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article imageNew chiefs for Twitter, Skype

By Lee Labuschagne     Oct 6, 2010 in Business
Two major Internet companies, Skype and Twitter, both have new CEOs. Dick Costolo has taken over from Evan Williams at Twitter and Tony Bates, previously at CISCO, has been appointed as the CEO of Skype.
Evan Williams said on October 4 on his Twitter blog: "I have decided to ask our COO, Dick Costolo, to become Twitter’s CEO... I’ll be completely focused on product strategy."
He continued that "the challenges of growing an organization so quickly are numerous. Growing big is not success, in itself. Success to us means meeting our potential as a profitable company that can retain its culture and user focus while having a positive impact on the world. This is no small task. I frequently reflect on the type of focus that is required from everyone at Twitter to get us there.
"This led to a realization as we launched the new Twitter. I am most satisfied while pushing product direction. Building things is my passion, and I’ve never been more excited or optimistic about what we have to build."
Costolo told the BBC of his and his predecessor's approach to the business that "we both want it to be a long living independent company."
This approach may already be apparent in Twitter's revamped design and new advertising strategies.
It is reported that web tracking firm Comscore shows that with 165 million users, Twitter is currently the third most popular social networking site in the world behind Facebook and Windows Live Profile but ahead of MySpace.
Skype says Tony Bates has over 20 years of leadership experience in the communications and Internet industries, most recently as General Manager of Cisco’s Enterprise, Commercial and Small Business Division.
He was responsible for over $20 billion of annual revenue and managed over 12,500 employees worldwide. He was the driving force behind Cisco’s three key Enterprise architectures known as Borderless Networks, DataCenter and Collaboration.
Skype is not only a powerful global brand but also a global technology leader in Internet communications,” said Bates. “There are extraordinary opportunities ahead for Skype and I am eager to lead the company through this exciting juncture in its continuing transformation. I look forward to working with Skype’s management team and talented employees to engineer the next wave of game-changing products and services for our users.”
In addition to running Cisco’s Enterprise Division, has also served as General Manager of Cisco’s Service Provider Group, responsible for annual revenue of $10 billion. An expert on Internet technologies, Mr. Bates holds nine patents and has served on the boards of a range of technology companies including YouTube, the video sharing website; TokBox, a provider of online video conference services; BubbleMotion, a voice-based messaging and blogging service; and LoveFilm, an online video streaming and rental service
“We are thrilled to bring on Tony Bates as Skype’s new CEO,” said Miles Flint, Chairman of the company’s Board of Directors. “His record of achievement and significant operational and management expertise, cultivated over a distinguished tenure at one of the world’s preeminent technology companies, presents a unique opportunity for Skype that we are enthusiastic to embrace.”
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