Twitter, Inc. on Thursday confirmed to The Wall Street Journal that it had laid off 30% of its talent acquisition team.
The news came amid a report that Elon Musk’s $44 billion deal to buy the company appeared to be in serious jeopardy because the Tesla CEO’s team could not verify the amount of fake Twitter accounts.
Twitter in May announced that it would pause hiring and seek to cut costs.
WSJ reported that the layoffs, confirmed by a Twitter spokesperson, were expected to affect fewer than 100 people and were limited to the talent acquisition team.
“I am overwhelmed; nervous and anxious but trying to stay optimistic about the future,” one laid-off recruiter wrote on LinkedIn.
Twitter joined other tech companies that have announced layoffs and/or hiring freezes/reductions as stock prices fall and fears of recession grow. Those companies included Microsoft Corp., Snap Inc., and Facebook parent Meta Platforms, Inc.
One Twitter employee told WSJ that laid-off workers woke up on Thursday with 30-minute meetings having been put onto their calendars.
Also on Thursday, Twitter executives defended the accuracy of their calculation of spam accounts on the social media platform. Company officials told reporters that spam accounts made up less than 5% of the company’s daily monetizable users (users who are logged in and authenticated).
The officials also said that Twitter removes more than 1 million spam accounts each day.
Musk, though, has suggested that the number of fake accounts could be closer to 20%.
The Post reported that the Musk-Twitter deal will likely end up in the courts, particularly if Musk refuses to pay the $1 billion break-up provision in the offer.
Twitter, which has said it intends to complete the deal, argues that Musk will be required to pay or complete the purchase if his reasoning is not based on the business’ fundamentals.
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