Elon Musk Fires Twitter Executives After Closing Acquisition

The tech mogul has reportedly terminated a handful of top Twitter executives, including former CEO Parag Agrawal and chief financial officer Ned Segal.

Elon Musk attends The 2022 Met Gala Celebrating "In America"

Image via Getty/Dimitrios Kambouris

Elon Musk attends The 2022 Met Gala Celebrating "In America"

Elon Musk is apparently cleaning house.

According to the Washington Post, the billionaire tech mogul completed his Twitter acquisition on Thursday night, following months of legal threats and skirmishes. Sources told the outlet that Musk wasted little time making his first big moves as the platform’s sole owner, and immediately terminated some top executives: chief financial officer Ned Segal; Vijaya Gadde, head of legal policy, trust, and safety; and chief executive officer Parag Agrawal. One insider, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, also said Twitter’s general counsel, Sean Edgett, was given the boot.

After he fired the three top executives on Thursday, he will have to pay out a total of $187 million to them, per CNN. The payouts will be on account of the shares they owned, which Musk purchased for $54.20 each. Agrawal, who became CEO less than a year ago, had 155,000 shares worth $8.4 million in total. Segal will get $22 million from 406,000 shares he owned, while Gadde will leave the company with $34.8 million from 642,000 shares.

Per the merger agreement, all three will receive the “Golden Parachute Compensation,” which includes a year’s base pay, and a year of health insurance. In addition to that, they will get accelerated vesting of stock they were set to get in the future had they not been fired. Agrawal gets $56.4 million worth, Segal $43.8 million, and Gadde $19.4 million. 

Earlier this week, Musk was spotted entering the company’s San Francisco headquarters as he prepared to finalize the $44 billion deal. He also updated his Twitter bio to include “Chief Twit,” sparking speculation he would soon fire Agrawal and take over the CEO position. 

JUST IN: Elon Musk updates Twitter bio to "Chief Twit" pic.twitter.com/WFTYg90v7q

— Watcher.Guru (@WatcherGuru) October 26, 2022

Last week word arrived that Musk was looking at a layoff of nearly 75 percent of Twitter’s staff, bringing the number from 7,500 to just over 2,000. The company was reportedly looking to lay off 25 percent of its workforce. 

The road to Musk’s acquisition has been long and rocky. He inked a deal to purchase the company back in April, but threatened to pull out of the deal just weeks later. Musk accused the platform of misleading him about the actual size of its user base, and claimed it was concealing the actual number of spam accounts. Twitter sued Musk in an effort to enforce the original agreement. Musk responded with a countersuit.

Several weeks ago, a Delaware judge told the parties they had until Oct. 28 to close the acquisition; if they failed to do so, the case would go to trial. 

Though the deal has been finalized, uncertainty continues to loom over Twitter’s future. Musk attempted to alleviate those concerns in a lengthy statement shared on Thursday, where he outlined his plans for the platform.

“There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society,” Musk wrote. “In the relentless pursuit of clicks, much of traditional media has fueled and catered to those polarized extremes, as they believe that is what brings in the money, but, in doing so, the opportunity for dialogue is lost.”

Dear Twitter Advertisers pic.twitter.com/GMwHmInPAS

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 27, 2022

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