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Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson explains why software developers are misunderstood and underutilized, defends company's 2020 value surge

Key Points
  • Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson has written a book, 'Ask Your Developer,' which highlights how software developers should be more integrated with corporate strategy decision-making.
  • Lawson said companies have had to accelerate digital transition plans by an average of six years because of the Covid-19 pandemic, based on Twilio research.
  • Twilio, whose market capitalization surged from $13 billion to about $55 billion in 2020, aims to be the world's 'leading customer engagement platform,' Lawson said.
  • U.S. regulators should crack down on the algorithms that drive 'what we as consumers see and read every day,' Lawson said.
Jeff Lawson
Abigail Stevenson | CNBC

A View from the Top is a Q&A series exclusively available on CNBC Pro. Alex Sherman will regularly speak with a business leader about decision-making, investing and industry news.

2020 wasn't all bad. Just ask Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson.

As companies had to rapidly adjust last year to serving customers remotely, Twilio's application communications products became essential for companies from Netflix to Uber to Nike to interact with customers. Investors noticed. Twilio's market capitalization surged from about $13 billion to $55 billion over the course of the year.

Now Lawson has written a book entitled 'Ask Your Developer.' Lawson told CNBC why he wrote the book, why cloud company valuations reflect the growing understanding of software's global power, and why he wants government regulators to crack down on social media algorithms that can lead to the spread of disinformation.

Here's the full Q&A: