What do a soda dispenser, Apple Thunderbolt monitor, Fender F-230CE electric acoustic guitar and oil painting of Barack and Michelle Obama have in common? They’re all items slated to be in an upcoming auction of Twitter’s office assets, which will see more than 500 lots sold in September as the company faces continued financial issues and an identity upheaval.
Auctioning off the numerous signs, tables and items adorned with or shaped like Twitter’s blue bird logo makes sense for the company, which recently rebranded to “X” at the behest of owner Elon Musk. But in response to falling revenue and hefty debt, the company is also selling off a plethora of ordinary office items ranging from furniture to conference equipment.
In July, Musk revealed that Twitter’s cash flow is still negative, tweeting that it needs “to reach positive cash flow before we have the luxury of anything else.” While the company claims to have reduced its non-debt expenditures to $1.5 billion from $4.5 billion, Twitter must still pay annual interest of $1.5 billion because of the debt it accumulated during Musk’s $44 billion acquisition in October. The company, which is facing competition from Meta’s launch of Threads, has also faced a number of lawsuits for late payments on office rents, private jets and luxury gift boxes, and advertising revenue has dropped by 50 percent, according to Musk.
What is Twitter selling?
As it attempts to turn a profit, Twitter will sell off hundreds of items in the Twitter Rebranding: Online Auction Featuring Memorabilia, Art, Office Assets & More auction hosted by Heritage Global Partners, an auction, liquidation and asset advisory firm that has previously sold lab equipment from Covid-19 sites and held a liquidation auction for LCH Aerospace.
For a starting bid of $25, Twitter enthusiasts can get their hands on bird-shaped tables, blue hashtag sculptures and even a podium decorated with the company’s logo. A bird cage-shaped swinging couch is also up for sale, as are several bird-themed artworks such as Paula McCarthy’s Bird Watching triptych and Keith Gidlund’s Bird Chimney & Branches photograph.
Large company logo signage is also going on the block—even the Twitter bird hanging in the company’s San Francisco headquarters is up for sale. So, too, are the trademark exterior signs, which remain mounted on the company headquarters and will require buyers to hire an “SF Licensed Company with appropriate Permits,” according to the listing.
Beyond the bird, bidders can snap up benign unbranded office furniture, including desks, chairs and refrigerators, along with printers, video conferencing systems and digital whiteboards. Listings indicative of the perks formerly available to Twitter’s employees include built-in restaurant booths and tables, a beer dispenser and the aforementioned soda machine. The lots also include a surprising array of musical instruments, ranging from guitars to keyboards. There’s even a DJ booth.
And then there are the more bizarre listings. An oil painting celebrating Barack Obama’s viral tweet in 2012 following his re-election is included among the 584 lots, as is a painting recreating the famous selfie taken and tweeted by Ellen DeGeneres at the 2014 Academy Awards. Meanwhile, avid fans of the late comedian Robin Williams can purchase a photo mosaic of the actor compiled from celebrity tribute tweets.
This isn’t the first time Twitter has held an auction of old office equipment. In January, the company sold more than 600 items from its San Francisco headquarters, also hosted by Heritage Global Partners. While the auctioneer didn’t disclose final sale prices, bids for a large blue bird statue reportedly reached $100,000.
Twitter did not respond to requests for comment.