Elon Musk said his $44 billion cash purchase with Twitter Inc is “temporarily on hold” while he waits for the social media giant to produce data on the percentage of fake accounts it has.
“Twitter deal on hold temporarily seeking details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts constitute fewer than 5% of users,” Musk said to his 92 million Twitter followers.
“To find out,” Musk wrote, “my team will do a random sampling of 100 followers” on the microblogging site, asking others to “see what they discover.”
“We can definitely crowdsource a good answer if we try to find out the bot/duplicate user percentage as a group.”
Musk responded to a follower who wondered why he hadn’t considered this before agreeing to buy Twitter by tweeting that he had “relied upon the accuracy of Twitter’s public filings.”
Musk has the right under the terms of his contract with Twitter to request information on the company’s activities after the transaction is signed.
The corporation found the remark to be derogatory and a breach of their contract terms.
“While I expect the deal to close,” Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal tweeted, “we need to be prepared for all possibilities.”
If Musk does not complete the acquisition, he is liable to pay Twitter a $1 billion breakup fee.
Musk has stated that if he purchases Twitter, he will “destroy the spambots or die trying,” blaming the company’s reliance on advertising for allowing spam bots to flourish.
Musk indicated that if he acquires Twitter, he will lift the restriction on former US President Donald Trump, showing his intention to reduce moderation.
In premarket trade, Twitter shares dropped more than 20%, but they recovered after Musk made a second tweet claiming he was still committed to the deal.
The stock dropped 9.6% to $40.71 in Friday trading, a significant discount from the $54.20 per share purchase price.
Twitter stocks have plummeted since Musk announced his acquisition of Twitter, owing to investor concerns about inflation and a probable economic downturn.
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