Image Source: Yahoo News
Elon Musk prompted takeover speculation when he declared a stake in Twitter last month, and the price has since fallen to new lows.
On Monday, shares were changing hands at $38.31, down 6%. That’s down from $39.31 on April 1, the last trading day before he revealed his 9 percent interest.
Twitter’s latest drop comes as Wall Street becomes increasingly pessimistic that Musk’s purchase will be completed.
He claimed on Friday that the plan to buy Twitter was “on hold” due to concerns about phony accounts, or bots, on the platform. Although some analysts believe Musk is using the bot issue as a scapegoat to quit the agreement in exchange for a breakup fee, Musk has subsequently restated his commitment to reaching a deal.
He cast additional doubt on the pact after tweeting on Saturday that Twitter’s lawyers alleged he breached a nondisclosure agreement by revealing the platform’s bot-check sample size was 100.
Musk, the billionaire CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, raised further alarm as he continued to tweet over the weekend about problems with Twitter’s algorithm and other “potential bugs in the code.”
On Thursday, Twitter announced it was freezing hiring, rescinding offers and cutting costs. Two executives also left the company, including head of consumer product Kayvon Beykpour, who said CEO Parag Agrawal asked him to leave.
Agrawal said Friday that he still expects the sale to Musk to go through, but that he’s prepared to continue “leading and operating Twitter” in case it doesn’t.
In a series of tweets on Monday, Agrawal outlined how Twitter combats spam and determines what percentage of accounts are fake on the platform, noting that the company can’t publicly disclose specific details of the process because it relies in part on private user information.
“We shared an overview of the estimation process with Elon a week ago and look forward to continuing the conversation with him, and all of you,” Agrawal wrote.
Musk replied to Agrawal’s tweet, saying: “So how do advertisers know what they’re getting for their money? This is fundamental to the financial health of Twitter.”
He replied to another of Agrawal’s tweets with a smiling poop emoji.
With the continued slide in the stock, Twitter is now valued at a little over $29 billion, or roughly $15 billion below Musk’s agreed upon purchase price.