Elon Musk officially secured an agreement to purchase Twitter Monday (April 25). News that a deal was in the final stages of discussion broke late Sunday, following weeks of public back-and-forth between the social media company and the world’s richest person.
“Twitter, Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by an entity wholly owned by Elon Musk, for $54.20 per share in cash in a transaction valued at approximately $44 billion,” read a press release announcing the news. “Upon completion of the transaction, Twitter will become a privately held company.”
Twitter users reacted to the impending sale with a mix of excitement and dread. Former Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos took a moment to call for a feature that would allow people to erase their direct conversations in bulk. “Hey, Twitter Product Management: This would be a great week to add a ‘Delete all DMs’ button,” he wrote prior to the close of the sale. Twitter direct messages are not end-to-end encrypted, which means that Twitter staff, or a tech savvy person could have the technological ability to read them.
“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” Musk said in a statement Monday. “Twitter has tremendous potential — I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it.”
The board unanimously authorized the deal, which is scheduled to finalize this year. Musk revealed last week that he had secured $46.5 billion in funding to buy Twitter, a revelation that prompted the board to seriously evaluate the transaction. The board met Sunday to discuss Musk’s bid.