(CNN) — Twitter has agreed to be bought by Elon Musk in a deal valued at around $44 billion, the company reported Monday.
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The deal caps off a breakneck news cycle in which the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX became one of Twitter’s largest shareholders, was offered and declined a seat on its board of directors, and ultimately offered to buy the company, all in less than a month.
Questions about whether Musk could actually finance his acquisition of Twitter arose in the days after his public offering. Especially after he said in an interview on the day of his offer: “I’m not sure he can really acquire [Twitter]”.
Twitter stock price after effect of Elon Musk
Twitter board puts defense mechanism against Elon Musk 1:17
Twitter shares were trading noticeably below the offer price, in a possible sign of investor skepticism about the deal. However, on Monday morning, the stock was up nearly 5% on the reports, topping $51 a share.
If approved, the deal would put the world’s richest man in charge of one of the world’s most influential social media platforms. Musk has repeatedly emphasized in recent days that his goal is to bolster free speech on the platform. Also, work to “unlock” the “extraordinary potential” of Twitter.
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“I invested in Twitter because I believe in its potential to be the platform for freedom of expression around the world. And I believe that free speech is a social imperative for a functioning democracy,” Musk said in his offer letter to Twitter. “However, since making my investment, I now realize that the company will not prosper or meet this social imperative in its current form. Twitter must be transformed into a private company,” he added.
In the days after Musk’s offer, Twitter’s board of directors implemented a so-called “poison pill,” which would make it more difficult for the billionaire to acquire the company without its approval. There were also questions about whether the company would try to find another buyer.
Musk’s possible impact on Twitter 2:43
However, CFRA principal equity analyst Angelo Zino said on Monday that Twitter’s board taking Musk’s offer more seriously may be explained by “the board realizing that an alternative offer (… ) may be hard to come by, especially after the drop in asset prices of social media companies in recent weeks/months.”
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CNN’s Brian Stelter contributed to this report.
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