Parag Agrawal sacks: Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal fired, Timeline of how Twitter became an Elon Musk company |
Here’s a timeline of the twists and turns in his way up to ‘Chief Twit’ as his Twitter bio describes him now.
October 28 — the D-Day: The two parties (Elon Musk and Twitter) have to close the deal by today (October 28). If they don’t, the Delaware Chancery Court judge overseeing the case plans to reschedule the trial in November. Musk had made the latest offer just two weeks before a Twitter lawsuit aimed at forcing Musk to go through with the deal was scheduled to go to trial in Delaware Chancery Court. After receiving Musk’s offer, Twitter said it intends to close the transaction.
The big U-Turn on October 4: Musk changed his mind again on October 4, filing a letter with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) affirming his commitment to the original proposal to buy Twitter for $44 billion — a deal he had spent the previous several months trying to wriggle out of.
How it started on January 31: Musk starts buying shares of Twitter in near-daily installments, amassing a 5% stake in the company by mid-March.
Wants to build ‘Twitter 2’— March 26-27: Musk says he is giving “serious thought” to building an alternative to Twitter, questioning the platform’s commitment to “free speech” and whether Twitter is undermining democracy. He also privately reaches out to Twitter board members including his friend and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey. Musk also starts conversations with its CEO and board members about potentially joining the board. Musk also mentions taking Twitter private, according to later regulatory filings.
Becomes the largest shareholder of Twitter — April 4: A regulatory filing reveals that Musk has rapidly become the largest shareholder of Twitter after acquiring a 9% stake, or 73.5 million shares, worth about $3 billion.
Offered a seat on Twitter’s board — April 5: Musk is offered a seat on Twitter’s board on the condition that he amass no more than 14.9% of the company’s stock. CEO Parag Agrawal said in a tweet that “it became clear to us that he would bring great value to our Board.”
Elon Musk-Parag Agrawal honeymoon ends: After exchanging pleasantries and bonding by text message over their love of engineering, a short-lived relationship between Agrawal and Musk sours after Musk publicly tweets “Is Twitter dying?” and gets a message from Agrawal calling the criticism unhelpful. Musk terse response: “This is a waste of time. Will make an offer to take Twitter private.” On April 11, CEO Agrawal announced Musk will not be joining the board after all.
Twitter Board takes the ‘poison pill) — April 14-15: Twitter reveals in SEC filing that Musk has offered to buy the company outright for about $44 billion. The company’s board unanimously adopts a “poison pill” defense in response to Musk’s proposed offer, attempting to thwart a hostile takeover.
Musk gets the money, sells Tesla shares: Musk lines up $46.5 billion in financing to buy Twitter. Twitter board is under pressure to negotiate. Musk reaches a deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion and take the company private. Musk sells roughly $8.5 billion worth of shares in Tesla to help fund the purchase of Twitter, according to regulatory filings.
Gets the heavy weights behind — May 5: Elon Musk strengthens his offer to buy Twitter with commitments of more than $7 billion from a diverse group of investors including Silicon Valley heavy hitters like Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison.
Disruption at Twitter starts — says will reverse Twitter ban on Donald Trump: In a hint at how he would change Twitter, Musk says he’d reverse Twitter’s ban of former President Donald Trump following the January 6, 2021 insurrection at the US Capitol.
Puts Twitter buy on hold –May 13: Musk declares his plan to buy Twitter “temporarily on hold.” He says he needs to pinpoint the number of spam and fake accounts on the social media platform. Shares of Twitter tumble, while those of Tesla rebound sharply.
Threatens to end $44 Twitter deal– June 6: Musk threatens to end his $44 billion agreement to buy Twitter. Reason: Twitter’s refusal to give him information he requested about its spam bot accounts. Musk says he will abandon his offer to buy Twitter after the company failed to provide enough information about the number of fake accounts.
Lawsuit and counter lawsuit starts: Twitter sues Musk to force him to complete the deal. Musk soon countersues. A Delaware judge says that the Musk-Twitter legal dispute will go to trial in October.
Elon Musk gets a reason to prove why he dumped the Twitter deal: A former head of security at Twitter alleges the company misled regulators about its poor cybersecurity defenses and its negligence in attempting to root out fake accounts that spread misinformation. Musk eventually cites the whistleblower as a new reason to scuttle his Twitter deal.
The big change of heart — October 5: Musk offers to go through with his original proposal to buy Twitter for $44 billion. Twitter says it intends to close the transaction after receiving Musk’s offer. Delaware judge delays October 17 trial until November and gives both sides until October 28 to reach agreement to close the deal.
(With agency inputs)
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