Insiders say Twitter will seek an IPO in 2014

An illuminating profile of Twitter CEO Dick  Costolo in the New York Times looking at his stewardship of Twitter since the three founders either left to focus on other projects, Biz Stone and Evan Williams now run incubator start-up incubator Obvious, or took more strategic roles as Jack Dorsey has done.

In amongst the background insights into Costolo, who is a former stand-up comedian, is a mention of a possible date when Twitter might seek an initial public offering and follow Facebook and LinkedIn to the markets.

The date for the IPO is said to be sometime in 2014 giving Twitter more time to grow and develop revenue streams.

The 2014 date also leaves it a wide enough margin between it coming to the markets and the problems Facebook and Zynga’s have faced with their disappointing IPO’s.

“Its next big step is to go public on the stock market, and insiders say the current goal is to have an initial public offering in 2014. Twitter’s social media twin, Facebook, has already gone public, of course — and, so far, Facebook stockholders have lost billions, at least on paper. Facebook’s troubled I.P.O. hangs over the technology industry as a cautionary tale of how investors can become star-struck.

“Mr. Costolo didn’t found Twitter. Jack Dorsey, Christopher Stone and Evan Williams did. But today Mr. Costolo is essentially running the business alone, and friends and colleagues say he is eager to build the company,” the New York Times reports.

Question is will  people buy shares in Twitter? That in part is going to come down to what happens during the next 12 months or so in terms of growing user and revenue numbers.

Most importantly will be how it can grow its revenue on mobile devices when even more or us will be spending more time accessing our social networking services via a growing selection of devices.

Twitter has already told us back in June that mobile revenues are now surpassing web revenues on many days and if it does goes to markets in 2014 it will have the advantage, over Facebook, of operating in a comparatively more mature mobile market.

The piece also shines a light on how Costolo works with founder Dorsey who left Twitter in 2008. Costolo bought him back last year and he is involved in strategic decisions. Costolo is said to look to Dorsey, often said to be a quieter character, for ideas and sometimes has to pull them out of him.

Dorsey has nothing but praise for Costolo and said he considered him to be one of Twitter’s founders.

“He’s had a dramatic impact on the company and the culture,” Dorsey told the NY Times.  ”He’s questioned everything we started with and made it better.”