October 7 update. The judge in charge of the case decided to adjourn the procedure until October 28, to allow time for the two parties, Musk and Twitter, to find an agreement. Otherwise, the trial will take place at the beginning of November. The social network fears that this delay will be for the billionaire, a “invitation to more craftiness“.
The trial was to begin on October 17. Elon Musk was very likely to be forced to buy Twitter at the promised price – 44 billion dollars – to be inflicted with potential penalties and to suffer a public affront. So, in exchange for the social network’s promise to drop his lawsuits, the boss of Tesla, whose fortune is estimated at 230 billion dollars, agrees to sign his check.
Back to negotiations
Last July, Elon Musk had broken the buyout agreement concluded the previous April. He accused the social network of having provided him with fraudulent information, in particular concerning the share of fake accounts, driven by bots, which the company would have estimated at around 5%. A clear undervaluation according to the billionaire, who underlines the importance of this data for the advertising potential of Twitter, his main source of income. Except that nowhere in the sales agreement was this issue mentioned, nor was this 5% volume present.
During the preliminary hearing, the judge made it clear to Musk that his obsession with fake accounts would have no place in the proceedings. To avoid disappointment, as well as the unpacking during the hearing of numerous embarrassing ‘poo’ emoji-based messages directed at the company’s CEO, Musk wants to return to the negotiating table.
A redemption full of uncertainties
The pill is still hard to swallow, as he still has to pay $54.20 per Twitter share, which fell to nearly $30 this summer. Childishly, the owner of Tesla and SpaceX therefore plans to destroy the social network after having bought it, to create a new one on its ashes called “X”. He also bought the domain name x.com. The whimsical billionaire evokes a “everything App”, an application that would do everything, a bit like WeChat, which he often cites as an example. This very popular tool in China allows you to chat, exchange documents, photos and videos, pay by phone, do microblogging like Twitter, video conferencing, etc.
Buying Twitter is an accelerant to creating X, the everything app
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 4, 2022
The last uncertainty remains the decision of Twitter. The social network will be crunched, of course, but it may want to hold out until the trial to inflict a final affront on the billionaire. Management nevertheless told its shareholders that its priority remained to close the transaction at $54.20 per share. Twitter employees are in any case immersed in the most total uncertainty. They will find themselves in the hands of a capricious and annoyed billionaire, who has sworn the loss of their working tool.