Elon Musk will not join Twitter’s board of directors, the social network’s CEO Parag Agrawal said in a surprising turnaround after last week’s announcement that the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX had been appointed to the panel.
“We announced Tuesday that Elon will be appointed to the Board of Directors, pending a background check and formal acceptance. Elon’s appointment to the board of directors would officially come into effect on 4/9, but Elon announced that same morning that he will no longer be joining the board, “Agrawal said in a tweet Sunday night†
“We have and will always value the input of our shareholders, whether they are on our Board of Directors or not. Elon is our largest shareholder and we remain open to his input.”
In what appears to be his official commentary on development, the world’s richest man a one letter statement offered“🤭,” an emoji whose popular interpretations are “surprised,” “shocked,” and “yikes,” according to Urban Dictionary.
The revelation from Agrawal, who said last week he was in contact with Musk for “a few weeks” before announcing his appointment to the board, follows unusual tweets from the SpaceX executive over the weekend in which he wondered aloud for his more than 80 million followers of Twitter was dying, citing a low frequency of tweets from some of the most popular personalities on the social network.
Musk also asked his followers whether Twitter should convert its San Francisco headquarters into a homeless shelter, sparking a discussion that involved a wide range of industry figures, including Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos.
To join the board of Twitter, Musk would have to limit his total ownership of the social network to a maximum of 14.9% while on the board and 90 days after leaving, according to the terms of the agreement that Twitter disclosed. In the regulatory filing (PDF), Twitter said it plans to appoint Musk to its board for a term ending in 2024.
“I’m very happy that Elon is joining the Twitter board! He cares deeply about our world and Twitter’s role in it,” Jack Dorsey, co-founder and former CEO of Twitter, said on the news that Musk joined the Twitter board. “Parag and Elon both lead with their hearts and they will be an incredible team.” Dorsey has not yet commented on the new development.
Musk has bought 9.2% of Twitter’s stock, according to a filing he made earlier this month. Twitter shares rose a whopping 30% on the news that Musk was buying stock, and another 10% when his board appointment was announced the following day.
“The board and I had a lot of discussions about Elon joining the board, and directly with Elon,” Agrawal said in a tweet Sunday night. “We were excited to work together and make clear about the risks. We also believed that having Elon as a fiduciary of the company, where he, like all board members, must act in the best interests of the company and all our shareholders, was the best way forward.”
The Twitter board previously believed that it would be best if Elon joined. Now they think it’s best for him to back off.
So it’s the Twitter board that’s changed its mind, isn’t it Elon? Is this why they mention the background check (which would normally be a trivial detail)? https://t.co/G27T6FQc2p
— François Chollet (@fchollet) Apr 11, 2022
Twitter has 11 board members, including Dorsey, Agrawal, Salesforce co-chief executive Bret Taylor and Silver Lake co-chief executive Egon Durban. At the time of publication, Musk was still listed as a board member on his investor relations website.
Elon didn’t say why he invested in the company, but the timing of the disclosure followed him and expressed concerns about free speech and censorship on Twitter. However, analysts at Bernstein believed that Musk’s interest in Twitter was primarily personal.
“He joins 15+ other media-owned billionaires, including Bezos with WaPo. We see the interest as a potential distraction for Musk and TSLA shareholders, as Musk is arguably already over-involved and his zeal for the subject of censorship/free speech is high,” they wrote in a note.
Over the weekend, Musk also suggested that Twitter should consider giving an authentication check to anyone who subscribes to Twitter Blue, the company’s $3 monthly subscription service. “And no ads,” Musk said, outlining Twitter Blue’s features. “Corporate power to dictate policy is greatly magnified when Twitter relies on advertising money to survive.”
Some employees were concerned about Musk’s involvement with the company, reports said. To allay their concerns, Agrawal reportedly announced internally that Musk had agreed to a question-and-answer session with them.
This post In big turnaround, Elon Musk won’t join the Twitter board – TechCrunch
was original published at “https://techcrunch.com/2022/04/10/elon-musk-is-not-joining-twitter-board-ceo-parag-agrawal-says/”