Twitter Chief Executive Jack Dorsey had a whirlwind day Tuesday, with the social network’s shares surging on a strong earnings report followed by an impromptu trip to Washington to mend fences with President Trump.
Dorsey and a contingent of Twitter executives flew to the nation’s capital for a 30-minute powwow with the president — mere hours after POTUS took to Twitter, his favorite social messaging tool, to accuse the tech giant of failing to give him and other Republicans a fair shake.
Trump’s early-morning tweet quoted a guest on Maria Bartiromo’s Fox Business Network cable show as saying the “best thing ever to happen to Twitter is Donald Trump,” before launching his attack.
“So true, but they don’t treat me well as a Republican. Very discriminatory, hard for people to sign on. Constantly taking people off list. Big complaints from many people,” the president tweeted to his nearly 60 million followers.
“Different names-over 100 M…..But should be much higher than that if Twitter wasn’t playing their political games,” he wrote before calling on Congress to intervene and for other companies to rise up and compete against Twitter.
“No wonder Congress wants to get involved – and they should. Must be more, and fairer, companies to get out the WORD!”
By 5 p.m. Tuesday, tensions seemed to have subsided, with Trump sharing a photo — on Twitter — of his “great meeting” with the 42-year-old bearded Twitter co-founder and chief executive.
“Lots of subjects discussed regarding their platform, and the world of social media in general. Look forward to keeping an open dialogue!” Trump wrote of the Oval Office confab.
Dorsey and Trump “had a constructive meeting … at the president’s invitation,” a Twitter spokesperson said. “They discussed Twitter’s commitment to protecting the health of the public conversation ahead of the 2020 US elections and efforts underway to respond to the opioid crisis.”
Earlier Tuesday, Dorsey told investors that the company’s campaign to clean up fake and abusive accounts has been working to attract users and boost advertising dollars — sending the stock up 18 percent.
Twitter, under pressure from lawmakers, has removed thousands of fake accounts that it previously blamed for a dip in users.
Wall Street had been predicting that the effort, which kicked off last summer, would lead to a loss of 2.2 million monthly active users in the first quarter of 2019. Instead, the service reported an increase of 9 million monthly active users in the period, to 330 million.
Twitter’s revenue rose 18 percent from a year ago, to $787 million, topping Wall Street’s expectations of $776.1 million.
“Ultimately, the company delivered a blowout quarter,” Wedbush Securities’ analyst Dan Ives said.
Shares closed up 15.7 percent, to $39.77.
Additional reporting by Mark Moore