Elon Musk completes US$44B Twitter takeover, fires CEO and other top executives


Musk, who has stated he plans to chop jobs on the firm, additionally stated on Thursday he didn’t purchase Twitter to earn more money however ‘to attempt to assist humanity’

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Elon Musk turned Twitter Inc’s new proprietor on Thursday, firing high executives he had accused of deceptive him and offering little readability over how he obtain the lofty ambitions he has outlined for the influential social media platform.

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The CEO of electrical automobile maker Tesla Inc has stated he needs to “defeat” spam bots on Twitter, make the algorithms that decide how content material is offered to its customers publicly out there, and forestall the platform from turning into an echo chamber for hate and division, at the same time as he limits censorship.

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But Musk has not supplied particulars on how he’ll obtain all this and who will run the corporate. He has stated he plans to chop jobs, leaving Twitter’s roughly 7,500 workers fretting about their future. He additionally stated on Thursday he didn’t purchase Twitter to earn more money however “to attempt to assist humanity, whom I really like.”

Musk terminated Twitter Chief Govt Parag Agrawal, Chief Monetary Officer Ned Segal and authorized affairs and coverage chief Vijaya Gadde, based on individuals aware of the matter. He had accused them of deceptive him and Twitter traders over the variety of faux accounts on the social media platform.

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Agrawal and Segal have been in Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters when the deal closed and have been escorted out, the sources added.

Twitter, Musk and the executives didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.

The $44-billion acquisition is the end result of a exceptional saga, stuffed with twists and turns, that sowed doubt over whether or not Musk would full the deal. It started on April 4, when Musk disclosed a 9.2% stake within the San Francisco firm, making him its largest shareholder.

The world’s richest particular person then agreed to hitch Twitter’s board, solely to balk on the final minute and supply to purchase the corporate as an alternative for $54.20 per share, a proposal that Twitter was uncertain whether or not to interpret as one other of Musk’s hashish jokes.

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Musk’s supply was actual, and over the course of only one weekend later in April, the 2 sides reached a deal on the worth he advised. This occurred with out Musk finishing up any due diligence on the corporate’s confidential data, as is customary in an acquisition.

Within the weeks that adopted, Musk had second ideas. He complained publicly that he believed Twitter’s spam accounts have been considerably greater than Twitter’s estimate, revealed in regulatory filings, of lower than 5% of its monetizable day by day lively customers. His attorneys then accused Twitter of not complying along with his requests for data on the topic.

The acrimony resulted in Musk giving discover to Twitter on July 8 that he was terminating their deal on the grounds that Twitter misled him on the bots and didn’t cooperate with him. 4 days later, Twitter sued Musk in Delaware, the place the corporate is integrated, to power him to finish the deal.

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By then, shares of social media firms and the broader inventory market had plunged on issues that the Federal Reserve’s rate of interest hikes, because it seeks to combat inflation, will push the U.S. financial system into recession. Twitter accused Musk of purchaser’s regret, arguing he needed to get out of the deal as a result of he thought he overpaid.

Most authorized analysts stated Twitter had the strongest arguments and would probably prevail in court docket. Their view didn’t change even after Twitter’s former safety chief Peiter Zatko stepped ahead as a whistleblower in August to allege that the corporate didn’t disclose weaknesses in its safety and information privateness.

On Oct. 4, simply as Musk was set to be deposed by Twitter’s attorneys forward of the beginning of their trial later within the month, he carried out one other u-turn and supplied to finish the deal as promised. The Delaware choose gave him an Oct. 28 deadline to shut the transaction and keep away from the trial.

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Since then, Musk has indulged the deal hype. He walked into Twitter’s headquarters on Wednesday with a giant grin and carrying a porcelain sink, subsequently tweeting “let that sink in.” He modified his description in his Twitter profile to “Chief Twit.”

He additionally tried to calm fears amongst workers that main layoffs are coming and guaranteed advertisers that his previous criticism of Twitter’s content material moderation guidelines wouldn’t hurt its enchantment.

“Twitter clearly can’t change into a free-for-all hellscape, the place something could be stated with no penalties!” Musk stated in an open letter to advertisers on Thursday.

Musk has indicated he sees Twitter as a basis for making a “tremendous app” that gives the whole lot from cash transfers to purchasing and trip hailing.

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“The long-term potential for Twitter for my part is an order of magnitude higher than its present worth,” Musk stated on Tesla’s name with analysts on Oct 19.

However Twitter is struggling to have interaction its most lively customers who’re important to the enterprise. These “heavy tweeters” account for lower than 10% of month-to-month total customers however generate 90% of all tweets and half of world income.

Musk stated in Could he would reverse the ban on Donald Trump, who was eliminated after the assault on the U.S. Capitol, though the previous U.S. President Donald Trump has stated he gained’t return on the platform. He has as an alternative launched his personal social media app, Reality Social.

After Musk confirmed up, it turned clear that Agrawal was unlikely to maintain his job. “I don’t have faith in administration,” Musk stated in a single early submitting in regards to the deal, and the 2 executives exchanged some public swipes. In Could, Musk replied to a Twitter thread from Agrawal defending the corporate’s person metrics by tweeting again a poop emoji.

Textual content messages unveiled in the course of the lawsuit present that the 2 males had a contentious alternate early on in the course of the deal course of after Musk requested his followers whether or not Twitter was “dying.”

Agrawal confronted him through textual content. “You’re free to tweet ‘is twitter dying?’ or the rest about Twitter,” he wrote on April 9, “but it surely’s my duty to let you know that it’s not serving to me make Twitter higher within the present context.” Musk fired again, “What did you get completed this week?” After which: “I’m not becoming a member of the board this can be a waste of time.”



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