Musk debunks rumors that he is laying off Twitter employees to avoid payouts

Elon Musk, the new owner of Twitter, has refuted a New York Times claim that he plans to lay off Twitter staff before November 1 to avoid stock grants due that day.

Musk responded to a Twitter user who inquired about layoffs by tweeting, “This is incorrect.”

The New York Times claimed on Saturday that Musk has ordered company-wide employment cuts, with certain teams to be reduced more than others and that layoffs will occur prior to November 1, when staff is slated to get stock awards as part of their remuneration.

The Times claimed that the layoffs might begin as early as Saturday, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the subject.

According to media reports published on Saturday, Musk sacked key executives in an effort to avoid paying out huge severance packages and was planning other layoffs for the same day.

According to Reuters, Musk sacked Twitter’s chief executive Parag Agrawal, chief financial officer Ned Segal, and legal affairs and policy leader Vijaya Gadde after completing a $44 billion takeover of the social media network on Thursday.

Regarding the quantity of phony accounts on the network, he accused them of deceiving him and Twitter’s investors. According to the research company Equilar, the executives stood to collect almost $122 million in parting payments.

The Information stated, citing anonymous sources with knowledge of the situation, that Elon Musk fired four top Twitter executives, including Agrawal and Segal, “for cause” in an apparent attempt to dodge severance compensation and unvested stock awards.

Rich Greenfield, an analyst at LightShed, tweeted on Saturday that Musk dismissed senior Twitter executives “for cause,” preventing their unvested shares from vesting as a result of a change in ownership.

Twitter did not reply to Reuters’ request for comment immediately. Reuters was unable to quickly reach the terminated executives.

Courtney Yu, director of research at Equilar, told Reuters on Friday that the terminated executives “should be receiving these (severance) payments unless Elon Musk has grounds for termination, which in these circumstances is often because they violated the law or company policy.”