Tech billionaire Elon Musk is reportedly willing to invest between $10 billion and $15 billion of his own cash to take the micro-blogging site Twitter private, media reports say.
Musk, who disclosed ownership in Twitter in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) earlier this month, has a 9.1 per cent ownership stake in the platform, which is worth $3.4 billion currently.
Musk may also be willing to borrow against his current stake if necessary, a move that could possibly raise several billion additional dollars, citing sources, the New York Post reported on Tuesday.
“The co-investors will combined have more equity than Musk but he will be the biggest single holder,” one of the sources was quoted as saying.
Nevertheless, it is mainly outside financing that will carry the bid for Musk, who has tapped Morgan Stanley to raise another $10 billion in debt against Twitter in the manner of a traditional leveraged buyout, the sources said.
As first reported by The Post on Friday, however, the bulk of the money — about $20 billion, according to sources — will come from co-investors who will finance a hostile tender offer directly to Twitter shareholders, sources said.
Musk hinted at the hostile approach in a cryptic tweet over the weekend that quoted Elvis Presley’s 1956 hit “Love Me Tender”.
Musk is planning to launch the tender offer for Twitter in 10 days or so, sources said. However, insiders say Musk appears to be having more trouble than expected in finding backers.
Recently, Musk announced that he had made an offer to buy Twitter. The billionaire is willing to pay $54.20 per share to buy 100 per cent of the company.
The all-cash offer will value the social network company at about $43 billion.
He also acknowledged he was “not sure” if he would actually be able to buy Twitter, adding that there is a Plan B if his initial offer is rejected.
Meanwhile, Twitter has announced that its Board of Directors has unanimously adopted a limited duration shareholder rights plan following an unsolicited, non-binding proposal to acquire Twitter by Musk.