Twitter shareholders today voted to approve the sale of the company to Elon Musk, a key administrative move that is also a bit surreal as Tesla’s billionaire founder fights in court to get out of the deal.
The vote was scheduled a few months ago. It comes on the same day that a Twitter whistleblower claims the social media platform’s security and privacy policies, or lack thereof, in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. Former Twitter head of security Peter Zatko filed a complaint against the company with federal agencies in July. Twitter called him a disgruntled employee.
The extraordinary meeting of shareholders lasted only seven minutes, there were no questions. The final vote did not come as a surprise. Last spring, the board approved the deal and recommended that shareholders do the same. They started e-voting a few weeks ago and reports have shown that there are enough of them for approval. The exact amount will be announced later.
Musk owns 9.6% of Twitter. He initially wanted and got a seat on the board of directors before deciding instead to buy the company outright, forgoing due diligence. Court and will appear in court next month. Musk’s case initially looked benign, but Zatko’s accusations may have breathed new life into it. He spent the morning describing to senators what he called dangerously weak cybersecurity as the company focuses on revenue and user growth.
The latter claim overlaps with Musk’s main allegation that Twitter is lying about the number of fake accounts on its platform. Last week, a judge agreed, over Twitter’s objections, to allow Musk’s camp to amend their counterclaim to reflect the whistleblower’s claims.