Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey earned $1.40 in 2019, flat from the year before (but up from zero in 2017) as the billionaire founder of the social media giant rolls out donations from the $1 billion he recently committed to coronavirus relief.
“At his own recommendation to the compensation committee and consistent with his compensation in 2018, Mr. Dorsey elected to forgo any compensation for 2019 other than a base salary of $1.40,” Twitter said in an SEC filing Wednesday. The filing said the buck forty “is a testament to his commitment to and belief in Twitter’s long-term value creation potential.”
It’s not uncommon for tech’s richest to forgo paychecks. Facebook founder-CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s salary last year was $1 – although the company paid $23 million on security for himself and his family.
According to the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires list, Dorsey is worth $3.9 billion.
Earlier this month, Dorsey announced he was donating $1 billion, or, he said, just under a third of his total wealth, to relief programs related to the coronavirus pandemic, in the form of shares in Square, a mobile payments company he founded and also runs. The shares went to a newly created limited liability company called Start Small with grants to beneficiaries recorded in a Google document that is publicly available. Donations so far include America’s Food Fund and Mayor’s Fund LA.
Charities backed by Dorsey, Rihanna and Jay-Z announced Wednesday they’re collectively donating $6.2 million in grants to organizations involved in coronavirus relief.
Three weeks ago, Twitter withdrew its revenue and profit forecast for the first quarter, citing the potential impact of the spreading coronavirus on advertiser demand. The shares have taken a hit but engagement is strong and last week Bernstein analyst Mark Shmulik upgraded the stock to ‘market perform,’ noting that it “sits at the fulcrum of news and conversation during this unprecedented global event” and that and that its revenue generating events “are just postponed, not lost.” Twitter announces quarterly earnings April 30.
Earlier in the year, Dorsey took some fire from investment firms Elliott Management and Silver Lake, which were pressing for his removal as CEO in part after he said he might move to Africa and run Twitter and Square from there. Dorsey scrapped those plans and a deal with the two shareholders gave each one a seat on the company’s board.