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EntertainmentElon Musk Names Linda Yaccarino New Twitter CEO

Elon Musk Names Linda Yaccarino New Twitter CEO

Elon Musk has named a new chief executive of Twitter, just over six months after his controversial takeover of the social media company.

The billionaire said Linda Yaccarino, the former head of advertising at NBCUniversal, would oversee business operations at the site, which has been struggling to make money.

He said she would start in six weeks.

Mr Musk will remain involved as executive chairman and chief technology officer.

“Looking forward to working with Linda to transform this platform into X, the everything app,” he wrote on Twitter, confirming the decision a day after he had stoked speculation by writing that he had found a new boss without revealing their identity.

Mr Musk – who bought the social media platform last year for $44bn – had been under pressure to find someone else to lead the company and refocus his attention on his other businesses, which include electric carmaker Tesla and rocket firm SpaceX.

At NBCUniversal, Ms Yaccarino oversaw roughly 2,000 people, and was involved with the launch of its streaming service.

She joined the company in 2011, after 15 years at Turner Entertainment and has been credited with bringing the network’s ad sales operation into the digital future.

Her departure had appeared to take NBCUniversal by surprise. On Thursday, amid media reports that she would be headed to Twitter, the firm had told news outlets that she was busy preparing for an upcoming conference.

“Linda has made countless contributions to the company during her 12-year tenure, and we wish her the best,” the company said on Friday.

Ms Yaccarino will bring to Twitter a rich background in advertising, which the social media company relies on to make money and which has dropped sharply since Mr Musk’s takeover.

“If Twitter are looking to monetise better than they have been, then that would be the place to start and Linda would be the ideal person to make that happen,” said Claire Atkinson, chief media correspondent at Business Insider, who has followed Ms Yaccarino’s career for two decades.

“She’s the kind of person that I can imagine Elon Musk needs,” Ms Atkinson added. “She won’t be rolled over.”

Many big companies halted their spending on Twitter in the weeks after Mr Musk took charge, concerned about how their brands might be affected by changes he was making.

Mr Musk immediately fired thousands of staff, including people who had been tasked with dealing with abusive posts.

He has also overhauled the way the service authenticates accounts, charging for blue ticks in a move critics said would facilitate the spread of misinformation.

Mr Musk has acknowledged “massive” declines in revenue, though he told the BBC last month that companies were returning.

At an advertising conference last month, where Ms Yaccarino interviewed Mr Musk, she reminded him of the challenges he faced winning the industry’s trust.

“The people in this room are your accelerated path to profitability,” she said. “But there’s a decent bit of sceptics in the room.

“There’s people who cannot separate, they’re challenged by separating, the man, his opinions and the microphone he now owns.

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