Elon Musk Addresses Twitter Staff Ahead Of Company Acquisition
Elon Musk has addressed employees of Twitter for the first time on Thursday, ahead of his $44 billion acquisition deal.
Musk spoke to the staff via a companywide video call where he held a question and answer session with them, moderated by a Twitter executive, during which he spoke on everything from layoffs to the existence of aliens.
He, however, didn’t offer any update on the actual acquisition deal during the meeting.
According to Reuters, he told the staff that he wants to raise Twitter’s number of users from its current 229 million to at least 1 billion. He also spoke on the importance of advertising for the company, despite previously stating that he doesn’t believe Twitter should be serving ads.
“I think advertising is very important for Twitter. I’m not against advertising. I would probably talk to the advertisers and say, like, ‘hey, let’s just make sure the ads are as entertaining as possible,'” Musk said, adding that he was still trying to learn about bot and spam accounts on Twitter, which he referred to and his biggest concern.
Speaking on whether or not there would be staff layoffs, Musk explained that “some rationalization of headcount and expenses” was necessary.
“Right now, the costs exceed the revenue. That’s not a great situation,” he said, “but anyone who’s a significant contributor should have nothing to worry about.”
Musk also told the staff that it would be better if they were on location physically, rather than working remotely, but that exceptional employees might be able to work remotely. About a quarter of Twitter employees currently work remotely as the company provides relatively free rein to work remotely or in person, at the office.
“The bias should be strongly towards working in person, but if somebody is exceptional, then remote work can be okay,” he said.
Explaining his plan to take the company private once the acquisition is complete, Musk said he believed that it could be more productive without having to appease activist shareholders.
The Tesla CEO had reached a deal back in April to purchase the company for $44 billion and take it private but has remained openly critical of it, even threatening to halt the deal due to concerns about the actual number of fake/spam accounts on the platform.