Twitter shares opened 25% up on Monday: here’s the catalyst

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Twitter Inc (NYSE: TWTR) shares opened nearly 25% up this morning after Elon Musk revealed a sizable stake in the social networking service.

Elon Musk takes 9.2% stake in Twitter

The cofounder and chief executive of Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) took a 9.2% passive stake in the microblogging platform, as per the SEC filing on Monday. On CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, LightShed Partners’ Rich Greenfield said:

I don’t know whether this is truly passive or not, but I do think it underscores for investors that Twitter could be acquired. Given the weakness in the stock, there’s an opportunity to own Twitter.

The big move up in Twitter shares, as per analysts at Bespoke Investment Group, is related to the expectation that Musk will help Twitter unleash its true potential. Both Twitter and Tesla are yet to make an official comment on the news.

How Dan Ives sees it

The filing comes a week after Musk criticized Twitter and said he’d consider launching his own, competing social media platform – a development that’s unlikely to happen after today’s news, as per Wedbush Securities’ Dan Ives.

It looks like Elon has his eyes laser set on Twitter and we’d expect this passive stake as just the start of broader conversations with the Twitter board/management that could ultimately lead to an active stake and a potential more aggressive ownership role of Twitter.

In February, Twitter reported weaker-than-expected results for its fiscal fourth quarter.

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