Elon Musk has sold more than 4 million Tesla shares worth around $4 billion, likely to help fund his $44 billion purchase of Twitter
Musk reported the sale in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday. The shares have been selling over the past few days, at prices ranging from $872.02 to $999.13.
The world’s richest man, who is the CEO of Tesla, tweeted that he does not foresee any further sales of shares in the company.
Most of the selling took place on Tuesday, when Tesla shares closed down 12%, a huge one-day drop.
Analysts said Tesla investors fear Musk will be distracted by Twitter and less engaged in running the electric car company. Twitter agreed to be acquired by Musk on Monday for $44 billion.
It emerged that Musk would borrow up to $25.5 billion from a slew of banks to pay for the Twitter takeover, but the stock sale could potentially fund some of that.
The deal to buy Twitter at $54.20 per share was announced earlier this week and is expected to close this year. But before the deal is done, shareholders will have to weigh in. So will regulators in the United States and countries where Twitter does business.
So far, however, few obstacles are expected, despite objections from some of Twitter’s own employees and users who are concerned about Musk’s stance on free speech and what it could mean for harassment and hate speech on the platform.
Shares of Tesla closed slightly lower on Thursday at $877.51. They are down 17% since the start of the year.