- by Admin
ELON MUSK WANTS TO BUY TWITTER: HERE IS EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW
In a new filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Musk laid out his plan for the $46.5 billion worth of loans that will allow him to finance the buyout offer made on April 14th. The funding will be provided through two debt commitment letters from Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, in which the bank promises a series of loans worth $25.5 billion. The remaining $21 billion will be covered by Musk himself.
Notably, the filing does not list any equity partners to share the cash burden with Musk. The Tesla CEO already owns a 9 percent stake in Twitter, valued at roughly $2.9 billion.
A thousand years ago, on April 4th, 2022, Elon Musk announced that he had purchased 9.1 percent of Twitter. The news that the worlds richest man was now (briefly) the largest shareholder in his preferred social media platform sent the stock price soaring and many a keyboard a-typing.
Musk immediately set about soliciting suggestions about ways to improve Twitter by what else tweeting a poll. The company responded by offering him a board seat, a move that would have restricted him to owning just 15 percent of the company. At first, he said yes. Then he changed his mind and said no. Meanwhile, our resident Twitter and Musk experts, Casey Newton and Liz Lopatto, respectively, dug deeper into why Musk was flirting with Twitter and what the likely outcomes would be.
After declining a seat on Twitters board, Musk updated his filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission to indicate that he would not be a passive player in the companys affairs. Gone was the language that he would restrict his holdings to just 14.0 percent of the company. In retrospect, this was the first clue that he may attempt something more impactful than just buying some stock of serving as a board member.
Platformers Casey Newton is not the only one who did not believe Musk would launch a hostile takeover of Twitter. After news broke that Musk had acquired 9.1 percent of the companys shares, many people briefly entertained the notion that Musk might try to buy the whole company, only to eventually conclude he had already gotten everything he wanted out of Twitter.
Casey was right in positing that Twitters poison pill provisions may not be enough to stop Musk. But he also assumed that Musk would just continue to troll the company through his tweets which certainly still is a likely outcome.
Anyone who is been in the market to buy a house knows about *best and final* offers. In his opening salvo, Musk claims his bid to buy Twitter is exactly that. Whether that bolsters his position or ends up painting him into a corner is too early to say. But it is clear that he is offering Twitters shareholders a pretty fair premium: $43 billion for a company with a $37 billion market cap.
Musk says that Twitter must go private in order to undergo the changes that need to be made. These include an edit feature, an open-source algorithm, less moderation, and a higher bar for removing offending tweets.
Musk is a very rich guy. So, naturally, he would say that he is not interested in buying Twitter to make money. He views Twitter as the *de facto town square* and wants to open source the social media companys algorithm. He is trying to frame the whole takeover bid as some sort of crusade to protect free speech.
But even a free speech maximalist like Musk needs to convince shareholders that his buyout offer is in their financial self-interest. Otherwise, what are we really doing here?
Musk is a prolific Twitter user. He is also a troll, and Liz Lopatto lays out what exactly he will need to do in order to get people to take him more seriously. Musk has a tendency to shoot from the hip, but several corporate governance experts told us they doubt he actually thought this whole thing out.
He has not lined up the financing to buy Twitter and take it private. He is working with Morgan Stanley, but its anyone guess whether he is actually listening to them. Musk himself said he may not win in the end. If he succeeds in pressuring Twitter to make the changes he wants, he may just retract his bid. All things are possible.
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