Musk tells Twitter employees they can still receive stock

In this illustration, Elon Musk’s Twitter account is shown on a mobile phone screen with the Twitter logo in the background. A whistleblower’s complaint that Twitter misled federal regulators about the company’s security risks could give Elon Musk fresh ammunition in his bid not to buy the company for $44 billion.

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Twitter’s new owner Elon Musk told employees on Monday that they can continue to receive stock and options as part of an “ongoing compensation plan,” even though the company is now private, according to an internal memo seen by CNBC.

Musk said the stock plan will resemble the one in place at SpaceX, where he is also CEO. SpaceX regularly conducts secondary offerings as a way for longtime shareholders to sell shares, as the company remains private more than 20 years after its founding.

SpaceX employees receive stock awards twice a year, on May 15 and November 15. 15.

Musk told Twitter employees that they will be awarded “exceptional amounts” of stock for “exceptional performance.”

The billionaire began taking control of the social media company after closing its $44 billion acquisition last October. 28. His leadership has been marked by mass layoffs, pauses in spending by some advertisers, and confusion over platform policy changes. When Musk first took over, some Twitter employees were worried he was rushing to fire them before a crucial vesting date. However, many were paid before Musk implemented a massive workforce reduction.

Read Musk’s message to employees:

Although Twitter is now a private company, we will continue to offer stock and options as part of our ongoing compensation plan.

The stock plan will be very similar to that of SpaceX, which has been very successful. As with SpaceX, exceptional amounts of stock will be awarded for exceptional performance.

Thank you,

Elon

— CNBC’s Lora Kolodny and Michael Sheetz contributed to this report

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