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Musk Won’t Own Twitter Until the Shareholders Get Paid

The volatile billionaire says he wants to complete the deal, but he could still change course.

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Months of legal barbs exchanged between Twitter Inc. and Elon Musk—who urgently wanted to own the company and then changed his mind—culminated this week in an apparent peace offering. The world’s richest man said in a letter to Twitter’s board Monday night that he would buy the social network after all. He plans to honor the original $44 billion price tag he agreed to in April, plus everything else in that contract.

Twitter shares jumped more than 20% on Tuesday, indicating investors expect a done deal. But Twitter stopped short of declaring victory or dropping the suit it filed to force Musk to complete the transaction, which is set to go to trial in less than two weeks. The judge in the suit said Wednesday that the trial is still on for Oct. 17 and that she hasn’t received a formal request to halt the case.