Before deciding to proceed with his $44 billion purchase of Twitter, Elon Musk reportedly tried to negotiate a 30% discount, according to New York Times.

The Tesla CEO attempted to renegotiate the terms of the social media platform arrangement for months before renewing his offer earlier this week.

Also read: Free speech absolutist Musk welcomes Kanye on Twitter after Instagram restricts rapper’s account

According to Musk, the company was secretive about the volume of bots and spam accounts on Twitter.

But the billionaire sent a letter to the Twitter board indicating his intention to finalise the acquisition as a two-day deposition was scheduled before a trial in Delaware that would begin on October 17.

However, three people with knowledge of the situation told NYT that in the weeks prior, Musk tried to convince Twitter to accept a plan that would have valued the firm at about $31 billion.

Also read: Elon Musk calls Ukraine Starlink outage claims affecting Russia pushback ‘bad reporting’

Twitter rejected the offer, according to the newspaper’s sources, but conversations had centred on a discount of about 10% that would have required Musk to pay $39.6 billion.

In April, Musk committed to purchasing the business for $54.20 a share, but by July, he had made it clear that he had changed his mind, citing the spam account issues.

Then Twitter filed a lawsuit against him to compel the transaction.

Also read: Elon Musk announces X the everything app: What is it

Musk stated that he would pay the whole amount in a letter to Twitter on Monday, but only if the money was available.

He risks having to pay the company a rumoured $1 billion breakup fee if he can’t get that from the banks.

After receiving the letter, Twitter released a statement in which it stated that “the intention of the company is to close the transaction at $54.20 per share.”

Also read: Twitter denies refusing Elon Musk’s renewed bid

According to reports, Musk and Twitter have since been negotiating to close the deal, but a judge in their lawsuit stated neither party has asked for the case to be stopped, so it will continue as scheduled.