Elon Musk offers to buy Twitter for $41.3 billion, saying the company 'needs to be transformed'
Tesla CEO Elon Musk is offering to buy Twitter, a swift turn just days after deciding not to join the social media company's board of directors.
Twitter Inc. said in a regulatory filing Thursday that Musk provided a letter to the company the day prior with a proposal to buy the remaining shares.
The 50-year-old business mogul, currently the richest man in the world, already has 9% stock of Twitter – making him the biggest shareholder.
In the Wednesday letter, Musk offered $54.20 per share of Twitter's stock, which comes out to $41.3 billion, and said that would be his final offer.
Musk's offer is slightly higher than Twitter's current market cap value of $36.7 billion.
“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.”
Musk revealed over recent weeks that he'd been buying shares in almost daily batches starting Jan. 31, prompting Twitter to quickly give Musk a seat on its board on the condition
that he does not own more than 14.9% of the company’s outstanding stock, according to a filing.
But Musk backed out of the deal and launched a series of since-deleted tweets about how to better the company – all before this takeover attempt.
Members of the board took issue with his surge to 9% stock, filing a lawsuit on Tuesday on behalf of Twitter's shareholders,
arguing that Musk did not file a Schedule 13 with the SEC within the required time
and instead continued to amass Twitter shares.
"By failing to timely disclose his ownership stake, Musk was able to acquire shares of Twitter less expensively during the Class Period," the lawsuit states.
The news didn't come without backlash. Venture capitalist Fred Wilson, who recently invested in Twitter and Etsy, condemned Musk's move in a tweet.