updated 05:31 pm EDT, Thu June 12, 2014
Rowghani ends two year stint to act as advisor, leaves cryptic Tweet after SEC filing
Twitter's Chief Operating Officer (COO) Ali Rowghani has stepped down from his position, moving into a lesser role in the company. In a filing with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Twitter reported that Rowghani was stepping down from the COO role effective today. The filing said that he would be acting in a strategic position to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
"Effective today, Ali Rowghani has resigned from his position as the Chief Operating Officer of Twitter, Inc. Mr. Rowghani will continue to be a Twitter employee, and act as a strategic advisor to the CEO," said Twitter.
The details of Rowghani's resignation aren't clear at this point. It is thought to be linked to a clash over control, and Rowghani's shrinking responsibilities. According to an article from Recode yesterday, Twitter has been looking to do a big reorganization of its top-level executives. Rowghani had seen some of his duties spread out amongst other employees. Recode suggests that the move was initially seen as a demotion for Rowghani. Twitter also has no plans to fill the position left behind, supporting the theory that the position had become a figurehead role.
"Twitter does not intend to hire a replacement for the COO role, and all of Mr. Rowghani's operating responsibilities will be assumed by other members of the Twitter management team," Twitter added in the SEC filing.
Even with the change in position, it appeared that Rowghani would be still be an employee. However, a tweet earlier today seems to announce his departure from the company. While it could be taken as a tweet of someone stepping away from the platform, replies from Twitter employees make it clear he is leaving. Replies came from the likes of CEO Dick Costolo and Design Lead Cennydd Bowles.
@ROWGHANI Thank you for being an incredible executive & partner. Twitter could not have succeeded without you.- dick costolo (@dickc) June 12, 2014
Rowghani worked at Twitter for four years, after coming to the team from Pixar. Tension had been building up in the company after he began selling off his Twitter shares in May. After a lockup of sales was lifted, Rowghani sold 300,000 shares of stock. Between June 6 and June 10, he sold another 74,600. Rowghani will depart Twitter with over two million shares remaining.