Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla Inc, sold $4 billion worth of the electric vehicle maker’s stock on Thursday, according to US securities filings, presumably to help fund his planned acquisition of Twitter Inc.
“There are no additional TSLA sales planned after today,” Musk declared in a tweet. According to the documents, he sold 4.4 million shares on Tuesday and Wednesday, representing 2.6 percent of his holding in the firm.
— Whole Mars Catalog (@WholeMarsBlog) April 29, 2022
The sale comes after Musk said on Monday that he had agreed to acquire Twitter for $44 billion in cash, a deal that will give the world’s richest person control of the social media network used by millions of people and world leaders. According to Forbes, Musk’s net worth is $268 billion.
Musk stated that he will contribute a $21 billion equity investment as part of the purchase.
It’s unclear how he’ll pay for the $17 billion in stock financing that remains. Musk owns a 43.61 percent ownership in SpaceX, a $100 billion rocket firm that isn’t publicly traded.
Musk has been seeking for partners to help him cut his ownership stake in the deal, according to a source familiar with the situation.
This is his first Tesla stock transaction since he sold $16.4 billion worth of shares in November and December after polling Twitter followers about selling 10% of his ownership in the electric vehicle manufacturer.
Musk said on Twitter that he will owe more than $11 billion in taxes in 2021 as a result of exercising stock options that are supposed to expire this year.
Some traders have been concerned this week that Musk may not have enough cash on hand to cover his $21 billion cash commitment and may pull out of the agreement, putting downward pressure on Twitter shares.
Since Musk announced his over 9% interest in Twitter on April 4, Tesla shares have dropped over 20%. Investors are concerned that Musk may be forced to sell Tesla stock.
Musk reportedly took out a $12.5 billion margin debt connected to his Tesla equity as part of the Twitter transaction. He’d previously taken out a loan against around half of his Tesla stock.