Elon Musk offers to buy Twitter for $43.4 billion

Elon Musk on his phone.
(Image credit: Bloomberg via Getty)

Tesla CEO and billionaire Elon Musk recently purchased 9.2% of Twitter stock, spiking its valuation by 27% in the following days and making him the largest individual shareholder in the social media company. Shortly after the announcement of Musk's investment in Twitter, CEO Parag Agrawal announced that he was also being added to the company's board of directors—before u-turning after a week of odd tweets from Musk.

Now, Musk has announced his intention to buy the company outright: saying he would pay $54.20 a share for Twitter (thanks, BBC). Musk added that if the offer was not accepted "I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder."

Musk has described himself as "a free speech absolutist" in the past, and in a filing to the US financial regulator says: "I invested in Twitter as I believe in its potential to be the platform for free speech around the globe, and I believe free speech is a societal imperative for a functioning democracy.

"However, since making my investment 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.

"As a result, I am offering to buy 100% of Twitter for $54.20 per share in cash, a 54% premium over the day before I began investing in Twitter and a 38% premium over the day before my investment was publicly announced. My offer is my best and final offer and if it is not accepted, I would need to reconsider my position as a shareholder.

"Twitter has extraordinary potential.  I will unlock it."

The deal would value the social media company at $43.4 billion.

Well, this one is clearly going to run and run. It seems like Twitter staff may not be too happy anyway, so how this is going to shake out is anyone's guess.

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."