Tesla Chief Elon Musk, who acquired one of the world’s most influential social media platforms Twitter for $44 billion, has witnessed his worth decline by $9 billion, according to calculations by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
The world’s richest entrepreneur finalised the deal to acquire the 16-year-old technology platform, also termed one of the biggest leveraged buyout deals in history following a legal battle.
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However, Musk’s net worth now stands at $203 billion, down roughly 25 per cent since the beginning of the year, reported Time citing Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Musk still remains the world’s richest person ahead of Bernard Arnault by around $65 billion.
In a statement issued when the deal was closed, Musk said he “didn’t do it to make more money” but rather to “try to help humanity.” Musk paid roughly $25 billion as part of the deal while venture capital firms Sequoia Capital and Andreessen Horowitz offered around $7.1 billion in cash. Additional investors picked up the remaining amount.
The new Twitter chief has a tough road ahead in terms of financial challenges in owning the company that failed to turn an annual profit in three of the last five years and took on $13 billion in debt as part of the blockbuster deal. Digital advertising which makes up 90 per cent of its revenue has also witnessed a decline. To balance the expected losses, Musk said the platform is considering charging users $20 to maintain the coveted blue check mark of verification on their account.
On Tuesday, Musk tweeted that users will now be able to buy the Blue verification tick mark at the price of $8 per month.
Elon Musk’s plan to charge Twitter users $19.99 per month to keep their blue-tick verification badges has the Twitterati up in arms.
It all started as Musk, soon after the takeover, tweeted that Twitter’s verification process “is being revamped” right now. This was followed by media reports, based on the company’s internal correspondence, suggesting that Twitter will charge users $19.99 for the Twitter Blue badge instead of the current price of $4.99 per month.