Two top Twitter execs — Kayvon Beykpour, head of the group that builds the social-media app’s core features, and revenue product lead Bruce Falck — said they were fired by CEO Parag Agrawal.
Twitter is in the midst of a pending $44 billion takeover by mega-billionaire Elon Musk. Beykpour, in announcing his departure on Twitter, didn’t cite Musk’s imminent takeover as the reason for his exit. Rather, he said in a thread on Twitter, Agrawal had effectively terminated him.
“The truth is that this isn’t how and when I imagined leaving Twitter, and this wasn’t my decision,” he wrote. “Parag asked me to leave after letting me know that he wants to take the team in a different direction.” Falck, in a now-deleted tweet, also said Agrawal fired him.
In a memo to staff Thursday, Agrawal announced the departures of Beykpour and Falck and said “It’s critical to have the right leaders at the right time,” per the New York Times. In the memo, the CEO also said Twitter will freeze most new hiring and reduce discretionary spending — citing the company falling short of revenue and user growth goals — but added that the company does not currently plan layoffs.
Agrawal himself is expected to be out of a job in the event Musk, the world’s richest person, successfully closes the Twitter buyout. Musk expects to take over as interim CEO when the deal closes, CNBC reported, and he’s picked out a permanent chief exec to take the helm, per Reuters.
In his Twitter thread, Beykpour wrote, “While I’m disappointed, I take solace in a few things: I am INSANELY proud of what our collective team achieved over the last few years, and my own contribution to this journey.” The exec said he was “interrupting my paternity leave” to share the news that he is leaving Twitter.
As GM of Bluebird, Beykpour led a team of researchers, designers, engineers, product managers and customer operations staffers. Previously, he led Twitter’s consumer product team and was responsible for defining the company’s product strategy. Jay Sullivan, Twitter’s head of consumer product, will now oversee the Bluebird group.
Beykpour joined Twitter after the company’s 2015 acquisition of Periscope, a live video-broadcasting app he co-founded. Twitter shut down Periscope in March 2021, folding livestreaming features into the core app.
Prior to Periscope, Beykpour co-founded Terriblyclever Design, a development company that built the first mobile apps for universities like Stanford University’s iStanford and Duke University’s Duke Mobile. Following Terriblyclever’s acquisition to Blackboard, Beykpour ran the company’s mobile division and served on the executive management team for four years.
Falck, before joining Twitter in 2017, was CEO of ad-tech player Turn, which was acquired by Singtel/Amobee. Before that, he was COO of BrightRoll, a programmatic video ads platform, which was bought by Yahoo. He also spent eight years at Google, helping build and lead ad businesses including the Google Display Network, DoubleClick Bid Manager (DBM) and Google’s Advertising Exchange.
(Pictured above: Kayvon Beykpour)