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Elon Musk says he can get $46.5bn to buy Twitter

This speech isn't free

The world's richest man Elon Musk has said how he can get his hands on $46.5 billion to take over Twitter, explaining that more than half of that figure will come from banks via debt financing. 

Musk (net worth: $270 billion) said he'll provide $21 billion himself while the remaining $25.5 billion will be financed by Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, Barclays, and others. This was disclosed in a filing to the SEC, published Thursday, in which he said Twitter's board has not responded to his earlier offer of $54.20 a share.

The various types of loans described in his submission are expected to be partly covered by Musk's shares in his electric car biz Tesla. The tech tycoon also leads SpaceX, and could secure the funding needed on his part if he sold some of his stake.

His latest missive to the SEC did not say where exactly his $21 billion will come from, just that he is still exploring an all-cash takeover of Twitter. The micro-blogging biz said it's seen the latest paperwork revealing Musk's sources of financing.

"We are in receipt of the updated, non-binding proposal from Elon Musk, which provides additional information regarding the original proposal and new information on potential financing," a Twitter spokesperson told The Register in a statement.

"As previously announced and communicated to Mr Musk directly, the board is committed to conducting a careful, comprehensive and deliberate review to determine the course of action that it believes is in the best interest of the company and all Twitter stockholders."

Musk's attempt to own Twitter emerged when it was revealed earlier this month he had purchased a 9.2 percent stake in the website. Eyebrows were raised when he declined an invitation to join its board despite becoming one of Twitter's biggest shareholders, without explaining why. Three days later, Musk went for the jugular, offering to buy the website outright for $54.20 per share. (Get it? 420 is a cannabis joke.)

Board members quickly moved to derail Musk's ambitions by deploying a poison pill, which makes a hostile takeover a little more tricky. Musk, however, isn't giving up. He wants to buy up all of Twitter's shares and make it a privately-owned business, and now he's shed some light on where the money for that will come from.

With over 80 million followers on Twitter, Musk is a polarizing figure. His tweets can move markets, especially when he promotes things like cryptocurrencies and traded companies like GameStop. Sometimes his tweets about his own companies have landed himself in hot water with the SEC. Musk, a self-described "free-speech absolutist," has claimed Twitter, through its content moderation, is limiting free speech.

Twitter's stock rose a tiny bit upon news Musk has lined up $46.5 billion to acquire the company, and it's up less than a percentage point at time of publication. ®

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