Twitter must prove bot claims for $44bn deal to proceed – Musk

Doubts grow as to whether Musk can pull off his acquisition.
Elon Musk said he’ll proceed with his $44 billion takeover of Twitter Inc. only if the social media giant can substantiate claims about the proportion of bots on its service.

The billionaire tweeted “this deal cannot move forward” unless Twitter provides proof of claims that less than 5% of its users are bots, reiterating his own view that the ratio is far higher.

Musk shocked the market last week when he tweeted that his offer to buy Twitter was “temporarily on hold” until he receives more information about the proportion of fake accounts on the social media site. The Tesla Inc. chief executive officer linked his tweet to a May 2 Reuters report on Twitter’s most recent disclosure about the number of bots on the platform.

Roughly two hours later, Musk then claimed in another tweet that he was “still committed” to the deal.

Doubts have grown that Musk would be able to pull off his acquisition, and that he may consider dropping his bidding price for the micro-blogging site. The whole transaction has been chaotic with Musk going from a prolific user to revealing a stake of more than 9% in the company, then launching an unsolicited takeover offer — without detailed financing plans — within a matter of weeks.

© 2022 Bloomberg L.P.

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