Elon Musk's Twitter takeover: A complete timeline of events
- Musk pulled out of the takeover deal in early July
- Twitter filed a lawsuit against Musk after he backed out of the deal
- Musk also owns companies like Tesla and SpaceX
Elon Musk's bid to take over social media giant Twitter collapsed earlier this month. The platform has now filed a lawsuit against the Tesla CEO, attempting to reverse his decision to pull out of the deal months after it was finalised.
Here is a complete timeline of events:
January 31, 2022: Musk started off by buying shares of the microblogging platform, however, it was done secretly for some time at least. After accumulating 5% of the share, Musk was obligated to reveal his transactions to the United States Securities Exchange Commission. He ultimately failed to do so on time.
April 4: Elon Musk's holding of Twitter shares is revealed. At this point, the Tesla and SpaceX boss has a 9.2% of stake in the company -- the largest any shareholder has. All this while Musk had been slamming Twitter's policies and bringing forward what he thought were shortcomings.
Later on April 4: Elon Musk, for the first time publicly, showed interest in changing Twitter policies and features. He posted a poll, asking his followers if an "edit button" feature should be rolled out.
He was also asked to join the board of directors of Twitter on the same day.
April 9: Elon Musk rejected Twitter's invite for him to join the board of directors. While he did not say much about his decision, he continued suggesting new policy changes. Musk suggested "blue-ticking" every user who signs up for Twitter Blue, a subscription feature.
April 11: Musk started shedding responsibility days after he rejected the board of directors seat. After filing a fresh SEC form, he allowed himself to buy as many shares of the company and also distanced himself from acting in favour of the company. Current Twitter CEO Parag Agarwal signals distress among the employees.
April 14: Elon Musk announced that he has offered a buyout option to Twitter, a cash deal valued at $43 billion. While Musk said he would take the company private, the offer would stand at $54.20 a share, a 54% premium over the price when he started building his stake in January, according to reports from Bloomberg.
April 15: In order to stave off Musk's takeover of Twitter, the company said it has a "poison pill". This was described as a rights plan that allows shareholders to purchase shares at a discount if any shareholder exceeds 15% ownership.
April 21: Musk said he is ready to put $46.5 billion on the table after he reportedly "secured the funding". A filing with the SEC shows that he has $25.5 billion in debt financing from Morgan Stanley and other financial institutions, Bloomberg reported.
April 26: Twitter's board of directors agreed to a takeover of the company after cracking a deal worth roughly $44 billion. Musk said in a joint statement with Twitter that he wants to make the service “better than ever” with new features while getting rid of automated "spam'' accounts and making its algorithms open to the public to increase trust.
April 29: In what seems like an attempt to raise funds for the twitter buy-out, Musk offloads Tesla Inc. stocks worth $4.5 billion, as per filings which brings the total value of Tesla shares sold to $8.5 billion, numbering in excess of 5 million shares.
May 4: Musk rounds up another $7 billion in financing from multiple sources. They include Oracle founder Larry Ellison, cryptocurrency firm Binance and venture capital firm Sequoia Capital. He also received assurance from the Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal, who agreed to offload his nearly 35 million shares, worth $1.9 billion at $54.20 per share.
May 6: In a pitch to investors, Musk vows to quintuple Twitter's revenues to $26.4 billion by 2028. In addition, Musk predicts a rise to 931 million users from the present tally of 217 million in the same period. To achieve this, he aims to reduce the platform's reliance on advertisement revenue while seeking to boost subscription revenues and their payments business.
May 10: In keeping with his free speech rhetoric, Musk promises to reinstate Donald Trump's Twitter account, reversing a perma-ban imposed in January 2021. This has received a vote of approval from ex-Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey.
May 12: Twitter CEO Parag Agarwal suspends all new hirings while introducing other cost-reduction measures amidst uncertainty over its sale. As a consequence, the company may rescind offers to new joiners. In addition, Twitter also laid off two top executives: Kayvon Beykpour, Head of Consumer Products, who was on paternity leave and Bruce Falck, revenue product lead.
May 13: Musk tweets that the deal is on hold due to Twitter's inability to conclusively prove that the total number of spam and fake users on the platform number less than 5% of its users. Twitter's stocks respond terribly to the news, plummeting considerably. Musk assures shareholders in a later tweet, stating that he is 'still committed' to the purchase.
May 14: Musk tweets that Twitter's legal team has accused him of being in violation of a non-disclosure agreement. By disclosing that the sample size for automated user checks on the platform numbers a measly 100, Musk drew the ire of lawyers representing the San Francisco based company, much to his amusement, dismay or lord knows what!
May 16: Musk and Twitter CEO Parag Agarwal duke it out on err...Twitter over the presence of bot accounts. While Agarwal was at pains to explain the intricacies of the issue, Musk responded with a poop emoji, adding to the absurdity of the whole affair.
May 17: In what seems to be a particularly thorny issue for the South African, Musk threatens to pull out of the deal unless the who's who in Twitter can conclusively prove that fake profiles account for less than 5% of total users on the platform.
June 8: Musk and Twitter had started to publicly lock horns about the number of "bots" that were present on the micro-blogging platform. In order to keep the Tesla CEO from pulling out, Twitter offered access to firehose API, which would have reportedly included data about concurrent users.
July 8: As was expected, Musk pulled out of his deal to takeover Twitter after sending a letter to the platform's board. Musk cited "multiple breaches" of the contract that was signed earlier to finalise the deal.
July 12: Twitter filed a lawsuit against Musk for backing out of the takeover deal. The lawsuit, which was filed in Delaware's Court of Chancery, accuses the SpaceX boss of hypocrisy and bad faith. The micro-blogging platform's attempt to sue Musk is not just limited to getting the $1 billion compensation, but also aims to compel him to complete the deal.