Looks like Elon Musk has done it and bought Twitter. The acquisition of one of the world’s biggest social media sites was a legally fraught one, as has been well-documented. Not so widely covered? The background presence in the story of a few big names in enterprise tech, namely Oracle CTO and co-founder Larry Ellison, and Bret Taylor, co-CEO of Salesforce. The latter was chair of Twitter’s board of directors until Musk’s takeover became reality.
Both Ellison and Taylor popped up in documents in the legal proceedings brought by Twitter to force Musk’s hand and continue with his mega-purchase. Musk, as you may remember, had gotten feet so cold they probably resembled the Twitter logo in color.
As we covered back in May, Ellison agreed to pump $1bn of his own cash into the Twitter funding pool for his friend Musk. Court documents from September cataloguing Musk’s texts related to the purchase saw Ellison casually offering “a billion…or whatever you recommend” in reply to Musk’s messages.
Oracle is no stranger to social media; once upon a time it hosted servers for the ancient Bebo network before bankruptcy ended the party. These days its servers host data for U.S. users of social app TikTok.
Salesforce’s Taylor meanwhile came up on Musk’s enemy side of the equation, practically begging the Tesla CEO to talk things through about taking Twitter private.
“Do you have five minutes so I can understand the context?” Taylor texted. “Can you take 10 minutes to talk this through with me? It has been about 24 hours since you joined the board. I get your point, but just want to understand about the sudden pivot.”
As of today, Taylor is no more at Twitter, presumably having been given the boot by a ruthless Musk.
We await to see what Elon ultimately does with Ellison’s money. The tech firebrand has plans to bungle Twitter into a proposed ‘everything’ app called X, bringing to mind super-apps such as China’s WeChat.
Just don’t expect a super-app to one day dominate the ERP-sphere, no matter the billions in wealth that may be owned by an individual or company. It’s just too complex to achieve, even if more and more users are looking for mobile-level UX in enterprise.
Maybe Musk’s plan is also a deluded one. Let’s hope Twitter doesn’t end up like Bebo…
One more thing to note: Larry Ellison hasn’t tweeted since 2012.