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NEW YORK: Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk said he wants to expand the reach of Twitter beyond the current “niche” until most Americans use the social media platform.
Musk has signed a deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion, raising questions among employees and the public about his strategy for running the social media network.
He told reporters gathered on the red carpet at the annual Met Gala in New York that an important measure of success would be whether Twitter could expand its audience significantly.
“Right now it’s sort of niche. I want a much bigger percentage of the country to be on it, engaging in dialogue,” said Musk, who attended the celebrity-studded event with his mother Maye Musk, a model.
Musk said he wanted the platform to be “as broadly inclusive as possible, where ideally most of America is on it and talking,” and as trusted as possible.
The billionaire also said he would make Twitter transparent about how tweets are promoted or demoted and wanted its software to be publicly available for critique.
Asked about a potential exodus of employees, Musk said: “It’s a free country.” “Certainly if anyone doesn’t feel comfortable with that, they will on their own accord go somewhere else. That’s fine,” he said.
Earlier, Reuters reported that Elon Musk is in talks with large investment firms and high net-worth individuals about taking on more financing for his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter and tying up less of his wealth in the deal.
The new financing, which could come in the form of preferred or common equity, could reduce the $21 billion cash contribution that Musk has committed to the deal as well as a margin loan he secured against his Tesla shares, the sources said.