Gizmodo:

Image: Michele Ursi (Shutterstock)

If the ship’s going down, at least the employees all get a piece of the pie. As X (the platform formerly known as Twitter) continues to devalue itself with decisions that are scaring off advertisers and pissing off users, owner Elon Musk is at least willing to offer some stock to company employees.

The X staff received an email this morning indicating that they would be receiving restricted stock units, or RSUs, this morning as a portion of their compensation, according to a report from Fortune Monday. Those stock shares will reportedly be equivalent to $45 and would put the company’s valuation at $19 billion, less than half the $44 billion he paid for the social media platform last year.

Twitter did not immediately return Gizmodo’s request for more information on the new stock options.

X has also received an updated valuation, or should we say devaluation, by Fidelity on Sunday, which is one of the banks that financed Musk’s initial purchase. Fidelity wrote down its valuation of Musk’s company an additional 8% this September, with the bank reducing its valuation a total of 65% over the prior 11 months, Axios reported. In May, Fidelity estimated that X was worth 33% of the initial $44 billion Musk initially paid for it. Things were looking up in the following months when Fidelity marked up the company’s value by 11% in July and 8% in August, only for things to continue to crater shortly thereafter.

X has struggled with profitability almost nonstop since Musk took over the platform last fall. Most prominently, advertisers have continued to distance themselves from the platform after Musk’s quest to create a bastion of free speech has let ads for major companies run next to problematic content.

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MuskWire TLDR:

X (formerly known as Twitter) is facing a decline in value and a loss of advertisers and users. In an effort to boost morale, owner Elon Musk has offered stock options to company employees. The stock shares are equivalent to $45 and would value the company at $19 billion, less than half of what Musk paid for it last year. Fidelity, one of the banks that financed Musk’s purchase, has also devalued X by an additional 8% this September, bringing the total reduction in valuation to 65% over the past 11 months. X has struggled with profitability since Musk took over, with advertisers distancing themselves due to the platform’s tolerance of problematic content alongside their ads.