Twitter has a new CEO: Parag Agrawal, who’ll be taking over for Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, the longest-serving chief executive in the company’s 15-plus-year history.
Agrawal isn’t the most well-known of names either inside or outside of Twitter. He’s been with the company for over a decade, though, working his way up from an engineer to become its top executive (and a close friend of Dorsey’s). Agrawal first started at Twitter back in October 2011 with a focus on ad products, and he became the first recipient of the company’s “Distinguished Engineer” title. He was later appointed chief technology officer in October 2017, during which time he’s jumped in to address high-profile problems (like a large-scale password security issue) and take on some of the company’s bolder initiatives (like decentralization). But despite that long tenure, Agrawal, who is 37, hasn’t spent much time in the public eye — something that will immediately change with his new role.
That said, there are a few cues from Agrawal’s history as CTO that could indicate where Twitter might go next under his leadership. Agrawal is the fourth person to take the reins at Twitter, after Dorsey (who led the company from 2006 to 2008, and again from 2015 until now), Evan Williams (who co-founded Twitter alongside Dorsey and served as CEO from 2008 to 2010), and Dick Costolo (Twitter’s former COO, who served as CEO from 2010 through 2015).
In his time as CTO, one of Agrawal’s biggest projects has been his overseeing of the company’s decentralized Bluesky platform, which was first announced in December 2019. Intended as an “open and decentralized standard for social media” that Twitter itself could eventually transition to using, Bluesky has been one of the more dramatic ideas for Twitter’s future and a pet project of Dorsey’s.