Elon Musk’s Proposal to Buy 100% of Twitter

 

Now that Musk is bidding for a full takeover of Twitter, the left and the likes of Max Boot are crying about the effect unfettered (or less fettered) speech has on democracy.

These same clowns didn’t care when social media blocked a true story about the Biden family’s global influence-peddling scheme during the 2020 election cycle.

I suspect Biden’s SEC will hold this up, or maybe it’s a ploy by Musk to drive up the price and sell the 9 percent he currently has.

One thing  about Twitter and the last four years: it showed the media for who they really are, especially the GOPe (e.g., Bill Kristol and the Weekly Standard gang).

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  1. Victor Tango Kilo Member
    Victor Tango Kilo
    @VtheK

    If he succeeds, the first thing he ought to do is shut down the bot farms Twitter uses to amplify the official narrative. 

     

    • #1
  2. genferei Member
    genferei
    @genferei

    How about these alternatives:

    1. Musk successfully buys it and is successful in transforming it into a free speech platform. Highly unlikely, but perhaps not so bad. 

    2. Musk successfully buys it but it collapses as it becomes anathema to left and right alike. Again, not so bad, unless you’re Elon’s banker. 

    3. Musk fails to buy as the price is bid up and quickly dumps his stock for a nice profit. Status quo retained – Elon’s banker happiest. 

    4. Musk fails to buy, but the process drags out, leaving first the wokeist, then the smartest, then anyone who can, of Twitter’s employees to leave. The stock drops, the platform fizzles. Elon loses money but the world is improved. ‘Journalists’ hardest hit. 

    • #2
  3. DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax)
    @DonG

    Twitter is a failed company.  They have first-mover advantage, but have failed to monitize that. They are barely profitable and revenue growth is flat/declining.  People under age 30 don’t really care about Twitter.   TikTok has users spending hour-after-hour staring at screen and Twitter doesn’t have that.   They have strong brand for age 30+ folks, but they need to change their product to avoid become MySpace.   There is an opportunity, but the window is closing.  The best chance is to replicate TikTok, then get TikTok banned from the USA.   There is no business model for a “free speech” platform.  Gab is free.  Any thoughts about politics are irrelevant as this is a business transaction.

    Twitter: quarterly net income 2021 | Statista

    Twitter Quarterly Revenue by Segment: Q1 2011 - Q2 2021 - Dazeinfo

    [edit note:  updated graphs for more recent data]

    • #3
  4. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    Twitter is a platform that has evolved to a certain purpose.  That purpose it to promote Left Wing ideology and agenda.  If Musk changes it from that purpose it will either die or be killed.

     

    • #4
  5. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    The absolute fury that greets this move is revealing (although predictable).  See my post The Rage of the Prince-Electors.

     

     

    • #5
  6. Richard Easton Coolidge
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    • #6
  7. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    I just posted this in the PIT. I’m glad that I scrolled down and found that Glenn has covered it.

    Elon Musk has thrown away the scabbard.

    Elon Musk Launches Hostile Takeover of Twitter

    • #7
  8. Richard Easton Coolidge
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Twitter is a failed company. They have first-mover advantage, but have failed to monitize that. They are barely profitable and revenue growth is flat/declining. People under age 30 don’t really care about Twitter. TikTok has users spending hour-after-hour staring at screen and Twitter doesn’t have that. They have strong brand for age 30+ folks, but they need to change their product to avoid become MySpace. There is an opportunity, but the window is closing. The best chance is to replicate TikTok, then get TikTok banned from the USA. There is no business model for a “free speech” platform. Gab is free. Any thoughts about politics are irrelevant as this is a business transaction.

    Twitter: quarterly net income 2021 | Statista

    Twitter Quarterly Revenue by Segment: Q1 2011 - Q2 2021 - Dazeinfo

    [edit note: updated graphs for more recent data]

    Twitter has been banning important people which drives business elsewhere. If  Musk wins and allows these people back, he could significantly improve profitability.

    • #8
  9. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    Whatever his actual goals are, I am 100% sure it has nothing to do with making money. Money has never been a thing that motivates him

    Musk started both Tesla and SpaceX for philanthropic reasons. He had a smattering of billions after the sale of Pay Pal and invested in electric car prototypes, fully expecting to lose money, but with the idea of destroying the prevailing idea that EV’s had to be clunky, unsexy golf carts. He started SpaceX hoping to inspire NASA to go to Mars and beyond.

    When both companies were on the verge of bankruptcy in 2008, he put the rest of his nest-egg into both companies, against financial advice telling him that he could put all his money into one with some chance of success but splitting his fortune between them would likely cause both to fail.

    He knuckled down and as we all know both companies are a spectacular success.

    Secondly, when you are already worth 250 billion, you don’t have to screw around trying to manipulate a stock price to get a few more billion while pissing off a lot of very influential people.

    • #9
  10. DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax)
    @DonG

    Looks like the deal is dead.  Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer. 

    • #10
  11. GlennAmurgis Coolidge
    GlennAmurgis
    @GlennAmurgis

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    No one loves free speech more than the Saudi’s – can’t wait for Max Boot to praise them 

    • #11
  12. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Franco (View Comment):

    He knuckled down and as we all know both companies are a spectacular success.

     

    Sounds like a financial adrenaline junkie. Risk is rewarding to him.

    • #12
  13. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    But what percentage constitutes enough controlling interest to decide virtually everything? 51%?

    I don’t know enough about this subject myself.

    • #13
  14. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    Stina (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    He knuckled down and as we all know both companies are a spectacular success.

     

    Sounds like a financial adrenaline junkie. Risk is rewarding to him.

    No. Not at all. There are many interviews and documentaries out there. They are very interesting and I encourage you to check them out. There’s a new one on Netflix running now about SpaceX. Dozens of interviews on You Tube and elsewhere. I’ve seen most of them. His story and the stories of his companies are amazing. Well worth your time.

    He’s quite extraordinary, and his results against all odds are amazing and inspiring. 

    He really doesn’t care about money. It’s quite ironic that the guy who doesn’t care about money becomes the richest man in the world. Says something to me anyway. 

    He really wants humans to become and interplanetary species.

    He will gladly risk money for his vision and results, but not for wealth. 

    • #14
  15. Headedwest Coolidge
    Headedwest
    @Headedwest

    Franco (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    But what percentage constitutes enough controlling interest to decide virtually everything? 51%?

    I don’t know enough about this subject myself.

    If you own it all, you can take it private; then you can run it as you wish.

    • #15
  16. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    Headedwest (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    But what percentage constitutes enough controlling interest to decide virtually everything? 51%?

    I don’t know enough about this subject myself.

    If you own it all, you can take it private; then you can run it as you wish.

    Okay, but having controlling number of shares (whatever that would be) should do the trick. Surely Musk isn’t expecting everyone to sell, right? That’s unrealistic.

    • #16
  17. Roberto Member
    Roberto
    @Roberto

    Franco (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    But what percentage constitutes enough controlling interest to decide virtually everything? 51%?

    I don’t know enough about this subject myself.

    It seems like the offer is a high stakes bid for all or nothing.

    Here is the letter Musk sent to Twitter’s chairman disclosed in the 13D filing.

    Bret Taylor

    Chairman of the Board,

    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.

    -Elon Musk 

    Interesting.

    • #17
  18. Headedwest Coolidge
    Headedwest
    @Headedwest

    Franco (View Comment):

    Headedwest (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Looks like the deal is dead. Saudi’s that own 5.2% have nixed the offer.

    But what percentage constitutes enough controlling interest to decide virtually everything? 51%?

    I don’t know enough about this subject myself.

    If you own it all, you can take it private; then you can run it as you wish.

    Okay, but having controlling number of shares (whatever that would be) should do the trick. Surely Musk isn’t expecting everyone to sell, right? That’s unrealistic.

    There is a world of difference between owning a company outright and owning a majority share in a public company.

    • #18
  19. Headedwest Coolidge
    Headedwest
    @Headedwest

    Here is a good concise description of how taking a company private can be useful:

    Going private can give struggling public companies an opportunity to restructure, make operational changes and turn things around with the possibility of going public again in the future once problems have been addressed. It can also free management from the scrutiny brought on by public or activist shareholders.

    In addition, private companies don’t have to deal with the costly and time-consuming regulatory, financial reporting, corporate governance and disclosure requirements public companies face. These responsibilities — including remaining in compliance with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) — can draw management’s attention away from growing the business as executives get caught up in all the details involved in adhering to myriad government regulations.

    Private companies also aren’t faced with the pressure of meeting quarterly earnings targets and expectations from investment analysts and “the Street.” These pressures sometimes force management to make short-term decisions that aren’t necessarily in the long-term best interests of the company, such as neglecting research and development and short-changing investment in capital expenditures.

    • #19
  20. Roberto Member
    Roberto
    @Roberto

    Franco (View Comment):
    Surely Musk isn’t expecting everyone to sell, right? That’s unrealistic.

    The value of those shares could very well collapse should the offer fail with Musk then liquidating his holdings.

    Which might be his goal, it’s amusing to speculate but everyone is truly just guessing at what his plan is here.

     

    • #20
  21. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    What happens if people decide just not to sell their stock?  Can they be forced to sell their stock?  Also why can’t the government just step in and say no and stop the deal?  

    • #21
  22. Franco Member
    Franco
    @Franco

    From the link provided by Headedwest:

    The going private process usually looks something like this: A private buyer (either internal or external) makes a bid to purchase the shares of a publicly held company. If the bid is accepted by the majority of voting shareholders, the company will be deregistered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and its securities will be delisted from the public exchange and no longer available for public trading.

    So, once a majority accepts, the company goes private –  even those who didn’t want to sell must take the offer. That would mean that buying all shares isn’t necessary. 

    From what I understand, the board must act in service to the shareholders, so if they don’t want to sell for political reasons, they are in a real dilemma. Right?

    • #22
  23. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    I don’t know how this kind of thing works, and I get the impression most people here don’t know either, given the amount of speculation.

    I do think that a Saudi holdout needn’t be a deal killer, if the board approves the takeover anyway.

    I also think that were Mr. Musk to own more than half the outstanding shares, he could probably have an enormous influence on corporate policy regarding censorship and free speech. And my impression is that that really is his motivation.

    Regardless of its profitability, Twitter is a big deal from a political standpoint. A Twitter that respected free speech would be a game changer in 2024. I was telling people years before the 2020 election that there was a real danger of a last-minute clampdown on social media, perhaps combined with a disinformation campaign, to favor the Democrats leading up to the election. That was an obvious move: get the desired outcome, and then let the critics complain as they may about whatever rules might have been violated. And I think that’s exactly what happened.

    With a Twitter that allowed unfettered communication, that would not be possible in 2024.

    • #23
  24. DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax)
    @DonG

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):

    What happens if people decide just not to sell their stock? Can they be forced to sell their stock? Also why can’t the government just step in and say no and stop the deal?

    Government can always nix a stock transaction.   Most of the shares are owned by institutions.  They are easy to please, since they just care about making money.  There are no sentimental holdings at Vanguard and BlackRock.  These top-10 hold about 40% of the shares.

     

    Top 10 Owners of Twitter Inc

    StockholderStakeShares
    ownedTotal value ($)Shares
    bought / soldTotal
    change
    The Vanguard Group, Inc. 8.39% 67,172,425 2,598,901,123 +377,367 +0.56%
    Morgan Stanley Investment Managem… 8.08% 64,722,431 2,504,110,855 -4,853,950 -6.98%
    BlackRock Fund Advisors 4.56% 36,536,143 1,413,583,373 +636,856 +1.77%
    SSgA Funds Management, Inc. 4.54% 36,363,324 1,406,897,006 +836,358 +2.35%
    Aristotle Capital Management LLC 2.51% 20,112,134 778,138,464 +583,355 +2.99%
    ARK Investment Management LLC 2.15% 17,245,755 667,238,261 +3,460,856 +25.11%
    Fidelity Management & Research Co… 2.14% 17,112,059 662,065,563 -2,346,573 -12.06%
    ClearBridge Investments LLC 2.09% 16,733,505 647,419,308 -476,088 -2.77%
    Geode Capital Management LLC 1.79% 14,314,021 553,809,472 +378,646 +2.72%
    Nikko Asset Management Co., Ltd. 1.56% 12,467,698 482,375,236 +1,731,554 +16.13%
    • #24
  25. DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) Coolidge
    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax)
    @DonG

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Twitter is a big deal from a political standpoint. A Twitter that respected free speech would be a game changer in 2024.

    Imagine if Twitter *enforced* a free speech standard and promoted “narrative” and “anti-narrative” content equally! 

    • #25
  26. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Twitter is a big deal from a political standpoint. A Twitter that respected free speech would be a game changer in 2024.

    Imagine if Twitter *enforced* a free speech standard and promoted “narrative” and “anti-narrative” content equally!

    I would be happy if they — and all social media — simply allowed all non-criminal speech.

    • #26
  27. DrewInWisconsin, Oik! Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik!
    @DrewInWisconsin

    The Biden Administration is already weaponizing the DOJ to try to take down Elon Musk. They cannot allow him to take control of their main avenue of messaging.

    • #27
  28. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Twitter is a big deal from a political standpoint. A Twitter that respected free speech would be a game changer in 2024.

    Imagine if Twitter *enforced* a free speech standard and promoted “narrative” and “anti-narrative” content equally!

    I would be happy if they — and all social media — simply allowed all non-criminal speech.

    I think we can be sure that Musk wouldn’t be given any leeway against lawsuits etc, Section 230 or otherwise.

    • #28
  29. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    DonG (CAGW is a Hoax) (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Twitter is a big deal from a political standpoint. A Twitter that respected free speech would be a game changer in 2024.

    Imagine if Twitter *enforced* a free speech standard and promoted “narrative” and “anti-narrative” content equally!

    I would be happy if they — and all social media — simply allowed all non-criminal speech.

    I think we can be sure that Musk wouldn’t be given any leeway against lawsuits etc, Section 230 or otherwise.

    IF I was Musk I would beef up my security quite a bit.  It is not out of the the realm of possibility for a little bit of radiation poisoning to happen.  He is around all that high tech battery / space stuff after all and accidents do happen.

    • #29
  30. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    Here’s a handy Guide to Acquiring a US Public Company.

    Saudis and their 5.2% cannot nix the deal, if there are enough other shares voted in favor.

    A lot of institutional owners would probably like to vote against, for reasons of political correctness, but if the offer is sufficiently high and they do vote against, they will likely be opening themselves up to fiduciary-responsibility lawsuits.

    • #30
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