While everyone seemed to regard the validation of the takeover of Twitter as a formality, Elon Musk has just announced the suspension of the operation. But what could have put a deal of such magnitude on hold?
Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of usershttps://t.co/Y2t0QMuuyn
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 13, 2022
As the billionaire indicates on his Twitter account, it is about fake accounts and spam. In a Reuters article (which Musk shares on Twitter), we learn that the share of fake accounts and spam accounted for less than 5% active and monetizable daily users during the first quarter of 2022.
However, during this same quarter 229 million users received advertisements on the social network. So inevitably, the share of fake accounts and spam is important in a buyback operation.
Elon Musk, who is about to pay 44 billion dollars to buy the social network, wants to know more. This is all the more important since it announced before the takeover that the removal of fake accounts, spam and bots was one of its priorities. He therefore logically announced the suspension of the buyback operation while verifying these figures.
In an unequivocal tweet, Jane Manchun Wong, coder who is shaking Silicon Valley, did not fail to recall that Twitter was full of fake accounts, spam and bots in the name of… Elon Musk.
But that <5% are pretty targeted. They aim at accounts with large followings, such as yourself. This problem still needs to be fixed
– Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) May 13, 2022
Twitter stock plummets
Inevitably, such an announcement did not fail to make investors react. Since posting the announcement on Twitter, the company’s stock has fallen sharply. At the time of writing these lines, it has already unscrewed by almost 18%.
This episode echoes remarks made by representatives of the company. Twitter has indeed declared that this file faces several risks until its final conclusion.
First, whether advertisers would continue to allocate as much budget to Twitter once Elon Musk was in charge.
Then (and this risk is directly related to the first), Twitter did not hide “potential uncertainty regarding (its) plans and (its) future strategy”. One thing is certain: when Elon Musk is around, we are never at the end of our surprises