Elon Musk Launches Hostile Takeover of Twitter

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Posted: Apr 14, 2022 8:00 AM
Elon Musk Launches Hostile Takeover of Twitter

Source: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File

Elon Musk, after making waves when he became Twitter's largest shareholder with a 9.2 percent stake and rejected an offer to join the social media company's board, is charting a different path in order to change the way Twitter works. 

Calling it his "best and final" offer, Musk is seeking to buy 100 percent of Twitter at a price of $54.20 per share for a whopping $43 billion price tag in a move that calls the bluffs of those who claimed Musk was just trolling Twitter with his comments about ways the platform could be improved. Now, he's literally putting his money where his mouth is. 

Musk explained in a letter to Twitter's board that he believes the company "will neither thrive nor serve societal imperative in its current form" and therefore "Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company.”

Musk made the case for his offer in that letter, revealed via SEC filing early Thursday morning:

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. 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. As a result, I am offering to buy 100% of Twitter for $54.20 per share in cash, a 54% premium over the day before I began investing in Twitter and a 38% premium over the day before my investment was publicly announced. My offer is my best and final offer and if it is not accepted, I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder. Twitter has extraordinary potential. I will unlock it.

Bloomberg noted that Musk, who is worth more than $250 billion, can handily afford to buy Twitter outright, and it seems Musk is taking an all-or-nothing stance regarding his position with the company. While not explicit in his letter to Twitter's board, Musk's statement that he would "need to reconsider" his position as a shareholder if the offer isn't accepted seems to be a veiled threat to dump his shares that amount to nearly 10 percent of the company's stock.

Twitter shares rose some 18 percent on the news that Musk was launching his hostile takeover — mirroring the jump that came when it was made public previously that Musk had become Twitter's biggest individual shareholder — while Tesla stock decreased around 1.5 percent.

Musk has been a frequent critic of Twitter in posts shared with his more than 80 million followers, and since snapping up more than nine percent of Twitter's shares he's polled users on several potential changes for the company including an edit button for tweets and turning the company's San Francisco headquarters into a homeless shelter. 

Fox's Dagen McDowell pointed out that Twitter's current leadership might finally be feeling a tinge of regret over the platform's biased policy enforcement that continues to see conservatives disproportionately punished.

Not to mention Twitter's decision to prevent its users from sharing The New York Post's story about Hunter Biden's laptop from hell leading up to the 2020 presidential election, a story that has conveniently been confirmed by The New York Times and Washington Post more than one year after Biden took office.