Twitter cofounder and CEO Jack Dorsey has backpedaled on his plans to move to Africa in light of the coronavirus outbreak. The move comes amid activist hedge fund Elliott Management’s push to oust Dorsey as Twitter’s chief executive – which is reportedly because of the Africa plan, at least partially.
Jack Dorsey addressed the move at a Q&A session at Morgan Stanley’s Tech, Media and Telecom Conference on Thursday, saying that while he still believes in the business opportunity on the African continent, he may made a “mistake” in tweeting out his plans to move there, and “should have provided more context about why.”
But Jack Dorsey said that he was reconsidering those plans.
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“However, with everything happening with the world, particularly coronavirus, I have to reconsider what’s going on and what that means for me and for the company,” he said, adding, “next time we give updates on this, I’ll explain all the ‘whys’ and give much deeper context.”
“I had been working on my plans where I’d work decentralized, as my team and I do when we travel, but in light of COVID-19 and everything else going on I need to reevaluate,” Dorsey said. “Either way we’ll continue to pursue opportunities in Africa.”
The bearded 43-year-old tech exec caused quite a stir in November, after he tweeted a tentative plan to move to Africa for as long as 6 months sometime this year and manage the company remotely. He later announced plans to build a more distributed, remote workforce at the company.
The outbreak of COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus, has caused tech companies to begin taking precautions. Twitter recently recommended that its employees around the world all work from home.
But the timing of Jack Dorsey’s cancelled plans is significant.
Elliott Management, the activist hedge fund that is now reportedly seeking to oust Dorsey from his position as chief executive, is said to have concerns over Dorsey’s plan to move to Africa. It stated concerns that Dorsey’s dual role as CEO of Twitter and Square, along with the planned move to Africa, was hurting his ability to manage the company, Bloomberg first reported.
Source: Business Insider