Elon Musk now has the funds to directly buy Twitter.
The Tesla and SpaceX CEO is determined to add another notch to his entrepreneurial belt, making a $46.5 billion cash offer for the remaining Twitter shares he doesn’t own.
Musk outlined his new plan in a filing Thursday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The tender offer, which would pay shareholders $54.20 per share, comes after Twitter’s board of directors turned down an earlier $43 billion takeover bid and invoked a so-called ” poison pill”. This plan would have allowed remaining shareholders to buy new shares at a discount if someone, like Musk, bought more than 15% of all shares in the company.
Now, however, Twitter faces a much more aggressive acquisition game and billions more than Musk’s original offer.
No word on how Twitter plans to respond, but the possibility that Elon Musk owns Twitter is turning to reality.
What does that mean?
Musk has repeatedly complained about censorship on the platform and will likely seek to rewrite Twitter’s terms of service to achieve what he sees as a more balanced approach to both sides of a debate.
It could also seek to open Twitter’s code for the sake of transparency. This could lead to a flood of third-party services exploiting Twitter’s data feed to launch new plugins and, possibly, competing services.
It’s possible Musk will bring back banned users like former President Donald Trump, though he’s never explicitly stated that intention.
As for Twitter’s roughly 300 million members (only 206 million are believed to be monetizable monthly active members), a segment of them may be leaving the service in protest. Still, others might join because they think Musk’s Twitter will handle extreme voices (left and right) differently than previous leaders.
Musk has the backing of Twitter founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey, at least Musk did when he was just trying to have a say in the boardroom. Shortly after Musk first bought almost 10% of Twitter shares, he was asked to join the board. Dorsey welcomed the move and said Musk and current Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal would make a great team.
before Musk could even begin, he backed off and then came back with his first acquisition offer.
Meanwhile, Twitter has done what it can to encourage other deals, though none of the big ones have materialized. That leaves Musk and his huge sack of cash. Even if the board wants to say “no,” it’s an offer shareholders may find hard to refuse.
It might be time to get ready for Musk Twitter.