Twitter was expected to launch its counter-attack on Elon Musk as soon as Friday, using a corporate tactic known as a poison pill, according to two people familiar with the company’s plans who were not allowed to speak publicly.
The strategy aims to slow down or block Mr Musk’s $ 43 billion bid to buy Twitter.
A poison pill, created by law enforcement agencies in the 1980s to protect companies from corporate invaders, basically allows a flood of new shares in a takeover target market or allows existing shareholders to buy at a discount. This means that anyone trying to acquire a company will have to buy more shares to gain control.
Details of how the Twitter poison pill will be designed are not known.
On Thursday, Mr Musk announced his intention to acquire the social media service, a purchase he believes would allow him to return to Twitter’s restraint policies.
Twitter has tried to quarrel with the richest man in the world in recent weeks because he is constantly snatching its shares. Last week, Twitter offered Mr Musk a board seat, but he pushed for the arrangement when it became clear he could no longer independently criticize the company. He declined to comment on Saturday and announced his plans to acquire Twitter on Wednesday evening.
Mr Musk looks set for a long fight on Thursday. “At .20 54.20, Twitter should rely on privately held shareholders, not boards,” he tweeted alongside a yes / no poll.
It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. His early, empty-bones left open important questions about his ability to finance together. Mr Musk has hired Morgan Stanley to advise Bid, although investment banks are not generally known for their financing of large-scale contracts. And Twitter shareholders seem to be wary: Twitter’s stock fell nearly 2 percent on Thursday, closing at $ 45.08 – significantly below Mr. Musk’s offer.
Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Al Waleed bin Talal, who described himself as one of Twitter’s largest and longest-serving shareholders, said on Thursday that Twitter should reject Mr Musk’s offer because it was not high enough to reflect the company.The underlying value“Analysts further suggest that Mr Musk’s price is too low and does not reflect Twitter’s recent performance.
Mr Musk argued that the privatization of Twitter would lead to more free speech on the platform. “My firm belief is that having a universal platform that is the most trustworthy and widely included is crucial for the future of civilization,” he said in an interview at the TED conference on Thursday.
He further added that the algorithm used by Twitter to rank the content, determine what millions of users are viewing on the service every day, should be universal for users to audit.
Mr Musk’s concerns have been shared by many executives on Twitter, who have been pushing for more clarity about his algorithm. The company has published Internal research Its algorithms have funded efforts to create an open, transparent standard for bias and for social media services.
But Twitter officials objected to Mr Musk’s hardball tactics. Following Thursday morning’s board meeting, the company began exploring options to block Mr. Musk, including the possibility of contacting poison pills and other buyers.
During an all-out meeting on Thursday afternoon, Twitter’s chief executive, Parag Agarwal, sought to reassure staff about possible tremors. Although he declined to elaborate on the board’s plans, he encouraged employees to be vigilant and not allow themselves to be distracted by Mr. Musk.