Twitter Gives Green Light for Elon Musk's Big Buyout, but That Still Doesn't Seal the Deal
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Twitter's board of directors on Tuesday "unanimously recommended" to its shareholders that they vote to approve Tesla and Space X CEO Elon Musk's $44 billion offer to acquire the social media company.
"The Twitter Board, after considering various factors described in the section of this proxy statement captioned 'The Merger— Recommendation of the Twitter Board and Reasons for the Merger,' has unanimously: (1) determined that the merger agreement is advisable and the merger and the other transactions contemplated by the merger agreement are fair to, advisable and in the best interests of Twitter and its stockholders; and (2) adopted and approved the merger," the company wrote in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing signed by Parag Agrawal, Twitter's CEO and Bret Taylor, the chairman of the board of directors.
Musk's acquisition would take Twitter private at $54.20 per share. The deal is currently expected to close later this year.
Musk reiterated his desire to move forward with the acquisition last week during a virtual meeting with Twitter employees.
On Tuesday at the Qatar Economic Forum in a Zoom interview with Bloomberg, Musk said the approval of the deal by shareholders was one of several "unresolved matters" that must be finalized in the Twitter deal.
Besides shareholder approval, Musk said debt financing for the deal would need to come together. According to Fox Business, he has promised $33.5 billion in equity financing in addition to commitments from Stanley Senior Funding Inc. and other financial institutions for up to $13 billion in debt financing.
Musk also said he awaits the resolution of his dispute with Twitter over the total percentage of spam and fake accounts on the platform, which he told Bloomberg was "a very significant matter."
As CBN News reported earlier this month, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal has said that Twitter has consistently estimated that fewer than 5% of its accounts are spam. But Musk has disputed that contending in a May tweet, that without providing evidence, 20% or more are bogus. He threatened to walk away from the deal, accusing Twitter of refusing to give him the information he requested so he could evaluate how many of the company's 229 million accounts are fake.
Twitter later said it would share its information and even reportedly offered full access to the company's raw data including the platform's 500 million daily tweets.
Yahoo News reported shares of Twitter were up more than 2% amid a broader market uptick Tuesday but were still trading under $39 per share — nearly 30% below Musk's bid price, underscoring continued investor skepticism that the deal will close.
During the interview, Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait asked Musk whether there is a limit to who should be allowed on Twitter.
"My aspiration for Twitter, or in general for the digital town square, would be that it is as inclusive in the broadest sense of the word as possible," he replied. "It obviously cannot be a place where people feel uncomfortable or harassed, or they'll simply not use it."
According to Forbes, Musk, 50, is now the richest person in the world with a net worth of more than $219 billion. In addition to Tesla and Space X, the billionaire entrepreneur is the founder of The Boring Company, an American infrastructure, and tunnel construction services company with projects designed for intra-city transit systems. He's also the co-founder of PayPal and the brain tech company, Neuralink.
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