Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Twitter Annual Shareholder Meeting Was Today

Jack Dorsey, CEO,
Anthony Noto, CFO,
Vijaya Gadde, General Counsel
Twitter (TWTR)
Today, May 25, 2016, the Twitter Annual Meeting was held today at the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco, California. There was a turnout of about 60 shareholders. At last year's meeting, Jesse Jackson showed up, but he wasn't there for the meeting this year. On the stage were Jack Dorsey, CEO, Anthony Noto, CFO, and Vijaya Gadde, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary.

Jack Dorsey lead off the meeting showing a presentation of various tweets and videos. He also went over the five priorities for the company, including refining core services and safety. He mentioned the live streaming deal with the NFL.

Then Noto went over the financials. The business part of the meeting, run by Gadde,  took about 15 minutes, where Jack Dorsey and Hugh Johnston were elected to the Board of Directors to serve until the 2019 annual meeting. Also, the Name Executive Officer Compensation passed, the appointment of PriceWaterhouseCoopers as the accounting firm passed, and and the approval of the 2016 Equity Incentive Plan passed.

Then the fun part began: the question and answer period. The first shareholder asked how the expense for software engineers is shown on the financial statements (mostly R&D), and how the stock based compensation is shown (R&D).  Noto explained that the company currently doesn't use stock options; it only issues restricted stock.

Twitter Annual Shareholder Meeting
The same shareholder also asked what types of software the programmers use. Dorsey took that question and said that it has been a transition, starting with Ruby, then Java, Objective-C, then Swift. He said that several programming languages are used, and the programmers use whatever they need to get the job done.

The next shareholder came up with three new verified statuses. He had previously recommended three last year, two of which have been verified.

One young woman came up with a couple suggestions. One was having the ability to send money through Twitter. The other was having the ability to buy Twitter stock through Twitter. Dorsey said that they are looking into a money transfer system.

A shareholder asked about what the catalyst is for an increase in the stock price and both Dorsey and Noto emphasized the push for more live streaming in the areas of sports, entertainment, and news and politics.

When asked if they were open to a takeover offer or a partnership, the answer was essentially no.

Finally, the $3.6 billion in cash that the company has came up. Noto said that they have a couple of options: share buybacks and acquisitions. Management is regularly evaluation how the money should be spent.

Disclosure: Author owns TWTR.

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