Within a matter of weeks, Twitter cofounder Biz Stone is returning to the tech giant on a full-time basis.
In a new blog post, Stone says he was inspired to come back during a recent visit to Twitter. While making a guest appearance at a company function, Stone said he “felt the energy, and I was overcome with emotion. I realized in that moment that Twitter was the most important work of my life,” he said.
Upon his return, Stone said his primary focus will be to guide the company's “culture. I’m not replacing anyone at Twitter. Somebody mentioned I’m just filling the ‘Biz shaped hole’ I left.”
Since leaving Twitter in 2011, Stone has kept busy with several entrepreneurial projects.
In 2012, Stone and fellow Twitter cofounder Even Williams hatched Medium -- a blogging platform that has experienced strong adoption, but lacks a viable business model.
More recently, Stone c-founded Jelly -- which is part question-and-answer app and part search engine -- and a mobile platform named Super. In March, Stone sold Jelly to Pinterest for an undisclosed sum.
Showing new signs of life, Twitter recently reported strong user growth during the first quarter of 2017. The social giant said it added about 9 million new users -- making it the biggest quarterly bump in years.
“We’re really proud to report accelerating growth and daily active usage … up 14%, year-over-year,” Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told investors on an earnings call, last month.
Year-over-year, average monthly active users jumped 6% from 319 million to 328 million, during the first quarter. Among other factors, Dorsey attributed the rebound to better policing of trolls, bullies and other bad actors.
“We are seeing a significant decrease in the number of people experiencing abuse on Twitter,” Dorsey said. Twitter is also doing a better job as rolling out new products, and meeting the needs of average users, he added.
For the first quarter, Twitter reported revenue of $548 million -- down 8% year-over-year. Still, analysts were pleasantly surprised by Twitter’s user growth.