Twitter is reportedly on track to accept Elon Musk's offer to buy the social network for $54.20 per share, a deal that would value the company at about $43 billion. A deal could be announced as early as Monday, according to reports from Bloomberg and Reuters.
The two sides met Sunday to discuss Musk's proposal, The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday. Terms of the transaction were reportedly still being negotiated overnight into Monday morning. It's also possible the deal could fall apart at the last minute, reported Reuters.
Shares of Twitter jumped over 5% in premarket trading in the US on Monday, topping $51.
Earlier this month, Musk made an offer to buy the influential social media company, after rejecting a seat on Twitter's board. The entrepreneur, who runs Tesla, SpaceX and other companies, already owns more than 9% of Twitter.
Twitter had been widely expected to reject the offer, adopting a limited-duration shareholders rights plan, a tactic known as the "poison pill" defense that's used by companies to fend off takeover attempts like the one facing Twitter. Poison pills make it difficult for a potential buyer to acquire a majority of a company's shares by making more of them available.
Twitter reportedly warmed up to a potential deal after a filing last week with the Securities and Exchange Commission revealed Musk had secured $46.5 billion in funding to finance the bid, including backing from Morgan Stanley.
Twitter didn't respond to a request for comment.
Musk, who has 83 million followers, is an avid user of Twitter but also one of its loudest critics. He has publicly raised questions about Twitter's future, repeatedly polling his followers about changes that could be made at the company.
In a letter to Bret Taylor, chairman of Twitter's board of directors, Musk said he invested in Twitter because he believes "in its potential to be the platform for free speech." Musk wants to take the public company private to accomplish this goal. The First Amendment guarantee of freedom of speech applies to the government censoring speech but not social media companies, which have their own rules about what's not allowed on their platforms.
On Monday, Musk tweeted "I hope that even my worst critics remain on Twitter, because that is what free speech means."