Elon Musk jokes to billionaires about overpaying for Twitter as he conducts mass layoffs

auto, autos, car, cars, elon musk jokes to billionaires about overpaying for twitter as he conducts mass layoffs

Elon Musk attends The 2022 Met Gala. Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

  • Elon Musk made a surprise appearance at the Baron Investment Conference in Manhattan.
  • The appearance comes on the same day Twitter plans to cut as much as 50% of its staff.  
  • Musk said the layoffs will save the company $400 million a year, and presented his turnaround plan. 

Elon Musk joked about overpaying for Twitter during a surprise appearance at a conference for wealthy people in New York City as his new social media company started mass layoffs.

Speaking at the Baron Investment Conference, an annual extravaganza for well-heeled clients of Baron Capital, the billionaire enterprenuer admitted that he paid too much for the social media company, which he bought for $44 billion.

“I tried to get out of the deal, it was like that scene from ‘The Godfather,'” he said to laughter while making a strained expression. “I mean I think most people would say, given how market has evolved this year, the price is on the high side,” he said.

Musk’s appearance comes as he gears up to lay off as much as 50% of Twitter’s 7,500 staff — one week after purchasing the struggling social media company.

He addressed the layoffs saying he expects them to save the company $400 a year. Musk also gave his pitch for turning the troubled social media company around, including plans to start charging verified user $8 a month.

He acknowledged that recouping his investment will be “very difficult to achieve” but said he believed it “possible” that Twitter will one day “become one of the most valuable companies in the world.” He cited his past turnaround success at other companies, and said once Twitter is up and running it should be easier to run than either Tesla, his electric car company, or SpaceX, his rocket company.

Twitter emailed staff on Thursday, warning of impending layoffs “in an effort to place Twitter on a healthy path.”

The email said targeted staffers would be notified via  email by 9 a.m. West Coast time on Friday. But just hours after the initial email was sent, some Twitter employees began losing access to their work platforms, including Slack and emails, Insider’s Kali Hays reported.

Guests of the conference only found out Musk was speaking when they arrived at the Metropolitan Opera for the extravaganza and read their programs or saw the poster board with the day’s agenda.

Some 4,000 investors registered for the event run by billionaire Ron Baron and known for notable guest speakers, celebrity performers, and lavish giveaways. This year’s attendees were entered for a chance to win a Tesla Model Y. Past guest performers have included Paul McCartney, Sting, Jon Bon Jovi, Rod Stewart, and Jerry Seinfeld.

Baron is one of Tesla’s largest shareholders. When asked about the cuts on CNBC he said: “There’s a lot of people there that aren’t vevry productive. They work from home. They haven’t written much code.”

Baron’s fund also invested $100 million in SpaceX this last August.

Former Twitter employees are flocking to social media to share their experiences. Twitter was also sued Thursday for violations of the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act,WARN Act, which requires employeers provide 60 days advance notice of layoffs that will affect more than 50 people.

Musk has spoken at the conference at least once before, including in 2015, but guests were surprised that he would make a cameo while he overhauls Twitter, including a temporary closure of its offices.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Breaking thailand news, thai news, thailand news Verified News Story Network