Owning a 9.2 percent stake in Twitter, Elon Musk is now the biggest shareholder in the company. He is also set to serve on Twitter’s board of directors. With this, the billionaire’s entrance into the company spells big changes for some. Analysts and experts believe Musk will be able to create changes on the social media platform, especially on how it operates. Yet, Musk filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which indicates his stake in the company would be passive. Twitter, meanwhile, said that its operations and decisions are in the hands of its management and employees.
The world’s eyes are watching for the movements within Twitter, Inc. With Musk as a new member of its board and a long-time critic of the platform, many speculate about the true intention of the business magnate in entering the company. In an investor note obtained by the Wall Street Journal, Brent Hill, Jeffries analyst, wrote that they “believe one of Musk’s main motives could be to influence [Twitter’s] moderation policies, which he has often criticized as being too restrictive.”
This gave hope to the conservatives hoping to get former President Trump’s page reinstated. Twitter, however, turned down the idea with a statement that also implicates the limitations of the board’s power.
“Twitter is committed to impartiality in the development and enforcement of its policies and rules,” said Twitter. “Our policy decisions are not determined by the Board or shareholders, and we have no plans to reverse any policy decisions. As always our Board plays an important advisory and feedback role across the entirety of our service. Our day to day operations and decisions are made by Twitter management and employees.”
On the other hand, while the appointment looks good for Musk, the SpaceX CEO and founder has to observe specific terms of his agreement: owning 14.9 percent of the company’s stock is prohibited while he’s still a board member and after 90 days of leaving the position.
Musk’s tenure on the board will be until 2024. Parag Agrawal, the new Twitter CEO, welcomed him in a Twitter post despite the speculated tension building up due to Musk’s critical stand about the company “failing to adhere to free speech principles.”
“I’m excited to share that we’re appointing @elonmusk to our board! Through conversations with Elon in recent weeks, it became clear to us that he would bring great value to our Board,” the post reads. “He’s both a passionate believer and intense critic of the service which is exactly what we need on @Twitter, and in the boardroom, to make us stronger in the long-term. Welcome Elon!”