After months of playing the hide-and-seek game, looks like Elon Musk is finally going to buy Twitter. The world's richest man has reportedly proposed to buy the company at the originally agreed-on price of $44 billion.
Musk wrote to Twitter on Monday (October 3) saying he would change course and abide by his April agreement to buy the company for $54.20 per share, if Twitter dropped its litigation against him, reported Reuters.
Shares of Twitter closed 1.3% lower at $51.30 on Wednesday. Twitter had won the first round of legal battle as a US judge had refused to push the trial date to February and it was set for October 17.
Twitter's response: In response, Twitter said it intends to close the deal at $54.20 per share after receiving the letter from Musk. But the company stopped short of saying it's dropping the lawsuit against the billionaire Tesla CEO, reported the AP.
What happens next? Chancellor Kathaleen St Jude McCormick, the Delaware Chancery Court's head judge, made clear that nothing had changed for the court, AP reported. "The parties have not filed a stipulation to stay this action, nor has any party moved for a stay," she wrote. "I, therefore, continue to press on toward our trial set to begin on October 17," she said.
Musk's lawyer told Twitter that the Tesla CEO will complete the deal as long as he lines up the promised debt financing. Two firms that were interested in partly financing the deal, Apollo Global Management Inc and Sixth Street Partners, had ended talks to provide up to a combined $1 billion, two sources told Reuters.
The Twitter deal: Musk struck a deal to buy Twitter for USD 44 billion on April 26. Musk had bought a nine per cent stake in Twitter earlier in April, and then offered to buy the whole company outright.
Musk had agreed to pay USD 54.20 for every share of Twitter. "Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated," he said in a statement.
The spam bot issue: Musk has said that the real number of spam bots on Twitter may be four times higher than the company's estimates. Bots are fake accounts not controlled by a person and can be used on social media to spread misinformation.
Twitter chief executive Parag Agrawal had said that fewer than five per cent of accounts active on any given day on Twitter are bots.