Australian tech billionaire takes aim at Elon Musk’s ‘return to power’ directive By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Elon Musk looks at his cell phone in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S. January 19, 2020. REUTERS/Joe Skipper/File Photo

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Elon Musk got into a Twitter row (NYSE:) with Australia’s third-richest man on Friday over the value of ending the pandemic-era remote working habit.

In an internal email this week, the chief executive of Tesla (NASDAQ:) Inc said that “everyone at Tesla is required to spend at least 40 hours in the office per week,” and “if you don’t show up , we’ll assume you quit”. This has drawn criticism from worker advocates over potential exposure to the coronavirus.

The co-founder of Australian project management software maker Atlassian (NASDAQ:) Plc, Scott Farquhar, derided the directive in a series of tweets as being “like something from the 1950s”. The US-listed company’s “work from anywhere” policy was “key to our continued growth”, he said.

“We aim to grow Atlassian to 25,000 employees by FY26,” Farquhar concluded. “Interested Tesla employees? »

Musk fired back, “The series of tweets above illustrates why recessions perform a vital economic cleansing function.”

The exchange is not unusual for Musk, who frequently takes to Twitter to make shameless statements about sensitive topics.

In Silicon Valley, many tech companies have moved to mixed home and office work during the pandemic, while others have set back-to-office dates only to push them back as new outbreaks arise. .

Musk, the richest man in the world and also CEO of SpaceX, is also used to going up against other billionaires. In 2021, he posted an image of a second-place medal in response to a tweet from Jeff Bezos celebrating the success of Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:).

In 2017, Farquhar’s Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes cooperated with Musk, publicly accepting and facilitating his bid to provide a powerful Tesla battery installation for the state of South Australia after suffering a power outage. electricity in 2017.

Cannon-Brookes, who has since led a campaign to buy Australian energy company AGL Energy (OTC:) Ltd and accelerate its transition to renewables, reposted Farquhar’s remarks criticizing Musk’s return to power order.

(This story corrects to change from “US-listed” to “London-listed” in paragraph 3)

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