Square filed for its initial public offering today, and buried in the company’s boilerplate risk factors was a big one: CEO Jack Dorsey’s relationship with Twitter.
Here’s the relevant section on being able to depend on key management:
“Our future success is significantly dependent upon the continued service of our executives and other key employees. If we lose the services of any member of management or any key personnel, we may not be able to locate a suitable or qualified replacement, and we may incur additional expenses to recruit and train a replacement, which could severely disrupt our business and growth. Jack Dorsey, our co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer, also serves as Chief Executive Officer of Twitter. This may at times adversely affect his ability to devote time, attention, and effort to Square.
This has been a huge point of contention for both companies. Throughout the CEO search process for Twitter, Dorsey was considered a leading candidate, but his relationship with Square was seen as a point that could impede his ability to lead the company.
Of course, Dorsey also co-founded Twitter.
In the end, Twitter went with Dorsey, who will still be running both companies. It remains to be seen whether this will impede his ability to run Square, but the company is certainly acknowledging the possibility in its IPO filing.