14.63 per share.
As a result, there have been regular talks about selling the company, with Google parent company Alphabet considered one of the front runners as weak revenue forecasts and declining ad revenue continues to disappoint shareholders.
However, an unusual item has made its way onto the agenda for the next annual shareholder meeting in May. Namely a proposal that Twitter “prepare a report on the nature and feasibility of selling the platform to its users.”
Board Of Directors Disapproves
The proposal was found by the companies proxy filing, but the board of directors, on behalf of the company, disagreed. They felt that preparing such a report would be a waste of resources.
They’d only have to prepare that report if the motion itself passes at the meeting, and by all accounts, this is pretty unlikely. Apart from anything else, every share of Twitter stock is a voting share, and this stock structure means that anybody who wanted a say would simply need to buy shares in order to vote on proposals, with one vote per share. (This is how the proposal gained enough traction to make it onto the agenda in the first place.)
By The Users & For The Users
It’s an interesting idea of course. What these users are suggesting is that if a group of users owned it, there wouldn’t be the same pressure to make quarterly growth, and instead they could just focus on improving the platform.
A very vocal minority of users are the driving force behind it, and they’re worried that because the company isn’t proving profitable enough, it might be sold and the platform “ruined” by new owners in pursuit of profit.
It’s a nice idea, but in a profit-driven economy, the truth is it’s probably not going to happen.