Elon Musk touted Twitter’s ‘incredible potential’ after spending millions on legal fees to avoid buying it

Elon Musk.Andrew Kelly/Reuters

  • Elon Musk said he was “excited about the situation on Twitter” during Tesla’s earnings call.

  • Musk spent months and millions of dollars trying to back out of his deal to buy Twitter before agreeing to go through with the purchase.

  • Musk said the company had “incredible potential” but “has been languishing for a long time.”

Tesla CEO Elon Musk spent a fortune and several months trying to pull out of his deal to buy Twitter. Now he is optimistic about the purchase.

“I’m excited about the situation on Twitter because I obviously know their product very well,” Musk said during Tesla’s earnings call on Wednesday. “I think it’s an asset that’s been languishing for a long time but has incredible potential.”

Musk, the world’s richest person, offered to take the social network private in April at a $44 billion valuation. Twitter resisted before accepting the offer and urging shareholders to approve the deal.

Then, in July, Musk announced he was canceling the deal, primarily over a dispute over the number of spam and fake accounts on the Twitter platform. Twitter sued to force Musk to follow.

After several tumultuous months — and personal legal fees estimated at $100 million — Musk again offered to buy Twitter for its original asking price earlier this month. The deal is expected to be completed by October 28. After extensively criticizing Twitter and its executives both in court filings and on the platform itself, Musk did an about-face.

“While obviously I and other investors are clearly paying too much for Twitter right now, Twitter’s long-term potential is, in my view, an order of magnitude greater than its current value,” said Musk on Wednesday.

Musk and a group of investors will pay $54.20 per share for Twitter. Shares closed Wednesday at $51.83; they were trading below $43 in early October before Musk said he would complete the deal.

The CEO of Tesla recently tweeted that its acquisition will be an “accelerator for the creation of X, the universal application”.

Musk will add the social media network to a plate full of other companies: Tesla, SpaceX, Neuralink and The Boring Company.

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