Slimmed-down Elon Musk carries KITCHEN SINK into Twitter HQ as he changes his profile to ‘Chief Twit’, vows to cut 75% of staff and close the $44BN deal by Friday – as new report reveals ‘absolute decline’ in users
- Elon Musk posted a video of himself carrying a sink into the social media network’s San Francisco office on Wednesday
- He captioned it: ‘Entering Twitter HQ – let that sink in!’ – and changed his Twitter profile descriptor to ‘Chief Twit’
- It comes ahead of a court-imposed deadline to close the $44 billion takeover deal by Friday
Elon Musk fueled rumors he’s closed the deal to buy Twitter after sharing a video of himself carrying a sink into its San Francisco headquarters.
The world’s richest man shared the clip Wednesday afternoon, which he captioned: ‘Entering Twitter HQ,’ let that sink in.
Musk changed his Twitter profile’s location to ‘Twitter HQ’ and his biography to ‘Chief Twit,’ two days ahead of a court-ordered deadline to complete the $44 billion takeover.
It comes a day after Musk made a vow in a video conference call with bankers, who are helping fund the deal, that he would close the takeover deal before the end of the week.
Twitter’s stock price has soared in recent weeks and closed at $53.35 on Wednesday – close to the $54.20-a-share first offered by Musk for the firm in April.
Musk, 51, looked happy and healthy as he strutted in to what’s believed to be his newest purchase. He recently lost 20 pounds as a result of an intermittent fasting diet.
Led by Morgan Stanley, the banks have finished putting together the final credit agreement and are in the process of signing the documentation, marking one of the last steps in providing $13 billion towards the deal.
But the imminent deal comes amid a gloomy report which found Twitter has suffered an ‘absolute decline’ in users since the pandemic, with ‘heavy tweeters’ making up less than 10 percent of accounts.
Musk tweeted a video of the stunt which he captioned: ‘Entering Twitter HQ – let that sink in!’
Musk has changed his Twitter profile location to ‘Twitter HQ’ and his descriptor to ‘Chief Twit’ ahead of a court-imposed deadline to close his $44 billion takeover deal by Friday
On Wednesday, Twitter’s chief marketing officer sent a memo to employees to inform them that Musk would be visiting the San Francisco headquarters this week to address staff, Bloomberg reported.
‘Elon is in the SF office this week meeting with folks, walking the halls, and continuing to dive in on the important work you all do,’ the memo read.
‘For everyone else, this is just the beginning of many meetings and conversations with Elon, and you’ll all hear directly from him on Friday.’
He is widely predicted to embark on a huge cull of Twitter’s famously-woke staff, with a Washington Post report touting a possible 75 per cent reduction in its 7,500-strong workforce.
Musk has also vowed to take a far lighter touch on suspending users who break Twitter’s rules on hate speech, having declared himself a strong believer in free speech.
The billionaire has found himself in hot water previously for some of his views, including comments on transgender issues.
In 2020, he tweeted that ‘pronouns suck’ – then hastily deleted the post and said: ‘I absolutely support trans, but all these pronouns are an aesthetic nightmare.’
He has also voiced support for Republican Florida governor Ron DeSantis, who tabled the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Musk’s transgender daughter, Vivian Jenna Wilson, cut ties with him earlier this year and said she ‘no longer [lives] with or wish to be related to my biological father in any way, shape or form’.
Elon Musk’s 18-year-old daughter Vivian, who is trans, cut ties with her father and told a California court she ‘no longer wished to be related’ to the billionaire Tesla founder ‘in any way’
Vivian has a twin brother named Griffin, and the pair also have triplet siblings, Kai, Saxon, and Damian. Vivian and Griffin are seen with Musk and his second wife Tallulah Riley in 2010
Delaware Chancery Court Judge Kathaleen McCormick previously ordered Musk to close the deal to buy Twitter by 5pm on Friday, October 28, warning that otherwise a new trial date would be set in the firm’s lawsuit seeking to force the sale.
Musk cut a slimmed down figure as he sauntered into the social media giant’s HQ with the sink.
In July, the billionaire packed on more weight during a trip to the Greek holiday island of Mykonos.
Musk looked markedly chubbier as he frolicked on board a yacht with friends Ari Emanuel and Sarah Staudinger, an American fashion designer & founder of the Staud fashion brand.
Musk looked noticeably slimmer today than during a trip to the Greek island of Mykonos in July
The billionaire appears to have followed a strict weight-loss regime since his holiday in Europe
Musk wore a short sleeved t-shirt in an apparent effort to show off his dramatic weight-loss
He credited ‘fasting periodically’ for his slimmer physique and said in August that it helped shed 20lb from his ‘unhealthy peak weight’.
Twitter’s stock also inched closer to Musk’s $54.20 per share buyout offer today, signaling that investors finally expect the deal to go through.
The price was $53.35 when the market closed – a near seven-month high which is the closest they have come to Musk’s offer since it was announced in mid-April.
In the six months of dramatic back-and-forth since Musk announced his bid, Twitter initially resisted the deal.
The company also sued the world’s richest man after he announced plans to abandon his offer on concerns about spam accounts on the platform.
Twitter shares dropped as low as $32.50 in July.
Musk’s $54.20 bid was partly a joke allusion to ‘420’, which is a reference to marijuana.
Twitter’s share price hit a seven-month high as it edged closer to Musk’s $54.20 buyout offer
In the six months of dramatic back-and-forth since Musk’s bid, which Twitter initially resisted
A takeover could be fateful for Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, who has fallen out with Elon Musk
TIMELINE OF ELON MUSK’S CHAOTIC ATTEMPT TO TAKEOVER TWITTER
April 2: Musk announces that he owns 9.2 percent of the company, making him its largest single shareholder
April 14: Musk offers to take Twitter private at $54.20 a share, valuing the company at $44billion
April 25: Twitter accepts Musk’s offer
April 29: Musk sells $8billion in Tesla shares to finance deal
May 13: Musk says Twitter deal is on hold pending a review of bot accounts
May 26: Musk is sued by Twitter for stock manipulation during takeover
July 8: Musk says he’s backing out of the deal.
Twitter sues, trying to force him into seeing it through.
October 4: Musk proposes again to go ahead with the deal at the original price
October 17: Proposed trial date in Delaware
October 26: Musk visits Twitter HQ with a sink, updates his bio on the site to ‘Chief Twit’ and sets his location to Twitter HQ
Earlier this month, Musk proposed to proceed with his original $44 billion bid, calling for an end to a lawsuit by the social media company that could have forced him to pay up, sending Twitter shares 24% higher.
Equity investors including Sequoia Capital, Binance, Qatar Investment Authority and others have received the requisite paperwork for the financing commitment from Musk’s lawyers.
The deal could prove fateful for Twitter CEO Parah Agrawal, who feel out with Musk earlier this year.
Messages between the pair were published in a court filing an revealed how their initially cordial relationship turned sour.
After several meetings, Musk posted his notorious tweet which asked ‘is Twitter dying?’
Agrawal was frustrated by the tweet and accused Musk of ‘not helping’ make the platform better.
His position could be in jeopardy if and when Musk takes the helm.
Meanwhile, Twitter staffers penned an open letter this week protesting Musk’s alleged plans to lay off up to two-thirds of the company’s employees after completing the deal.
In the scathing note circulated Monday, staffers called the prospective layoffs ‘reckless’ and a ‘transparent act of worker intimidation.’
An unpublished draft of the letter read: ‘Elon Musk’s plan to lay off 75% of Twitter workers will hurt Twitter’s ability to serve the public conversation.
‘A threat of this magnitude is reckless, undermines our users’ and customers’ trust in our platform, and is a transparent act of worker intimidation.’
A judge set Musk, the world’s richest man, a deadline of Friday afternoon to close the deal
The letter sent by staff earlier this week also demanded Musk, if going forward with the deal, commits to preserving Twitter’s current headcount.
It also requests Musk, a notorious libertarian who has demonstrated a preference toward the right in recent months, does not discriminate against employees based on their political beliefs.
The letter instead demands Musk commit to ‘fair’ severance policies and more transparent communication about working conditions – while asserting that staffers ‘will not be intimidated’ by the 51-year-old multibillionaire.
‘A threat to workers at Twitter is a threat to Twitter’s future,’ the notice, viewed by DailyMail.com, reads.
A recent report found ‘heavy tweeters’ make up only 10 percent of users and Musk has also previously complained about the number of dormant or spam accounts on the platform
In April, before launching his long-winded $44 billion takeover bid, Musk posed the question: ‘Is Twitter dying?’
He may have been on the money, as recent internal documents show that the social media platform has had an ‘absolute decline’ in users since the pandemic.
The report, obtained by Reuters, reveals ‘heavy tweeters’ make up less than 10 percent of the site’s monthly users, but generate 90 percent of all the content and half of the company’s revenue.
The mass exodus is likely due to a dramatic shift in interests, according to the report.
Users are increasingly interested in cryptocurrency and ‘not safe for work’ (NSFW) content instead of celebrities and politics – topics that have been Twitter’s bread and butter.
Without these power users, Twitter could also struggle to attract new or keep existing advertisers.
A Twitter spokesman said that its audience has ‘continued to grow, reaching 238 million [monetizable daily active users] in Q2 2022,’ but the company has been found to falsify its monetizable daily active users, the number of users who can see ads on the site.
Musk will face trial if the Twitter deal is not signed by Friday.
He had made an unsolicited offer to buy Twitter, and inked a deal in April – but then sought to terminate the sale. Twitter filed a lawsuit to hold him to it.
With a trial looming, the unpredictable billionaire capitulated, reviving his takeover plan on the condition that legal proceedings were put on hold.
Musk said during a recent Tesla earnings call that he was ‘excited about the Twitter situation’, adding: ‘I think it’s an asset that has just sort of languished for a long time but has incredible potential, although obviously myself and the other investors are overpaying for Twitter right now.’
One of Musk’s biggest obstacles to closing the deal was keeping in place the financing pledged roughly six months ago.
A group of banks, including Morgan Stanley and Bank of America, signed on earlier this year to loan $12.5 billion of the money Musk needed to buy Twitter and take it private.
Morgan Stanley is among a group of banks who signed on to loan Musk $12.5bn of the money
Most of Musk’s wealth is tied up in shares of Tesla, the electric car company that he runs
Solid contracts with Musk bound the banks to the financing, although changes in the economy and debt markets since April have likely made the terms less attractive.
Musk even said his investment group would be buying Twitter for more than it’s worth.
Less clear is what’s happening with the billions of dollars pledged to Musk by investors who would get ownership stakes in Twitter.
Musk’s original slate of equity partners included an array of partners ranging from the billionaire’s tech world friends with like-minded ideas about Twitter’s future, such as Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison, to funds controlled by Middle Eastern royalty.
The more equity investors kick in for the deal, the less Musk has to pay on his own. Most of his wealth is tied up in shares of Tesla, the electric car company that he runs. Since April, he has sold more than $15 billion worth of Tesla stock, presumably to pay his share. More sales could be coming.