After a few days of relative quiet on the docket, Elon Musk has filed a motion to stay legal action in Twitter v. Musk et al., saying the circumstances have changed and his team now expects his $44B buyout of Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) to close Oct. 28 or earlier.
That action isn't likely to go far, though, as it only comes from Musk's team and lacks a response from Twitter - which would suggest the two sides aren't much closer to settling their issues than they were yesterday. It's a motion to stay, though, and will compel some court action.
Meanwhile, the two sides are racing to complete an agreement on the litigation by Monday, the WSJ says it's heard from a source.
Multiple media reports suggest the issues in contention now are the debt financing conditions to the $44B take-private deal. Banks including Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Barclays are set to provide some $13B in debt for the deal.
Musk's team is accusing Twitter of bogging down process, the NYT notes: “Twitter will not take yes for an answer. Astonishingly, they have insisted on proceeding with this litigation, recklessly putting the deal at risk and gambling with their stockholders’ interests,” Musk's attorneys said in their filing. “Proceeding toward trial is not only an enormous waste of party and judicial resources, it will undermine the ability of the parties to close the transaction.”
Updated 4:54 p.m.: Twitter (TWTR) responds to Musk's motion with its own filing. "Twitter opposes Defendants' motion," the company's attorneys say. "The obstacle to terminating this litigation is not, as Defendants say, that Twitter is unwilling to take yes for an answer. The obstacle is that Defendants still refuse to accept their contractual obligations.
"For months, Defendants have pursued increasingly implausible claims and over and over sought to delay trial on the merits to enforce the Merger Agreement. Discovery has shown each and every one of those claim to be utterly without merit," Twitter's attorneys said.
"Defendants' proposal is an invitation to further mischief and delay," they continue. They also reminded the court that the deal was supposed to be closed Sept. 15, and that at a minimum, Musk should be arranging to close on Monday, Oct. 10.
Musk and his companies "can and should close next week," Twitter's team says. "Until they do, this action is not moot and should be brought to trial."
After a relatively steady day, Twitter sank into the last half hour of trading to finish down 3.7% to $49.39, now a 9% discount to Musk's committed deal price of $54.20 per share.