Elon Musk’s deal to buy Twitter may go ahead, if details are confirmed on the social media platform’s actual user accounts.
Musk wants to know how many “spam bots” and how many are real people.
Billionaire CEO of Tesla He agreed to buy Twitter in April for $44 billion, but has been trying to back out of the deal since July, accusing Twitter of misleading his team about the true size of its user base and other issues he said amounted to fraud and breach of contract.
Twitter sued him last month to complete the acquisition and Musk responded.
The two sides are heading to a trial in October in a Delaware state court.
“If Twitter simply provides a method for sampling 100 accounts and how they are confirmed as real, the deal should continue on the original terms,” Musk wrote on Twitter early Saturday. “However, if their SEC filings are found to be materially false, you should not do so.”
Musk, who has over 100 million followers on Twitter, continued to challenge Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal to “Public discussion about Twitter bot ratio.”
Twitter declined to comment on Saturday. The company has repeatedly revealed to Securities and Exchange Commission Estimate that less than 5% of user accounts are fake or spam, with a disclaimer that it could be higher. Musk waived his right to further due diligence when he signed the merger agreement in April.
In the details reported about Musk’s counterclaim, Twitter is accused of intentionally “miscalculating” the number of spam accounts it hosts in order to modify user metrics “as part of its scheme to mislead investors about the company’s prospects.”
He also claims that Twitter’s reliance on the metric mDAU, or monetized daily active Twitter users, as a revenue basis, is itself misleading.
Twitter responded in a filing in Delaware Chancery Court, describing Musk’s reasoning as “a story, contrived in an attempt to escape a merger agreement that Musk no longer appeals to.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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