Elon Musk close to buying Twitter

The Tesla and SpaceX CEO has been courting the San Francisco-based social media giant for nearly a month

Elon Musk close to buying Twitter

Elon Musk’s nearly month-long courtship of Twitter is almost over.

The San Francisco-based company is close to selling to the Tesla and SpaceX CEO for around $43 billion in cash, Reuters reported. Musk, the world's richest person according to Forbes, has negotiated to buy Twitter in a personal capacity and Tesla isn’t involved in the deal. He revealed last week that he had lined up $46.5 billion in financing to acquire the company.

According to an SEC filing, Musk offered to acquire all the shares he doesn’t already own for $54.20 per share, valuing the social media giant at $43.4 billion. That represents a 38% premium over the closing price on April 1, the last trading day before Musk disclosed that he had become Twitter's biggest shareholder, CNN Business reported. Musk said the cash offer was his “best and final offer,” according to the SEC filing, adding that if it's not accepted, he would have to reconsider his position as a shareholder.

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“I invested in Twitter as I believe in its potential to be the platform for free speech around the globe, and I believe free speech is a societal imperative for a functioning democracy,” Musk said in a letter he sent to Twitter. “However, since making my investment I now realize the company will neither thrive nor serve this societal imperative in its current form. Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company.”

In response to Musk’s bid, Twitter's board enacted a so-called poison pill that would make it more difficult for him to acquire the company without its approval. However, Twitter's board met Sunday to seriously evaluate Musk's offer, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Angelo Zino, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research, said that Twitter's board more seriously considering the offer may have come “from the board's realization that an alternative bid from a 'white knight' may be difficult to come by, especially following the decline in asset prices from social media companies in recent weeks/months,” CNN reported.

Recently, Musk purchased 9.2% of Twitter’s shares. He’s far ahead atop the list of the highest paid CEOs and executives in 2020 with $6,658,803,818 total compensation that year, according to a Bloomberg report. Shortly after Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal announced that Musk was joining the board, Agrawal shared that the entrepreneur decided not to serve in the upper echelon of the social media giant.

The announcement came just a couple of days after Musk tweeted: “Is Twitter dying?”

On April 9, Musk shared a tweet from World of Statistics showing the top 10 most followed Twitter accounts. The list included the accounts of Barrack Obama (@BarackObama with 131.4 million followers), Justin Bieber (@justinbieber with 114.3 million followers) and Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13 with 90.3 million followers), among others.

“Most of these ‘top’ accounts tweet rarely and post very little content,” Musk said. “For example, @taylorswift13 hasn’t posted anything in 3 months. And @justinbieber only posted once this entire year.”

On March 25, Musk started a poll via a tweet, saying: “Free speech is essential to a functioning democracy. Do you believe Twitter rigorously adheres to this principle?” Musk previously said that he is “looking forward to working with Parag & Twitter board to make significant improvements to Twitter in coming months!”

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