Elon Musk might walk out of Twitter deal over lack of user data transparency: Report
San Francisco: Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk on Monday stated that if Twitter fails to give data on spam and fake accounts, he may walk out of his $44 billion acquisition agreement.
In a fresh SEC filing, Twitter shared a letter it received from Musk’s legal team indicating displeasure with the company’s offered information regarding the level of “spam and fake accounts” on its service, reports TechCrunch.
As per the letter, Musk considers Twitter’s “latest offer to simply provide additional details regarding the company’s own testing methodologies, whether through written materials or verbal explanations, (as) tantamount to refusing (his) data requests,” requests that Musk said will help “facilitate his evaluation of spam and fake accounts on the company’s platform”.
The letter said that more data (and not just an explanation of how the existing data was gathered) on Twitter’s non-human users — both natural and spam — is important for helping close the transaction from a financing perspective.
“As Twitter’s prospective owner, Musk is clearly entitled to the requested data to enable him to prepare for transitioning Twitter’s business to his ownership and to facilitate his transaction financing,” the letter reads.
At the end of the short correspondence, Musk’s legal team threatened to kill the deal.
“Based on Twitter’s behaviour to date, and the company’s latest correspondence, in particular, Musk believes the company is actively resisting and thwarting his information rights (and the company’s corresponding obligations) under the merger agreement,” the letter mentioned.
“This is a clear material breach of Twitter’s obligations under the merger agreement and Mr Musk reserves all rights resulting therefrom, including his right not to consummate the transaction and his right to terminate the merger agreement,” it added.
Musk has been vocal about this concern since his deal to buy the social media platform was finalised earlier this year.
Recently, he had hinted to pay less for Twitter takeover, as he sparred with CEO Parag Agrawal over the actual number of bots or spammy accounts on the platform. At a conference in Miami, Musk said that Twitter could have at least four times more fake accounts than what has been revealed in its filing.