Elon Musk has a problem with the former leadership of Twitter. This lawsuit could cost him dearly

Luc Williams

In late 2022, Twitter's then-new owner Elon Musk fired multiple executives. Some of them are now suing him, demanding almost $130 million in severance they say they are owed.

After the takeover of Twitter, its value dropped by half

“Musk doesn't pay, believes the rules don't apply to him, and uses his wealth and power to trample on anyone who disagrees with him,” the plaintiffs said. They argue that for over a year, Musk's side was unable to provide sufficient reasons for terminating the contract. The plaintiffs include former Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, who is demanding $57.4 million. Of that, only $1 million is the annual salary he is entitled to under his severance agreement. Former CFO Ned Segal is seeking nearly $44.5 million.

Musk acquired Twitter in October 2022 for a whopping $44 billion. The billionaire announced the purchase in April 2022, initially withdrew from this idea in July, but eventually finalized it. Musk then fired Twitter's top management and thousands of employees as part of a restructuring of the platform. There were also plaintiffs among them. He changed the name of the social media platform to X, but the URL twitter.com still works and links to the website x.com. Musk admitted several times that after the acquisition of Twitter, its value fell by half due to the departure of large advertising clients.

Former bosses consider themselves personally wronged by Musk

Former bosses consider themselves personally wronged by Musk. The lawsuit goes on to state that they “appropriately and decisively represented the interests of Twitter shareholders” during Musk's “attempt to withdraw from the deal.” For these efforts, Musk “swore revenge on them for the rest of his life.” Managers also drew attention to Musk's biography published a few months ago, which described how he wanted to fire them quickly.

Musk cited reasons for terminating the contract, including “gross negligence” and “willful misconduct,” but the termination letters did not include any examples of the conduct mentioned in the lawsuit. The justification was later given for bonuses for lawyers who helped a then-reluctant Musk strike a deal with Twitter, as well as bonuses for employees.

Musk decided not to pay the plaintiffs severance packages. According to them, they were fired “without cause” and only then the new owner of Twitter came up with an excuse to fire them.


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