LONDON: Elon Musk said on Friday his planned $44 billion takeover of Twitter was “on hold” pending details on spam and fake accounts on the social media platform, amid signs of internal unrest over the proposed acquisition Another twist in the situation.
In a tweet, the Tesla billionaire linked to a May 2 Reuters report, citing a Twitter financial filing that said the company’s “monetizable daily active users” in the first quarter Fake or spam accounts account for less than 5%.
“The Twitter deal is on hold pending details in favor of calculating that spam/fake accounts do represent less than 5% of users,” Musk said, skeptical that the number of inauthentic accounts is so low.
It’s unclear if the issue will be a deal breaker. Shares of Twitter and Tesla both moved sharply in opposite directions, with Twitter down 18% and Tesla, which Musk had proposed to help fund the Twitter deal, up 5%.
Investors have had to weigh the legal issues facing Musk and the potential distraction of the world’s most valuable automaker by acquiring Twitter.
Musk’s tweet came a day after the social media company fired two senior executives. Twitter said the company is suspending most hiring except for key roles and “cutting non-labor costs to keep us accountable and efficient.”
In a memo sent to employees and confirmed by Twitter, CEO Parag Agrawal said the company has yet to hit growth and revenue milestones after the company began “aggressively” investing to expand its user base and revenue.