Twitter CEO Elon Musk has offered the social-media company’s employees stock grants at a valuation of nearly $20 billion, The Information reported, citing a person familiar with an email Musk sent to Twitter staff. The reported valuation is less than half of the $44 billion that Musk paid to acquire the platform, pointing to a drop in Twitter’s value.
Musk in the note to staff said he was optimistic about the social-media company’s future. “I see a clear, but difficult, path to a >$250 billion valuation,” meaning stock granted now would be worth 10 times more, he said. Musk also said in the email that Twitter is being reshaped so rapidly that the company “can be thought of as an inverse start-up.” He said radical changes have been necessary in part to ensure that Twitter didn’t go bankrupt, according to the email.
In a separate email that was reviewed by the Wall Street Journal, Twitter told employees it is offering new equity grants to staff that will start to vest after six months.
The company plans to offer a liquidity event roughly a year from now, in which employees can cash out some of their equity, the email shows. The number of employees who received the equity grants could not be learned.
Musk said in December that Twitter is on track to be “roughly cash flow break-even” in 2023 as top advertisers slashed their spending on the social-media platform after the billionaire’ s takeover.
In response to a request for comment, Twitter’s press email responded with a poop emoji, which Musk recently tweeted will be the company’s auto-response for media inquiries.
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The new grants will vest over four years, according to the email, and be in addition to and separate from any legacy Twitter equity that was converted to cash at the time of the acquisition in October 2022, WSJ reported.