Donald Trump held a star-studded meeting with bosses from America’s biggest technology companies on Wednesday in a charm offensive against an industry that vocally opposed his election, but the meeting appeared more awkward than productive.

Photos from the event showed many of the attendees from the tech industry grimacing or looking downright despairing while Trump, at the centre of the table, led the meeting.

The attendees had a combined wealth of some $143.5bn (£115bn), according to various estimates of the individuals, making it one of the most valuable meetings in history.

Trump with tech investor Peter Thiel and Apple chief executive Tim Cook
Trump with tech investor Peter Thiel and Apple chief executive Tim Cook CREDIT: GETTY
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos CREDIT: REX FEATURES
Tesla's Elon Musk
Tesla’s Elon Musk CREDIT: AP
Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg
Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg CREDIT: BLOOMBERG

Trump, with a net worth estimated at $3.7bn, was only the fifth richest person in the room, with Amazon’s Jeff Bezos ($66.4bn), Alphabet’s (Google’s parent company) Larry Page ($39.5bn), Tesla and SpaceX boss Elon Musk ($11.5bn), and Alphabet chairman Eric Schmidt ($11.5bn) in attendance.

The bosses of Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, Cisco, Intel and Palantir were also present, as well as Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer.

Twitter was reportedly not invited to the event, despite Donald Trump’s love of the service, because it had refused to create an anti-Hillary Clinton emoji.

Apple's Tim Cook, Oracle's Safra Catz and Tesla's Elon Musk
Apple’s Tim Cook, Oracle’s Safra Catz and Tesla’s Elon Musk CREDIT: EPA
Trump with tech bosses
Trump looked to embrace the tech bosses, in contrast to attacks he had made on the campaign trail CREDIT: REX
There were 25 people round the table at the meeting
There were 25 people round the table at the meeting at Trump Tower CREDIT: REX

As well as all the tech bosses, there was a large contingent of Trump’s transition team and family members, including his sons Eric and Donald Jr, daughter Ivanka and son in law Jared Kushner, who is also an advisor to the president elect.

The group reportedly talked about education, immigration and trade. In his opening remarks Trump said: “I’m here to help you folks do well. And you’re doing very well right now and I’m honoured by the [stock market] bounce.

“We want you to keep going with the incredible innovation. There’s nobody like you in the world. In the world.”

The meeting had been brokered by Peter Thiel, a billionaire tech investor who co-founded PayPal and who supported Trump. The two had a somewhat awkward handshake during Trump’s opening remarks, however.

Trump and Peter Thiel
Trump and Peter Thiel CREDIT: REX

Some of Trump’s most vocal criticisms during the election were of Apple, saying that: “We’re going to get Apple to build their damn computers and things in this country instead of in other countries,” and of Bezos, who owns the Washington Post as well as running Amazon.

He said that Amazon will “have such problems” in February. The meeting on Wednesday was somewhat more congenial, with Bezos saying he was “super excited about the possibilities this could be the innovation administration”.

Amazon's Jeff Bezos
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos