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Is Elon Musk trolling Twitter to secure a takeover?

Twitter HQ // Illustration by Kate Walker

Is Elon Musk trolling Twitter to secure a takeover?


Future. Elon Musk is taking Twitter to task, declining a board seat and signaling that he may have plans to buy even more of the company. He’s also continuing to air his (many) grievances about the platform… on the platform. So, what does this all mean? Musk may either be positioning himself for a hostile takeover of Twitter… or he’s simply sabotaging the company he spent billions investing in.

Squawk stock
Musk has decided to change Twitter from the outside.

  • Although there was a lot of hand-wringing over Twitter offering its new largest shareholder a board seat, Musk declined the position.
  • Part of Musk’s reasoning for declining the offer could be that taking the seat would’ve limited him to only acquiring up to 14.9% of Twitter’s stock.
  • That tracks since Musk amended his investment filing to a Schedule 13D, which is what activist investors use to signal they want to take control of a company.
  • In the filing, Musk stated that he plans to talk with the board of directors about everything “without limitation.”

Rule the roost
Amidst all the behind-the-scenes drama, Musk spent the weekend publicly tweeting ways that Twitter should change, including adjustments to Twitter Blue, turning the San Francisco HQ into a homeless shelter, and getting rid of ads (of which 90% of Twitter’s revenue comes from). Oh, and he also wondered out loud whether Twitter was “dying” because the top celebrity users don’t really post that much.

Considering how his tweets can move the market, Musk may be priming both Wall Street and the court of public opinion on the idea of him taking over the reins in the future.

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