Elon Musk has made a public offer to acquire 100 percent of Twitter stock and transform it into a private company, according to the billionaire SpaceX and Tesla CEO, who believes this will unleash Twitter’s potential to be “the worldwide platform for free speech.”
Elon Musk, who bought 9.2 percent of Twitter stock in recent weeks and would become the company’s largest shareholder if he fully acquired it, made a public offer to purchase 100 percent of the firm at $54.20 per share, an 18 percent premium above Twitter’s closing price on Wednesday.
At the price Musk has stated, the proposed purchase of Twitter would be worth $43 billion in total.
In his open letter to the Twitter board chairman, which you may read in full here, Musk explained why he made the offer. He said it was for the sake of promoting free speech around the world.
Elon Musk said he did not think Twitter could realize its full potential as a publicly traded corporation, noting that it needs to be changed to a private firm.
Below is the full letter Musk wrote:
Chairman of the Board,
I bought into Twitter because I think it has the ability to become a global platform for free speech, and I believe that freedom of expression is an essential component of a healthy democracy.
However, since I made my investment, I’ve learned that the firm will most certainly not thrive in its present form. The company needs to be turned into a private corporation in order to fulfill this societal obligation effectively.
As a result, I’m making an all-cash offer to buy 100% of Twitter for $54.20 per share, a 54 percent premium over the prior day’s price and a 38 percent premium above the open market price on the day before I started investing in Twitter. My offer is my final and best; if it is not accepted, I will have to reconsider my status as a shareholder.
Twitter has extraordinary potential. I will unlock it.
In exchange for a promise that Elon Musk would not acquire more than 14.9 percent of shares in the firm, Twitter offered him a seat on its board. In some jurisdictions, 15% is a crucial line that provides shareholders greater legal protections.
Elon Musk held a poll on Twitter on March 25 asking followers if they thought the platform “rigorously adhered” to the principle of free speech, which he described as “vital to a functioning democracy.”
Free speech is essential to a functioning democracy.
Do you believe Twitter rigorously adheres to this principle?
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 25, 2022
Over 2 million Twitter users voted in the poll, with 70 percent of respondents believing the site did not stick to free speech. Prominent conservatives also chimed in, urging Musk to acquire the platform.
According to SEC documents, Musk had already bought his 9.2 percent stake in Twitter when the poll was conducted. The billionaire acquired his shares in January and reached more than nine percent ownership of Twitter on March 14, 11 days before releasing the poll.