Here, some Twitter shareholders declared war Elon Musk dragging him to justice. But the richest man in the world rejects the conflict. Instead, he takes out the most powerful weapon out of him: money. His goal: to conquer Twitter once and for all. His proposal: buy all the shares of the social network at $54.20 per share, or $43.4 billion (39.77 billion euros) in total. An offer higher than the current capitalization of Twitter in 6,700 million. “This is my best offer and my final offer.“, proclaims in the official document that he sent on Thursday, April 14, to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the policeman of the American stock market.
Elon Musk takes off his mask
At the same time, Elon Musk wants to delist Twitter from the Stock Market. If the current management refuses, the almighty head of Tesla and Space X warns that “will reconsider its position as a shareholder“.
In premarket electronic trading, the stock soared 12.24% to $51.5. After Monday April 4, date to the quelle Elon Musk to révélé avoir acheté 9.2% des parts du réseau social, la valeur de l’action pris 17%, passing from 39.31 dollars to 45.85 dollars mercredi 13 avril Fence.
What will the management and shareholders of Twitter do, whom Elon Musk hopes to convince because of the added value it offers them? In a statement, Twitter said it had received “the unsolicited and non-binding offerof Elon Musk, and declared that he was going “to thesift through“, pour “determine the course of action you believe is in the best interest of the company and all of Twitter’s stakeholders“
With this offer, Elon Musk finally refuses to play the activist shareholder and prefers to directly take off the mask by claiming absolute control of Twitter.
For years, the billionaire has criticized the moderation policy of the social network, of which he is also one of the most followed users in the world, with 81 million followers, and also one of the most active. Buying Twitter would thus allow him to shape this world-renowned platform, which claims 212 million monetizable users per day, and which, according to him, violates freedom of expression, which is also a mantra of Donald Trump supporters in the United States. Joined.
ten surreal days
Elon Musk’s blitzkrieg on Twitter started just ten days ago. Monday April 4, Elon Musk announced to everyone’s surprise that it had acquired 9.2% of the capital of the social network, for about 2,900 million dollars, becoming its main shareholder. In his letter to the SEC, he specified that he had no intention of becoming an activist shareholder. But it is impossible to ignore that since January, which corresponds to the purchase of his first Twitter shares, the capricious businessman has multiplied criticism of the social network, accusing it of muzzling freedom of expression and openly criticizing its management by Parag Agrawal, the CEO from the past. November and the marginalization of its founder and emblematic CEO, Jack Dorsey.
The galery I wondered then : “Would Elon Musk prefer to invest in a well-known social network, despite growing pains, and thus “influence” the direction of an established company and platform, rather than create one from scratch?
Elon Musk did not wait long to confirm his interventionist will. That same night, he launched his first offensive. : a survey to find out if users want to be able to modify their tweets later. harmless? Not really. Because if it is an old and popular request among Twitter users who want to be able to correct their mistakes when they write in a hurry. It was fiercely opposed by Jack Dorsey’s former management due to potential abuses related to online harassment or misinformation. The founder had thus declared in 2020 that the button “Edit” I wouldn’t see “probably never” the day.
The board trap
On Tuesday, April 5, the day after the announcement of Elon Musk’s capital increase, Twitter offered its new first shareholder – also accused of possible price manipulation by the financial market police for comments made on the network social- a seat on the company’s board of directors.
CEO Parag Agrawal made the announcement in a tweet: “I am delighted to share that we are appointing Elon Musk to the board! Through conversations with Elon over the past few weeks, it was clear that he would bring tremendous value to our Board.” He explained. Elon Musk responded then, still in public: “I look forward to working with Parag and the Twitter Board to drive major improvements to Twitter in the coming months!”
But was it a victory for Elon Musk and an offer for Parag Agrawal, or was it a poisoned gift intended to contain the aggressiveness of the new first shareholder? Because by accepting a seat on the board of directors until 2024, Elon Musk thus avoided rising to more than 14.9% of the company’s capital. He certainly could have tried to influence the company’s strategy through the board of directors, and the striking force of him, thanks to his 80 million followers, is real, but most of him would still have had to validate his requests.
A weekend of provocative messages
For a few days, Elon Musk seemed to opt for the option of pressuring the board of directors by massively “trolling” the social network. On Thursday he posted a “meme” with a famous photo of him holding a joint in a halo of smoke, with the caption: “IThe next Twitter forum is going to breakHe also agreed to meet with Twitter employees for a question-and-answer session, as if he were the company’s new leader.
On Saturday, he went even further in the pressure. “Is Twitter dying?he asked, illustrating his point with the fact that most of the social network’s “super accounts” – the ones with the most subscribers like Barack Obama, Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Lady Gaga… – rarely post content.
Even more of a troll, Elon Musk posted two more tweets over the weekend, which must have stuck in Parag Agrawal’s throat. The first was a survey, with the options “yes” or “of course” to the question “Should the ‘w’ be removed from Twitter?“. In the second, he suggested to “turn Twitter headquarters in San Francisco into a homeless shelter“, car “nobody goes there anyway” [sic].
And finally, Elon Musk, again, changed his mind. On Monday, April 11, he refused his seat on the board of directors. And not in the most elegant way: According to a message from CEO Parag Agrawal, the world’s richest man according to Forbes he simply stood up to the leaders, when he had publicly hinted that he would sit down.
“Elon’s appointment to the board was supposed to take effect on April 9, but Elon told us the same day that he would not be joining.Agrawal wrote, before adding: “Elon is our largest shareholder and we will remain open to his ideas.“. An hour after the message from the CEO, the director in question was content to respond by posting the emoji”giggle“…no further comments.
On Tuesday, April 12, some shareholders dared to declare war on him, filing a complaint with the financial market regulator. Their complaint: They accused Elon Musk of declaring the 5% threshold crossing to the SEC 10 days late, causing financial damage to shareholders who sold their shares during this period, and allowing Musk to scale capital further by taking advantage of the low share value. There is no doubt that this proposed purchase of Twitter should allow these shareholders, if they take pole, to recover.