Twitter Inc share suspended from trading ahead of deal
Twitter Inc shares will be suspended from trading on Friday, the New York Stock Exchange’s website showed, as billionaire Elon Musk faces a court-ordered October 28 deadline to close his $44 billion deal to buy the social media company.
Musk, the world’s richest person, visited Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco on Wednesday and hinted he was the company’s top boss after updating his profile bio to “Chief Twit”.
Reuters reported on Tuesday that equity investors, including Sequoia Capital, Binance, Qatar Investment Authority and others, had received the requisite paperwork for the financing commitment from Musk’s lawyers.
The deal’s completion would mark an end to a lawsuit by Twitter, which, along with investors, now expects the deal to be completed on its original terms of $54.20 per share.
Twitter’s shares were up about 1 per cent at $53.94 in early trading on Thursday.
The stock has surged nearly 65 per cent from a four-month low hit in July.
‘To help humanity’
Elon Musk is telling Twitter advertisers he is buying the platform to “help humanity” and doesn’t want it to become a “free-for-all hellscape” where anything can be said with no consequences.
The message to advertisers posted Thursday on Twitter came a day before Musk’s deadline for closing his $44 billion deal to buy the social-media company and take it private.
“The reason I acquired Twitter is because it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence,” Musk wrote, in an unusually-long message for the billionaire Tesla CEO who typically projects his thoughts in one-line tweets.
He continued: “There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society.”
The message reflects concerns among advertisers — Twitter’s chief source of revenue — that Musk’s plans to promote free speech by cutting back on moderating content will open the floodgates to more online toxicity and drive away users.
Musk told advertisers Thursday he wants Twitter to be “the most respected advertising platform in the world.”He said it should be “warm and welcoming to all” and enable users to choose the experience they want to have.
“I didn’t do it to make money,” he said of the pending acquisition. “I did it to try to help humanity, whom I love. And I do so with humility, recognising that failure in pursuing this goal, despite our best efforts, is a very real possibility.”
Friday’s deadline to close the deal was ordered by the Delaware Chancery Court in early October. It is the latest step in an epic battle during which Musk signed an Aprildeal to acquire Twitter, then tried to back out of it, leading Twitter to sue the Tesla CEO to force him to conclude the deal.