Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, responded to Twitter’s board’s threat to sue him for ending the $44 billion takeover bid. He said that the lawsuit was an effort to have him agree to purchase Twitter in court.
In a tweet with an image, Musk argued that the Twitter board had withheld information about the number of Twitter bots, saying that they would now be required to reveal the same information in court.
The billionaire also made a suggestion that there was skepticism about his capacity to raise the cash to acquire Twitter.
n the Twitter post with different images of him laughing, Musk said: “They said I couldn’t buy Twitter, then they wouldn’t disclose bot info. Now, they want to force me to buy Twitter in court. Now they have to disclose bot info in court.”
This came as Musk’s first open reaction since his lawyer filed for the termination of the deal on Friday and the subsequent threat of legal action by the board of Twitter.
In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Elon Musk’s lawyer Mike Ringler, cited many reasons for his decision to quit, noting that “Twitter has not complied with its contractual obligations.”
Ringler claimed that Twitter did not provide Musk with the relevant business information he requested, as Ringler said the contract would require. Musk has previously said he wanted to assess Twitter’s claims that about 5% of its monetizable daily active users (mDAUs) are spam accounts.
“Twitter has failed or refused to provide this information,” Ringler claimed. “Sometimes Twitter has ignored Mr. Musk’s requests, sometimes it has rejected them for reasons that appear to be unjustified, and sometimes it has claimed to comply while giving Mr. Musk incomplete or unusable information.”
Ringler also charged in the letter that Twitter breached the merger agreement because it allegedly contains “materially inaccurate representations.” This accusation is based on Musk’s own preliminary review of spam accounts on Twitter’s platform. Twitter has said it’s not possible to calculate spam accounts from solely public information and that a team of experts conducts a review to reach the 5% figure.
“While this analysis remains ongoing, all indications suggest that several of Twitter’s public disclosures regarding its mDAUs are either false or materially misleading,” Ringer alleged.
“Despite public speculation on this point, Mr. Musk did not waive his right to review Twitter’s data and information simply because he chose not to seek this data and information before entering into the Merger Agreement,” Ringer added. “In fact, he negotiated access and information rights within the Merger Agreement precisely so that he could review data and information that is important to Twitter’s business before financing and completing the transaction.”
He also claimed that Twitter breached its obligations under the agreement to get Musk’s consent before changing its ordinary course of business, pointing to recent layoffs at the company.