Elon Musk ‘terminates’ $44 billion Twitter-purchase deal, claims firm failed to give fake-account numbers


Billionaire Elon Musk is seeking to break his agreement to buy Twitter for $44 billion, claiming the Bay Area social-media giant refused to tell him how many of the accounts on its platform were fake. Musk had been trying to get that information since early May, after reaching an agreement in late April to buy the San Francisco company, according to a letter to Twitter’s board filed Friday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Musk had demanded Twitter prove spam bots made up fewer than 5% of its users. “Mr. Musk has been clear that he views Twitter’s non-responsiveness as a material breach of the Merger Agreement giving him the right to terminate the Merger Agreement if uncured,” said the letter from a law firm. Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The deal included a $1 billion break-up fee to be imposed on Musk if he pulled out. It was not clear whether he would pay the fee, whether Twitter would accept it, or whether his withdrawal from the agreement would lead to a court battle. Related Articles Technology | BART sued over ads targeting Elon Musk and his lab-monkey research Technology | Elon Musk defends right-wing author who deadnamed Elliot Page, insulted trans identity Technology | Man accused of buying 39 Teslas via $45 million scam with apparent false ties to Elon Musk Musk, CEO of electric car firm Tesla, sold some $8.5 billion in Tesla stock to fund the purchase, and pulled together $7 billion in promised backing from investors including Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison. Wedbush Securities analysts Dan Ives and John Katsingris predicted Friday that the broken deal would end up in court. “This is a disaster scenario for Twitter and its board as now the company will battle Musk in an elongated court battle to recoup the deal and/or the breakup fee of $1 billion at a minimum,” the analysts said in a note to investors. Check back on this developing story.