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Twitter exodus continues as platform partnerships of South Asia quits

Twitter’s jolting journey seems far from over as Ravi Bhaskaran, the platform partnerships head of South Asia, quit the micro-blogging platform on Wednesday.

tech Updated: Dec 15, 2016 13:17 IST
Anirban Ghoshal
Anirban Ghoshal
Hindustan Times
Twitter,Twitter India,Twitter exodus
Twitter’s jolting journey seems far from over as Ravi Bhaskaran, the platform partnerships head of South Asia, quit the micro-blogging platform on Wednesday.(Reuters)

Ravi Bhaskaran, Twitter’s Platform Partnerships Head, South Asia, quit his position on Wednesday.

“Feeling bittersweet! Very grateful for the opportunity to play a key role in building/scaling @TwitterIndia business from its early days! End of an era! Incredibly proud of what we achieved and how we did it,” he tweeted hinting an end to his stint at the Jack Dorsey-led company.

The resignation comes soon after Rishi Jaitley, ex-vice-president of Asia Pacific, Middle East North Africa at Twitter, and Parminder Singh, managing director of West Asia and north Africa and Southeast Asia resigned from their posts.

Karen Stocks, who led Twitter’s division in Australia, had also resigned days after Jaitley’s resignation.

Hindustan Times had earlier reported that the Twitter India head’s exit is the beginning of a larger exodus.

“Rishi Jaitly’s resignation is possibly just the beginning of the end of the current leadership in India and more resignations might follow,” a person in know of the developments said.

Experts have claimed that the exits were linked to pressure of generating higher advertising revenue from India.

“Some people who left wanted to make some changes to Twitter which they thought would help in bringing in digital advertising revenue,” a source said.

“That would have changed Twitter’s identity – something that the board didn’t want.”

According to Greyhound Research, the digital advertising market in India is currently worth around Rs 7,000 crore – 75% of which lies with Google and Facebook.

Twitter, along with dozens of other digital advertising platforms such as InMobi, has struggled to get a share of the remaining 25% of the market. The micro-blogging platform’s share of the ad wallet is in single-digits.

“Twitter has one product they go to the market with, which is not enough. Facebook has 10 different formats. It is difficult to promote rich media on Twitter,” said Prashant Puri, CEO and co-founder of Adlift.

However, this might not be the end of the exodus for the company as it struggles to find its footprint in the technology industry.

“More exits may come as the situation doesn’t look good,” a source in the know of things told HT.

Meanwhile, another blow to the platform came after US President-elect Donald Trump’s team left it off the invitation list for a meeting of technology company executives on Wednesday, claiming that the company was too small.

The company had earlier said that it would cut 9% of its global workforce, affecting more than 300 employees as part of a broader restructuring. It has also been in talks with various companies for a possible stake sale.

First Published: Dec 15, 2016 13:15 IST