Elon Musk has launched a $41.39 billion hostile takeover of Twitter, the world’s most influential social media platform.
On early Thursday, Musk made his “best and final” offer to buy Twitter Inc., stating that he intends to unlock the company’s “extraordinary potential.” As predicted by Rebel News on Monday, Musk’s rejection of a position on the company’s board of directors unshackled him to purchase more than 14.9% of the stock.
Musk’s current 9.1% stake in the company makes him Twitter’s largest individual shareholder.
"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," said Musk in a statement.
According to Bloomberg, Musk, who’s the world’s richest man, will pay $54.20 per share in cash, representing a 54% premium over the company’s Jan. 28 closing price. It will cost Musk a cool $41.39 billion – above its current market valuation of $37 billion.
Musk, who’s worth around $260 billion, can certainly afford the purchase.
Musk announced the offer in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Thursday. He first disclosed a stake of 9% on April 4.
The company responded to Musk’s initial purchase of stock by offering him a position on its board of directors. Musk rejected the offer.
Musk, who remains one of the platform’s most influential and most vocal firebrands, first expressed his desire to revive the marketplace of ideas when he criticized the company late last month. Querying his 80 million followers, Musk asked if they believed Twitter adhered to the principles of free speech. Over 70% of respondents voted “no.”
Since purchasing 9.1% of the company’s stock, Musk has remained vocal of Twitter’s management, poor features, and heavy-handed censorship. Musk proposed offering an automated form of validation for premium “Twitter Blue” users, suggesting they be given a verification checkmark different from the current checkmarks provided to journalists, celebrities, company accounts, and persons of interest.
At one point, Musk suggested emptying out Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco to convert it into a homeless shelter. Fox News host Tucker Carlson said Tuesday that Musk “seems to be our last hope” for free speech on the internet.
“It would mean a return to free and fair elections in the United States,” said the Fox News host. “A system in which both sides are allowed to make their case to the public and then the public can decide, it’s called democracy.”
“And above all, a free Twitter would mean a direct challenge to the people in charge of our country’s institutions, many of whom are incompetent,” Carlson said.