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Twitter’s Parag Agrawal is youngest CEO in S&P 500

Parag Agrawal was Twitter’s technology expert before he was named as the platform’s CEO and is now the latest India-origin person to lead a US tech giant.
Parag Agrawal was named Twitter CEO on Monday. ((AP/Twitter))
Updated on Nov 30, 2021 11:21 AM IST
By | Written by Meenakshi Ray, New Delhi

Twitter’s Parag Agrawal, who will succeed founder and chief executive officer Jack Dorsey, is now the youngest CEO in the S&P 500 elbowing Meta Platform Inc’s Mark Zuckerberg.

However, Agrawal is 37 and the same age as Mark Zuckerberg. Twitter has not disclosed Agrawal’s date of birth citing security concerns but said he was born later in 1984 than Zuckerberg’s May 14 birthday, according to Bloomberg.

“I don’t think the age thing is that big of a deal, especially for companies like this. It could be an advantage,” David Larcker, a professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, who studies CEO performance, told Bloomberg.

Dorsey, at 45, was already among the dozen youngest CEOs in the collection of the largest US companies.

Also read | Jack Dorsey steps down as Twitter CEO, company CTO Parag Agrawal to succeed

“The fact that Dorsey is stepping down from the board, so he’s not going to be like a shadow CEO, he must have real confidence in him,” Larcker also said.

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According to data compiled by Bloomberg, Berkshire Hathaway Inc CEO Warren Buffett is the oldest CEO in the S&P 500 at 91. The average age of a CEO among the 500 largest companies was about 58 years, the data show.

Also watch | Parag Agrawal to be Twitter CEO after Jack Dorsey quits: 5 things about Twitter chief

Data on S&P 500 companies measured over the last two decades by executive recruiter Spencer Stuart shows a small but steady increase in the age of the CEO. The average age of an S&P 500 director is 63, said Stuart.

Also read | Jack Dorsey lists 3 reasons to quit as Twitter CEO. One of them is Parag Agrawal

Parag Agrawal was Twitter’s technology expert before he was named as the platform’s CEO and is now the latest India-origin person to lead a US tech giant.

Parag Agrawal, educated in computer science and engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay and with a PhD from California’s Stanford University, joined Twitter in 2011. He became its CTO by 2017.

Also read | Who is Parag Agrawal, the new CEO of Twitter? 5 things about IIT-Bombay alumnus

As the head of technology at the firm, he oversaw machine learning and artificial intelligence, as well as the company's broad technical strategy. Agrawal was also head of the company's "Bluesky" push to create a more open and decentralised standard for social media.

"I recognize that some of you know me well, some just a little, and some not at all," Agrawal said in an email to employees at San Francisco-based Twitter.

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