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Twitter names former Goldman executive Noto as CFO Add to ...

Twitter Inc. named Anthony Noto as CFO, putting in charge of finances the well-regarded former Goldman Sachs executive who led its successful November IPO.

Twitter shares rose as much as 4.8 per cent after the messaging service announced its latest upper-management shakeup. The previous CFO, Mike Gupta, was named senior vice-president of strategic investments on Tuesday.

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Twitter has reported lacklustre user and usage growth for the last couple of quarters and its stock price has nearly halved in the last six months.

Last month, Twitter chief operating officer Ali Rowghani, who had been responsible for the company’s efforts to revive flagging user growth, departed after clashing with chief executive officer Dick Costolo over whether he should continue to oversee product innovation, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Chloe Sladden, vice-president of media, also departed recently.

Hudson Square analyst Daniel Ernst said Mr. Noto’s experience as CFO at the NFL should help Twitter gain more ground in television and advertising.

“He just brings a different skill set. A set that really has very high-level view of the competitive landscape, he understands very well what the investment community is looking for given his previous role,” Macquarie Research analyst Ben Schachter said.

Mr. Gupta, who joined Twitter in 2012 from social gaming company Zynga Inc, and Mr. Noto will take up their new roles within 30 days, Twitter said in a filing.

Mr. Noto, 46, a former Army ranger and National Football League executive, started as an analyst at Goldman and later became a managing director in the investment firm’s technology, media and telecom investment banking group.

Mr. Noto, who was among a number of analysts who touted stocks like Webvan and eToys that collapsed during the 2000 dot-com bust, won plaudits for netting Twitter’s coveted IPO in 2013 and handling its smooth market debut. Goldman told employees in a May memo that Noto was departing.

Noto will receive an annual salary of $250,000 (U.S.) and one-time restricted stock options of 1.5 million shares. As of Monday’s close, those options were valued at $61.5-million.

“I could not be more excited about joining the @Twitter team & helping them reach every person in the world,” Mr. Noto tweeted after the announcement.

Twitter went public in November at $26 a share. The stock rose to a high of $74.73 in December.

Shares rose as high as $42.95 on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday before easing back to $42.71 by late morning.

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