Shares of English soccer club Manchester United Plc briefly rose as much as 17% in premarket trading on Wednesday after Elon Musk jokingly tweeted, “Also, I’m buying Manchester United, you’re welcome.”
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Shares of English soccer club Manchester United briefly rose as much as 17% in premarket trading on Wednesday after Tesla CEO Elon Musk jokingly tweeted that he would buy the club.
“I also say Manchester United are welcome,” the billionaire wrote on Twitter. Hours later, Musk responded to a Twitter user who asked him if he was serious about buying the club and clarified that it was a joke.
“No, it’s a long-standing Twitter joke. I don’t buy any sports equipment,” he said tweetedbefore addition: “Although if there was any team it would be Man U. They were my favorite team as a kid.”
Shares of Manchester United, which trade under the acronym MANU on the New York Stock Exchange, were up 3.68% in premarket trading as of 4:30 a.m. ET, paring gains after an initial 17% jump after the tweet.
Based on the club’s latest stock market valuation, buying Manchester United would cost Musk about $2 billion. Manchester United declined to comment on the matter when contacted by CNBC.
Musk’s original tweet sparked widespread reaction and has garnered over 573,000 likes and been retweeted over 140,000 times at the time of writing. Manchester United fans reacted with surprise but hope as many criticized the club’s current owners, the American Glazer family.
This is linked to the club’s slow start to the current English Premier League season, with two defeats in two games, and the club being part of last year’s failed attempt to create the European Super League.
Even before Musk clarified that his offer to buy Manchester United was a joke, some fans remained skeptical, as the billionaire has a history of such pranks online.
In April of this year, he tweeted that he would buy Coca-Cola “to bring back the cocaine”, a tweet he referred to on Wednesday after clarifying that he would not buy Manchester United.
“And I’m not buying Coca-Cola to bring cocaine back, despite the extreme popularity of such a move,” Musk wrote.
The initial tweet about the Coca-Cola purchase came just days after Twitter’s board accepted Musk’s offer to buy the social media company for $44 billion.
Musk has since backed out of that deal just four months after agreeing to it. Twitter is taking the billionaire to court over the dispute.