In a surprise turnaround, tech billionaire Elon Musk has gone forward with a deal to buy Twitter for $54.20 a share. Stocks of the social media platform quickly soared by 22% on Tuesday after the deal was announced.
This comes just weeks after Musk backed out of an agreement after Twitter was valued at $44 billion. Twitter swiftly sued Musk to force him to go through with the deal, with a trial previously scheduled for 17th October.
But some believe Musk has grander plans for Twitter than continuing with just the existing platform. Inspired by China’s WeChat, Musk is expected to create a new app called ‘X’, following his Twitter purchase. He called X the “everything app” in a recent tweet. Although he has released few details about his grand plan for the new app, experts believe the Tesla CEO wants to create a one-stop-shop platform comparable to the “super-apps” of Asia.
At present, WeChat has over one billion China users. But the app is different to most social media, allowing users to order groceries, book fitness classes, pay utility bills and much, much more, all within one app. Other similar apps have emerged across Asia such as Grab (GRAB) in Singapore and Malaysia and Line in Japan.
In June, Musk discussed his plans: “I think an important goal for Twitter would be to try to include as much of the country, as much of the world, as possible,” he said. “You basically live on WeChat in China because it’s so usable and helpful to daily life, and I think if we can achieve that, or even get close to that at Twitter, it would be an immense success,” Musk added.