Dick Costolo, Twitter CEO – India A Key Business Market In The Next Five Years

Dick Costolo CEO at Twitter states that India is a key business market after the company’s shares jumped 35% to $51.20 on the New York Stock Exchange


Twitter had a strong earnings in Q2 2014. Not only has it made money but the ongoing criticism of failing to lure users has also taken a back seat. In fact the markets had expected Twitter to lose a penny per share on revenue of $283.07 million.

Twitter said that it had an average of 271 million monthly active users, compared to 255 million in the first quarter of this year. Twitter also has 211 million active users on mobile which represents 78% of all active users. This also means an increase of 29% for mobile on year-over-year.

twitter q2 2014

As you see in the above user growth chart, it clearly shows that International market beyond US is where the future lies for Twitter. Though Twitter rarely talks about individual country numbers but emerging markets such as India play a big role.

And this was quite evident when Dick Costolo CEO at Twitter spoke to Mint a day after the company’s shares jumped 35% to $51.20 on the New York Stock Exchange. “There’s never been a better time than the last quarter for an Indian to be on Twitter—from the Lok Sabha election and how Narendra Modi won the #TwitterElection; to all the major cricket tournaments that integrated extensively with Twitter such as the Indian Premiere League and ICC World T20,” Costolo said.

One of the fastest growing markets in the world for Twitter, India is today “a vital business market” in the next five years for Costolo. This is also the reason why we have seen Twitter India beefing up its operations in the country, over the last year, by hiring newer talent and media, brand partnerships.

Though India is still not a big revenue generation market, Costolo added that Twitter is looking to bring its extensive advertising platform to the country. “We are looking at bringing our advertising platform to India but the primary focus is delivering many more user experiences.”

Twitter had, time and again, said that a country like India throws a distinct challenge for it to make bigger advertising revenues since the reach has been questionable in the country. However partnerships with ZipDial to bring celebrity tweets on feature phones, operator tie ups, have been some of the interesting to ways to reach out to the larger audience of the country.

Twitter’s ongoing partnership with IPL, integrating Twitter with TV and moreover the way it leveraged the 16th General Elections are some of the commendable initiatives in India.

It wouldn’t be surprising if Costolo were to meet Narendra Modi, like Sheryl Sandberg, COO Facebook did in her recent visit to India. Social networking giants can’t ignore India at a time when the country is seeing a huge potential in mobile and with a PM who himself has set benchmarks in the country for his use of social media and integrating it with good governance.