The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Twitter didn’t address Elon Musk’s takeover during shareholder meeting

(Matt Rourke/AP)
Placeholder while article actions load

Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s potential takeover of Twitter loomed over the company’s annual investor meeting Wednesday, even as executives shut down questions about the deal.

Investors asked questions including what would happen to their shares if it went through. Executives on the call declined to answer, and said the deal would be addressed at a later meeting.

Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal said the company is focused on business as usual, despite the negotiations with Musk. “We are working through the transaction process,” Agrawal said. “Our teams and I remain focused.”

Two right-wing groups who bought a handful of shares to make proposals to the board also called on Musk to support their positions. One of the groups accused Twitter of discriminating against men and White people in its hiring, and another alleged the company was too aggressive in how it moderated right-wing views on Twitter, something Musk himself has talked about.

Before the meeting, it was unclear if Musk would join himself. He did not.

Elon Musk says deal can’t ‘move forward’ until Twitter proves bot numbers

Here’s what else to know

  • The publication Insider reported last week that Musk allegedly sexually harassed a flight attendant aboard his jet and that his aerospace firm, SpaceX, paid the woman $250,000 to settle the claim. Musk has vigorously denied the report and called it “politically motivated” amid his bid to buy Twitter.
  • Musk’s focus on bots, or potential fake accounts, could be a tactic to get the Twitter board to renegotiate a lower price, analysts say. The company’s stock is trading well below the $54.20 a share Musk has agreed to pay, signaling the market doesn’t believe the deal will go through as planned. Twitter is still committed to seeing through the deal at the agreed-upon price, and other shareholders might be upset and even sue the company if it agrees to something lower. This may be a chance to hear what shareholders have been thinking.
  • There were several other shareholder proposals on the table, including one asking the company to be more transparent about its lobbying and one requesting the board to hire an outside firm to review the impact Twitter has on civil rights.
  • Co-founder and former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey officially left the company’s board today, a move that was previously announced.