He has used Twitter to poll people, apparently to make important business decisions. He has figuratively spoken (more than once) by regulators about how he has used the social platform to potentially manipulate the markets. And he’s even said he wanted to build his own social platform, as owning a digital mouthpiece seems to be the mogul’s (and autocrat’s) current version of having your own superyacht.
Now Elon Musk is putting some of his money where his mouth has been for years. Today, Twitter released a statement confirming that the SpaceX and Tesla entrepreneur has taken a 9.2% stake in the company, which is roughly $2.9 billion based on Friday’s stock price.
The confirmation of the stock buy – which some were rumored to have last week – has sent shares of Twitter soaring; it is currently some 23% above Friday’s closing price prior to markets opening.
The filing, signed and dated today by Musk, notes that the stock event actually took place on March 14. In particular, it was noted that as of that date, he had purchased 73,486,938 common shares.
The date is remarkable, as it is about 14 days older than Musk’s tweets claimed he was ” seriously considering ” the idea of starting his own social network. One takeaway is that he teased the real news here – that he took a stake in Twitter – to his base. Once a troll, always a troll.
Since it’s a long process to start a social network from scratch and has absolutely no guarantee of success, Musk’s version of building begins now, in the form of building a stake in an already established company – a platform where he has established itself as a power user, no less.
Musk aficionados have enjoyed the chance on Twitter to tweet at him in hopes of a response, and to follow his words religiously on everything from cryptocurrency and his companies to world affairs. His critics have criticized the way he apparently manipulates situations, sometimes just for fun, using the platform. As for Musk himself, he’s hard to pin down, but largely comes across as libertarian in his approach. That position is underlined by this newfound interest he has developed in being a social media entrepreneur — not just a user — with a focus on so-called “free speech.”
Some have reported that these shares will, in fact, become Musk Twitter’s largest single shareholder. What that might mean for Twitter, for Musk, and for the world of reasonable people who aren’t fanboys of the man remains to be seen. We’ve reached out to the company to confirm that detail and will update when we know more.
This post Musk Takes a $3 Billion Bite From Twitter; now the Tesla mogul has a 9.2% share of the social network – TechCrunch was original published at “https://techcrunch.com/2022/04/04/musk-twitter-shares-trolled-again/”