Elon Musk’s Twitter submits paperwork to enter the payments business

(Credit: Ryan Lash/TED)

Elon Musk may seem fully preoccupied with Twitter Blue and its infamous checkmark system for now, but behind the scenes, the social media company seems to be laying the foundation for something more ambitious. As noted in recent reports, Twitter filed registration paperwork last week to pave the way for the company to process payments. 

Musk had been pretty open about the idea of Twitter being an online platform that could be used for financial transactions. During his recent livestream for advertisers on Twitter Spaces, Musk pondered the introduction of a “high-yield” savings feature that could help creators on the platform grow their earnings. 

According to a report from The New York Times, Twitter has submitted a filing with the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), which could help the social media company enter the payment processing business. The paperwork is necessary for any business that intends to offer services such as money transfers and exchanges, among others. 

If Twitter could successfully enter the payments business, Musk could effectively take a step towards his goal of creating an “everything app” of sorts, similar to China’s WeChat. Musk has been an open admirer of WeChat’s “super app” nature, even joking during a previous podcast interview that it would be a great idea to just copy the functionalities of WeChat and launch it in the United States. As noted by Musk in previous comments, his acquisition of Twitter is an “accelerant” of sorts toward the creation of an “everything app.”

Twitter, however, will likely require tons of work on Musk’s part. Musk is currently neck-deep in the social media platform as it rolls out one new feature and change after another. That being said, an entrance into financial technology would actually be familiar territory for Musk, considering his experience with one of his earlier ventures, Musk co-founded in the late 90s, and it became one of the internet’s earliest online banks. would eventually merge with Confinity, and it would later become PayPal. Musk’s earnings from PayPal’s sale to eBay paved the way for his investments in SpaceX and Tesla, the two companies he personally runs today. 

While it remains to be seen if Musk could grow Twitter into one of the world’s most formidable online platforms, it is pretty interesting to see just how fast the social media company has been moving since the Tesla CEO took over. Twitter has never really been the fastest social media company when it comes to innovations, but things seem different now. Needless to say, the next few months and years will be very interesting for Twitter and its users. 

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Elon Musk’s Twitter submits paperwork to enter the payments business
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