WOW: Elon turns down Twitter board seat in big hint of what’s to come

When news broke that Elon Musk had spent some of his billions buying a massive stake in Twitter, a stake large enough to make him the largest single holder of Twitter stock, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal said that Elon have been invited to join the board of twitter and say:

I am pleased to announce that we are appointing @elonmusk to our board! Through discussions with Elon over the last few weeks, we realized that he would bring great value to our board.

Elon responded at the time in a way that made it sound like he would go along with it, saying:

We look forward to working with Parag & Twitter Board to make significant improvements to Twitter in the coming months!

However, it turns out that Elon will not be joining Twitter’s board: Agrawal announced this in a recent tweet that included an explanation as to why Elon would not be joining the board. In it Agrawal said:

The board and I have had many discussions about Elon joining the board and directly with Elon. We were excited to work together and understand the risks. We also felt that having Elon as a trustee of the company where he, like all board members, must act in the best interests of the company and all of our shareholders is the best way forward. The board offered him a seat.

[…]Elon’s appointment to the board was scheduled for April 9th. officially come into effect, but Elon announced the same morning that he would no longer be joining the board. I think that’s the best. We have and always will value the input of our shareholders, whether they are on our board of directors or not. Elon is our largest shareholder and we remain open to their contributions.”

This is big news, not only because of the fact that Elon won’t be joining the board as originally thought, but because it has a major impact on what Elon might plan to do next.

You see, as a member of Twitter’s board of directors, Elon would have been limited to a 14.9% stake in the company. That’s a respectable number of stocks, a good chunk of the company that would allow it to throw its weight around, but not enough to single-handedly control its direction.

To do this, he needs a stake of more than 50% in the company, which would not have been possible as a board member.

Therefore, by turning down the board seat, Elon is giving himself an opportunity to go “all-in” on his goal of restoring Twitter to a platform for free speech, something he perhaps felt all the more necessary after leftists worked for Twitter lost when its original ownership interest was announced.

Change from within sounds great at first, but seemed impossible to Elon once he realized who he was dealing with, which was quickly addressed on Twitter:

Given his responses after his meeting with the “Twitterati” staff and all the funny crap Andreessen said and deleted. It looks like Musk realized there was no political solution and snubbed the board seat to circumvent the 14.99% ownership cap. 50.1%, here we come.

If Elon took the Twitter board seat, he would be limited to less than 15% of the shares and would also be locked in by fiduciary duties.

By declining a seat on the board, he’s either already on Twitter or planning to go much bigger.

The line about “distractions” here suggests the latter.

Maybe Elon just doesn’t want to be on the board. But with a net worth of nearly $300 billion, he has the funds to buy a 50.01 percent stake in Twitter if he wants, or even the entire company, so there’s a very good chance his rejection of the Board seat offer means that he intends to buy a majority stake in the company. WOW: Elon turns down Twitter board seat in big hint of what’s to come

Jake Nichol

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