Twitter’s IPO will define Social Media, Not Facebook

News | 25th Oct

Following the hype surrounding Facebook’s ‘Initial Public Offering’ (IPO), it left little room for any other web news.

Written by Kaye Neylon

This month saw speculation surrounding Twitter’s IPO and the likelihood of public interest surpassing that of Facebook’s IPO announcement in May this year.

May 2012 marked the biggest day in Facebook’s history. With almost every investment banker clamouring to purchase the company’s shares, some analysts called this ‘one of the most defining moments of a new Internet IPO movement’.

Since May, Facebook’s share price has spiralled from its opening value of $38 (£23.54) to around $20 (£12.40), and is showing little sign of improving any time soon.

This crash has caused other Web companies to freeze their plans to go public.

The IPO which should have defined a new Web era, instead became a black mark, overshadowing an impressive growth in social networks, collation of news and location-based services such as Foursquare, SCVNGR and Facebook Places.

Taking these factors into consideration, Twitter has now positioned itself as possibly the most important social network in the world. While it may not have attracted 1 billion users like Facebook, what sets Twitter apart is its reputation.

News of the assassination of Osama Bin Laden was broke first via Twitter. As have many of the world’s biggest stories.

Twitter CEO, Dick Costolo, announced earlier this year that the company has reached 400 million tweets per day, doubling its 200 million figure 11 months earlier. This growth has obviously prompted financial growth, with many businesses paying for ‘Sponsored Tweets’.

Research firm, eMarketer, say Twitter’s annual revenue is likely to hit £184 million this year, almost doubling to £348 million in 2013.

Twitter is currently in the process of developing its relationship with its mobile users. ‘Sponsored Tweets’, paid for messages purchased by advertisers, are attracting a lot of traffic. This could see Twitter generate almost £300 million from smartphones and tablet devices alone.

This validation could be just what Web companies need to go public.


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