Elon Musk takes a major stake in Twitter, casts poll vote for Edit Button

Elon Musk takes a major stake in Twitter, casts poll vote for Edit Button
Published - Apr 5, 2022 @ 11:29 AM (EET)

In a securities filing Monday, Elon Musk reported owning nearly 73.5 million shares on Twitter (NYSE:TWTR), representing a 9.2% stake valued at $2.9 billion based on Friday's closing price.


The news sent Twitter's stock up 27%, its biggest one-day percentage gain on record, and makes Mr. Musk a more significant Twitter shareholder than former CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey and hotshot investors like Vanguard Group.


Though Musk's intentions are still unclear, the Tesla Inc. CEO has previously reveled in the attention from his massive Twitter following while broadly criticizing the service.


In recent weeks, Musk has publicly mused about his commitment to free speech and even tweeted a poll saying, "Free speech is essential to a functioning democracy.  Do you believe Twitter rigorously adheres to this principle?"


Of the roughly two million people who responded, more than 70% voted "No."


Following the SEC filing Monday night, Musk posed another question in a poll in which he asked followers if they wanted an "Edit Button."  By press time, 157,820 votes had been cast, of which 76.8% voted "yse," and 23.2% voted "on."


The misspelled words in the poll seem to be Musk's way of suggesting that such a feature is needed.

                                                    


NOW WHAT


The last year for Twitter hasn't been great as it struggles to keep up with the operating and financial results of its vast array of social media competitors.  And while the company has made some progress, headwinds are still expected.


The social media company's latest quarterly results and lower than expected user additions have raised concerns about its prospects even after pursuing larger projects like audio chat rooms and newsletters to end long-running stagnation.


"It does send a message to Twitter... having a meaningful stake in the company will keep them on their toes because that passive stake could very quickly become an active stake" - Managing Member Thomas Hayes at Great Hill Capital LLC.


With Musk involved, many analysts are already projecting potentially big new moves for Twitter.  A nearly 10% stake of the company under his control denotes a voting bloc that could negatively impact the company.


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