Sep 13, 2022 - Economy

Twitter shareholders approve Elon Musk's $44 billion takeover offer

Elon Musk speaking in Stavanger, Norway, in August 2022.

Photo: Carina Johansen/NTB/AFP via Getty Images

Twitter shareholders on Tuesday voted to approve Elon Musk's offer to buy the social media platform for around $44 billion, just weeks before the start of the company's trial against the billionaire for trying to back out of the deal, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Why it matters: The vote came the same day Peiter Zatko, Twitter's former head of security who released an 84-page whistleblower complaint against the platform last month, testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee about the national security implications of his claims.

Driving the news: Zatko's allegations included that the platform violated a 2011 consent decree with the U.S. government, that it can't track and limit employees’ access to its networks, and that it lacks recovery plans if its data centers go down, Axios' Sam Sabin reports.

  • He alleged before the Senate committee that the company was informed of agents of the Chinese government working at the social media firm and that some employees had concerns the Chinese government could collect data on the company's users, Reuters reports.
  • Zatko further alleged that a Twitter executive knew that at least one agent working for the Chinese government's espionage agency was an employee at the company.

The big picture: If Musk loses the court battle, he could be forced to acquire Twitter, even if he doesn't want it anymore, through a court-enforced merger.

What's next: The trial is expected to begin at Delaware Chancery Court on Oct. 17, unless they settle out of court beforehand.

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Editor's note: This story has been updated with new details throughout.

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