Elon Musk Puts Twitter Deal Temporarily On Hold Over Fake Accounts
"A circus show"
Elon Musk has pressed pause on his $US44-billion ($A64 billion) Twitter deal, over spam and fake accounts on the social media platform.
The billionaire said he was waiting for information "supporting [the] calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users".
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Shortly after tweeting the immediate hold on his takeover, Twitter's share price plunging 10 per cent. However, after Mr Musk tweeted that he is “still committed” to the deal, Twitter’s shares recouped some of their losses.
Earlier this month, Twitter estimated that false or spam accounts represented less than 5 per cent of its revenue generating activity during the first quarter, while 229 million users were served advertising.
“Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5 per cent of users,” Musk tweeted on Friday.
Until the deal with Musk is finalised, the social media giant said they faced a number of risks including advertisers pulling out from Twitter amid “potential uncertainty regarding future plans and strategy.”
The move has seen tech analysts suggest the world’s richest man could be looking to renegotiate the price or even walk away.
Wedbush Securities' tech analyst, Dan Ives said Musk's comments could be interpreted as the billionaire's way of getting out of the deal.
"The nature of Musk creating so much uncertainty in a tweet (and not a filing) is very troubling to us... and now sends this whole deal into a circus show with many questions and no concrete answers as to the path of this deal going forward," he wrote in a note.
Musk has stated that one of his priorities would be removing “spam bots” from the platform.
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