Twitter CEO teases banking and payment plans in memo about X rebrand

It’s long been rumored that Musk is keen to bring fintech features to Twitter.

Emin Sansar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Twitter’s rebrand to X is officially underway, and CEO Linda Yaccarino has offered some new clues about what it may mean for the company. In a memo reported by CNBC, Yaccarino suggested that payments and banking features could feature prominently in Elon Musk’s new vision.

“Our usage is at an all time high and we’ll continue to delight our entire community with new experiences in audio, video, messaging, payments, banking – creating a global marketplace for ideas, goods, services, and opportunities,” she wrote.

It’s long been rumored that Musk is keen to bring banking features to Twitter. In January, the Financial Times reported that he wanted “to offer fintech services such as peer-to-peer transactions, savings accounts and debit cards” to users, as well as additional tipping and shopping features. The paper reported the company had applied for regulatory paperwork necessary to offer such features in the US, but the executive reportedly overseeing the project departed in February.

Yaccarino’s memo suggests those plans have been revived, though it’s light on specifics. Musk has previously talked about his desire to turn Twitter into an “everything app” akin to WeChat in China, where the messaging app is central to users’ daily activities.

Overall, Yaccarino’s memo is notably vague. She said that X would “go even further to transform the global town square” and cited recent updates the company has made around creator monetization and longform content. “Many companies say they want to move fast — but we enjoy moving at the speed of light, and when we do, that’s X,” she wrote. “With X, we serve our entire community of users and customers by working tirelessly to preserve free expression and choice, create limitless interactivity, and create a marketplace that enables the economic success of all its participants.”

In a response to a tweet (or an "x") about companies changing names, Elon Musk seems to confirm the company's fintech plans. X will "add comprehensive communications and the ability to conduct your entire financial world" over the coming months, he said. He also explained that rebranding the website is not as simple as "a company renaming itself." With people being able to post more than 140 characters and the ways X intends to branch out in the future, Musk wrote, "the Twitter name does not make sense" anymore.

Update 07/25/23 1AM ET: Added Elon Musk's explanation for rebranding.

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