Billionaire Elon Musk buys Twitter for $44 billion
Tesla founder and billionaire Elon Musk has acquired the social media giant Twitter for $44 billion after the board accepting his offer to go private Monday.
“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” Musk said in a statement after his purchase went through. “I also want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans.”
Trading at below $40 before Musk decided to bid for $54 a share. Twitter’s board was originally reluctant to accept the bid and even enacted a shareholders’ rights plan known as a ‘poison pill’ to protect the company from what it deemed a hostile takeover. But earlier this week, reports emerged that Twitter executives had begun warming up to discussing the deal. Twitter shares have jumped by over 35% since Musk announced his acquisition plans. They were trading above $52 per share in early trading on Monday.
The Tesla founder a regular on Twitter with 81.5 million followers was forced to buy Twitter in order to safeguard “free speech” after several of his tweets landed him in hot water with US regulators.
Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal would get an estimated $42 million if he were terminated within 12 months of a change in control at the social media company, according to research firm Equilar. He had told employees that finalising the billion dollar Musk takeover will take six months.
In his SEC on April 14 Musk had said he did not have confidence in Twitter’s management.
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