FOR A MAN of creative genius, monkish calm and austere wabi sabi aesthetic, Jack Dorsey is remarkably good at making investors mad. Scott Galloway, a podcaster and business-school professor, has raged on air to have him sacked from Twitter, which Mr Dorsey co-founded and runs, and in which Mr Galloway owns shares. Wall Street showed similar apoplexy on March 4th when Square, his other co-creation, offered almost $300m to buy a weak music-streaming service founded by Jay-Z, the rapper who is one of Mr Dorsey’s buddies. In one day Square’s value plunged by over $7bn. As Vox, an online news site, put it: “WTF?”
And yet, like Elon Musk, another of his friends whom Wall Street loves to hate, Mr Dorsey has done rather well for his investors of late. A year ago, with activists such as Elliott Management (and Mr Galloway) baying for his blood at Twitter, the man dubbed a “part-time CEO” got stuck in. Since then the value of the social-media site has doubled to more than $50bn. That of Square, a digital-payments firm, has tripled to more than $100bn. (The chairman of The Economist’s parent company is a director of Square.) Moreover, the two companies have exemplified a powerful trend: that of Silicon Valley’s second-tier firms (think, as well, of Snap, Pinterest and PayPal…
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