Elon Musk holds 9.2% stake in Twitter; which leads to soaring shares of 28% in pre-market trading

Tesla Inc CEO, Elon Musk holds a 9.2% stake in the micro-blogging site Twitter Inc, according to a regulatory filing on Monday. Twitter shares rose about 28% in pre-market trading after a 13G filing revealed Elon Musk has taken a 9.2% passive stake in the social media company.

Twitter shares were last up 28.49% in at $50.51 in pre-market trading following the news. Based on Friday’s market close, the stake is worth about $2.89 billion. The world’s richest man bought nearly 73.5 million shares, a document filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission shows.

Musk, a prolific user of Twitter himself, has been critical of the social media platform and its policies of late. He has said the company is undermining democracy by failing to adhere to free speech principles.

Recently, Musk had said in tweets that he is giving serious thought to creating a social media platform because Twitter is “failing to adhere to free speech principle.” “Given that Twitter serves as the de facto public town square, failing to adhere to free speech principles fundamentally undermines democracy,” Musk tweeted.

He said in an earlier tweet on March 25 that “free speech is essential to a functioning democracy,” and he questioned if Twitter “rigorously adheres to this principle.” The announcement will be yet another major test for new Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal, who replaced
Jack Dorsey after he unexpectedly resigned in November.

Agrawal vowed to increase accountability, make decisions faster and to improve product execution. The company set ambitious goals for growth including increasing annual revenue to $7.5 billion and getting to 315 million daily users by the end of 2023.