Twitter is a global platform for public self-expression and conversation in real time. Twitter allows people to consume, create, distribute and discover content. Twitter is considered a microblogging and social networking platform on which users post and interact via "tweets" - 280 character limited posts. Tweets were originally restricted to 140 characters, but were increased to 280 characters on November 7, 2017.
Twitter was founded in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams. By 2013, Twitter was one of the ten most-visited websites in the world.
In the year ended December 31, 2018, Twitter generated revenue of US$3,042 million and made a profit of US$ 1,206 million, a considerable increase over the company's net loss in the year ended December 31, 2017 of US$108 million. In the same year, Twitter employed 3,920 people throughout its operations. Twitter usage metrics help it drive revenue for advertising and data licensing services. Twitter's average monetizable daily active users (mDAU) were 126 million for the three months ended December 31, 2018, an increase of 9% year-over-year. In the three months ended December 31, 2018, we had 321 million average MAUs, which represents a decrease of 3% from the three months ended December 31, 2017.
Twitter also operates Periscope, which it acquired in March 2015 for US$86.6 million. Periscope is a mobile application that lets anyone broadcast and watch video live with others. Periscope broadcasts can also be viewed through Twitter and on desktop or mobile web browsers.
Twitter is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TWTR.
Advertising services - Twitter generates most of its advertising revenue by selling "Promoted Products". Promoted Products consist of: Promoted Tweets (which are labeled as “promoted” and appear within a user’s timeline, search results or profile pages just like an ordinary Tweet regardless of device, and are pay-for-performance or pay-for-impression delivered advertising that are priced through an auction); Promoted Accounts (which are labeled as “promoted” and are intended to enable advertisers to grow a community of users who are interested in their business, products or services, and are pay-for-performance advertising that is priced through an auction); and Promoted Trends (which are labeled as “promoted” and appear at the top of the list of trending topics or timeline for an entire day in a particular country or on a global basis. Promoted Trends are priced on a fixed-fee-per-day basis). In the year ended December 31, 2018, advertising services accounted for 86.03% (or US$2,617 million) of revenue.
Data licensing and other - Twitter generates data licensing and other revenue by offering data products and data licenses that allows the company's data partners to access, search and analyse historical and real-time data on Twitter's platform. Twitter also generates revenue providing mobile advertising exchange services through its MoPub exchange (MoPub was acquired in September 2013 for US$350 million). In addition, Twitter operates a mobile ad exchange and receives service fees from transactions completed on the exchange. The company's mobile ad exchange enables buyers and sellers to purchase and sell advertising inventory and matches buyers and sellers. In the year ended December 31, 2018, data licensing and other accounted for 13.97% (or US$425 million) of revenue.
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