Musk to address Twitter staff amid buyout turmoil

Musk to address Twitter staff amid buyout turmoil
Billionaire Elon Musk will answer to Twitter employees who are unsure if he will complete his buyout of the social networking website
2 min read
Elon Musk shocked the tech world with an unsolicited buyout bid in April [Getty]

Elon Musk is set to field questions Thursday from wary Twitter workers eager to know if he intends to complete his turbulent $44 billion buyout bid and roll back limits for what people can say on the platform.

In his first meeting with staffers roiled by his move to buy the company, he is slated to answer pre-submitted queries for about an hour that will run the gamut from remote work policies to financial strategy.

The billionaire Tesla owner has already made comments on how he'd run the platform -- including lifting Donald Trump's ban -- but his words will this time be addressed directly to workers' concerns.

"This clearly is not the 'cookie cutter' typical all-hands meeting as this global soap opera between Musk and Twitter has taken many twists and turns," tweeted analyst Dan Ives. "Lots of questions for Musk."

A would-be owner addressing the troops of a company he or she wants to buy is a routine part of the merger playbook, but Musk's bid has been anything but ordinary.

He shocked the tech world with an unsolicited buyout bid in April for the platform that is a key exchange for news, entertainment and politics.

The board eventually came around to supporting his $54.20 per share offer, but since then he has cast doubt on the deal but clashing with the firm's leadership over user numbers.

The Wall Street Journal, citing a person familiar with the matter, reported late Wednesday that Musk was expected to confirm his desire to own Twitter.

Live Story

He was also expected to address his recent comments seeming to be critical of remote work -- a key issue in pandemic re-shaped office culture -- but also things like advertising and subscriptions, the paper reported.

Notoriously mercurial Musk could of course surprise workers during his comments, and he has already kept employees and Wall Street on edge over how the buyout saga will end.

The proposed sale has stoked protest from critics who warn his stewardship will embolden hate groups and disinformation campaigns.

US securities regulators have also pressed Musk for an explanation of an apparent delay in reporting his Twitter stock buys.

For his part, Musk has repeatedly raised questions about fake accounts on the platform, saying on Twitter he could walk away from the transaction if his concerns were not addressed.

Ahead of the meeting, Twitter stock was down slightly to just under $38 per share.