Tesla boss and richest man on the planet, Elon Musk, said Friday he was suspending the takeover of Twitter pending details on the proportion of fake accounts on the social network.
The action of the group, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, plunged about 20% after this announcement in electronic trading before the opening of Wall Street.
“Twitter acquisition is temporarily on hold pending details that spam and fake accounts account for well under 5% of users”Mr. Musk wrote on the platform, where he has nearly 93 million subscribers.
Contacted by AFP, Twitter did not react immediately.
The board of directors of the social network with tweets accepted at the end of April a takeover offer of 44 billion dollars formulated by the whimsical leader of South African origin.
Mr. Musk promised to rid Twitter of spam, authenticate users and increase transparency without specifying how he intended to implement this project.
The company indicated at the beginning of May, during the presentation of its quarterly results, to have an average of 229 million daily users said to be monetizable, that is to say exposed to advertising.
She had estimated on this occasion that less than 5% of them were spam or fake accounts.
Mr Musk has also said he wants to make the platform a bastion of free speech and said he is ready to reinstate former US President Donald Trump, whose account was permanently suspended after the attack on the Capitol in January. 2021.
Since the takeover bid by the boss of Tesla and SpaceX, Twitter’s stock market value has shrunk by billions of dollars.
The title traded Friday at just over $36, well below the purchase price of $54.20 per share proposed by the billionaire.