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Twitter set to accept Musk's $43bn offer — sources

Elon Musk's Twitter account is seen on a smartphone in front of the Twitter logo. File Photo
Elon Musk's Twitter account is seen on a smartphone in front of the Twitter logo. File Photo
Image: Dado Ruvic/Illustration/Reuters

Twitter is poised to agree a sale to Elon Musk for about $43bn (roughly R673bn) in cash, the price the CEO of Tesla has called his "best and final" offer for the social media company, people familiar with the matter said.

Twitter may announce the $54.20 per share (roughly R848) deal later on Monday after its board has met to recommend the transaction to Twitter shareholders, the sources said. It is possible that the deal collapses at the last minute, the sources added.

Musk, the world's richest person according to a tally by Forbes, is negotiating to buy Twitter in a personal capacity and Tesla is not involved in the deal.

Twitter has not been able to secure so far a "go-shop" provision under its agreement with Musk that would allow it to solicit other bids once the deal is signed, the sources said. Twitter would be allowed to accept an offer from another party by paying Musk a break-up fee, the sources added.

The sources requested anonymity because the matter is confidential. Twitter and Musk did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Twitter shares were up 4.5% in pre-market trading in New York on Monday at $51.15 (roughly R800).

Musk has said Twitter needs to be taken private to grow and become a genuine platform for free speech.

The deal would come four days after Musk unveiled a financing package to back the acquisition. This led Twitter's board to take the deal more seriously and many shareholders to ask the company not to let the opportunity for a deal slip away, Reuters reported on Sunday.

The sale would represent an admission by Twitter that its new CEO Parag Agrawal, who took the helm in November, is not making enough traction in making the company more profitable, despite being on track to meet ambitious financial goals the company set for 2023. Twitter's shares were trading higher than Musk's offer price as recently as November.

Musk's negotiating tactics — making one offer and sticking with it — resembles how another billionaire, Warren Buffett, negotiates acquisitions. Musk did not provide any financing details when he first disclosed his offer for Twitter, making the market skeptical about its prospects.

Reuters

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