The $44bn deal will give world’s richest man control of social media platform with more than 230m users
Source: The Gardian
Elon Musk has completed his $44bn takeover of Twitter, taking control of the company and reportedly firing several top executives, including the chief executive, Parag Agrawal.
The world’s richest man tweeted “the bird is freed”, in a reference to Twitter’s corporate logo, just hours before a court-ordered deadline to buy the business expired.
Shortly after taking the helm of Twitter, Musk reportedly ousted several senior figures, including Agrawal; Ned Segal, the chief financial officer; and Vijaya Gadde, the head of legal policy, trust and safety.
Agrawal and Segal were in Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters when the deal closed and were escorted out, Reuters reported.
Twitter confirmed the deal on Friday in a filing to the US financial regulator, disclosing the deal had closed on Thursday. Shares in the company have been suspended and will delist on 8 November, capping a chaotic saga that began when the billionaire first announced his plans to buy the company in April.
The firings followed news last week that Musk planned to eliminate nearly 75% of Twitter’s staff in an effort to pay down a debt burden that will have grown substantially since the acquisition, which is part-funded by borrowings of $13bn. Musk later dismissed those reports, telling employees he would not cut such a large portion of the staff.
A sense of confusion hung over the deal on Thursday night, however, with neither Twitter nor Musk immediately confirming the firings. Musk, who had earlier changed his Twitter bio to “Chief Twit”, did not mention the dismissals after the news broke.
Twitter now enters a new chapter, with questions hanging over what Musk plans to do with a platform that plays an outsized role in the political and media landscape due to its following among journalists, commentators, celebrities and politicians. Read more »