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Silver Lake to invest $1 bn in Twitter; executive officer to join board: Here's all you need to know about PE firm

FP Staff

Twitter Inc on Monday reached an agreement with Elliott Management that lets Jack Dorsey stay as chief executive and adds three new directors a few days after Elliott's plan to push out the social media company's chief became public.

Twitter said it will name three new directors to its board in an agreement with activist investor Elliott Management and private equity firm Silver Lake, according to Reuters.

Silver Lake will invest $1 billion in Twitter.

Elliott's head of US activism, Jesse Cohn, and Silver Lake's co-chief executive officer Egon Durban, will join the social media site's board immediately and the company plans to appoint a third new director soon.

Twitter said in its statement that it would use the Silver Lake investment to help fund a $2 billion share repurchase program.

Egon Durban, co-CEO and managing partner of Silver Lake said in a statement released by Twitter: Twitter's revolutionary platform is a cornerstone of the public discourse. We are impressed by Jack's tireless work over the last few years to solidify the leadership team, improve the product and strengthen the Company. We are excited to partner with Twitter as an investor and a member of the Board. Jack is a visionary leader, and a critical force behind Twitter's ongoing evolution and growth. I look forward to working alongside the entire Board and the executive team to drive Twitter's long-term innovation and success.

Silver Lake Partners

Silver Lake Partners LP, the American private equity (PE) firm, was founded in 1999 by the quartet of Jim Davidson, Glenn Hutchins, Roger McNamee and Dave Roux, known as the 'Four Amigos'.

Davidson was a former investment bank managing director, Hutchins a buyout expert from Blackstone, McNamee a seasoned venture capitalist and also a touring musician and Roux is a former executive at Oracle.

A pioneer in technology investing, its portfolio of investments collectively generates more than $204 billion of revenue annually and employs more than 356,000 people globally.

It has over $43 billion in combined assets under management and committed capital and a team of approximately 100 investment and operating professionals located around the world.

In December 2019, the PE firm which manages over $43 billion in combined assets, named company veterans Egon Durban and Greg Mondre to the newly formed roles of co-chief executive officers, according to Reuters. In end-November, Silver Lake made a $500 million equity investment into Abu Dhabi-controlled City Football Group (CFG), the owners of English Premier League soccer champions Manchester City, with Durban joining CFG's board.

Joe Osnoss, who played key roles in many Silver Lake investments such as Nasdaq, Sabre and Virtu Financial, was named a managing partner.

The way the firm operates

Silver Lake has four arms which are focused on different strategies€" Silver Lake Partners pursues large-cap deals, Silver Lake Sumeru is into middle-market investments, Silver Lake Waterman specializes in growth-stage fundings and Silver Lake Kraftwerk invests in the energy and resource sectors.

The boss and his assistants

The business card of the boss or his assistant at Silver lake is the same. Both do not feature the job title. "The theory has always been either you are good enough to work at Silver Lake or you are not," said Jim Davidson, in an interview to Private Equity International in a 2018 interview.

Hands-on approach

In an interview to Business Insider, Hutchins explains his firm's hands-on approach to business: Most private equity firms are the equivalent of the coxswain in the crew race. They sit at the back and shout, 'Stroke! Stroke! And we get in the boat and row," he said.

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