The world''s richest man who has a history of battling with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which regulates the stock market, is now asking the agency to investigate Twitter(TWTR) - Get Twitter, Inc. Reportover fake accounts on the platform.
Musk has questioned Twitter''s board of directors and management since he proposed to acquire the social media company for $44 billion on April 14. On May 17, he said that he wants Twitter to verify its data about the number of spam accounts or that the acquisition agreement is no longer on the table.
"My offer was based on Twitter''s SEC filings being accurate. Yesterday, Twitter''s CEO publicly refused to demonstrate proof of 5%. This arrangement cannot progress until he does," Musk said.
''''Hello @SECGov Anyone Home?''''
Musk has launched a survey on Twitter whose objective is to claim that >95 percent of daily active users are real, unique individuals. Does anyone know about that?
Musk didn''t hesitate when a user commented that the Securities and Exchange Commission should investigate.
This genre of narrative might be a project from Tesla''s CEO (TSLA) to renegotiate the terms of the transaction and seek a lower price or back out of the transaction completely.
Musk''s most recent ploy is to focus on how many Twitter accounts are spam or bot ones.
Following a ten-week decline, Twitter''s stock jumped on Tuesday.
Musk defended Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal on Monday to defend his claim that the actual number of bots was "well under 5%" in the last four quarters, and claimed that such figures were "fundamental to Twitter''s financial health."
A Cheaper Price?
Twitter has stated that it is still committed to the proposed acquisition for $54.20 per share, following a SEC filing early Tuesday.
Musk has been working to lower the deal price and has already stated that a cheaper acquisition price isn''t out of question."
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During a summit for entrepreneurs Chamath Palihapitiya, Jason Calacanis, David Sacks, and David Friedberg, the billionaire who runs SpaceX made the statement.
Twitter informed the SEC earlier in May that the total of fake accounts, which are also called bots, was below 5% of its 229 million month active users. Musk previously stated there is "some possibility" that the number of fake and bot accounts "might exceed 90% of daily active users," but he provided no information or allegations for his claim.
Analysts at Hindenburg Research, who is well-known for being short-sellers, warned last week that the deal might be''repriced'' if Musk threatens to leave the deal.
Hindenburg said Musk may pay the $1 billion break-up charge due to a better outcome than renegotiating, mentioning his "significant leverage" over the micro-blogging website, and that another bidder has not been made.
Musk''''s Previous Battles With SEC
Musk has been sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission in the past by declaring that he may take Tesla private and then paid a $20 million fine. In 2018, he signed an agreement.
In April, a New Yorkfederal judge told the billionaire that he would not end the agreement that required him to have his social media posts approved by a company attorney if they included additional information about Tesla.
Musk pushed back and said that his previous agreement hindered his ability to have freedom of speech. He said the Securities and Exchange Commission used the agreement to create endless, voiding investigations of his public statements.
Judge Lewis J. Liman of the Southern District of New York wrote in a judgment of his claims.
In 2018, Musk exchanged with the Securities and Exchange Commission, alleging, that he had "secured" financing for Tesla private. After discovering that he had only started discussions with investors.
With his shocking tweets, he has been accused of violating the terms of his agreement.
Financing for Deal Could be Problem
Musk, who does not have a substantial amount of liquid assets, has sought to obtain bank loans, but also a $12.5 billion margin loan secured by Tesla shares to finance his offer for Twitter.
A$7.1 billion in preferred-equity commitments from a group of investors including Oracle (ORCL) - Get Oracle Corporation Report founder Larry Ellison, Sequoia Capital, Qatar Holding, and Saudi Prince Al Waleed bin Talal Al Saud, a current Twitter shareholder, allowed him to lower his margin loan.