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Twitter going after friends, colleagues over every chat about buyout: Musk

The billionaire on Wednesday complained about it to the judge overseeing their legal dispute

Elon Musk

Elon Musk

Jef Feeley | Bloomberg
Elon Musk says Twitter Inc. is casting too wide a net for the names of those he talked to about his proposed $44 billion buyout of the social media company.  

The billionaire on Wednesday complained about it to the judge overseeing their legal dispute. After a fusillade of document demands over the acquisition, which Twitter has sued Musk to complete, Twitter is now going after friends, colleagues and firms far outside the case’s scope for information on the deal’s financing, his legal team argued.

In a letter to Delaware Chancery Court Judge Kathaleen St. J. McCormick, Musk’s attorneys said they had already handed over the names of “scores of individuals and entities” with “unique information” about the financing. They said Twitter at this point is pushing for documents from anyone “who might have had a passing conversation” with Musk about the buyout.

Both sides are jockeying for position as they prepare for an Oct. 17 trial, sending out a torrent of subpoenas to equity investors, advisers and banks involved in the proposed acquisition. On Thursday, Musk filed notice of subpoenas served on advertising technology firms Integral Ad Science and DoubleVerify. In trying to avoid the buyout, he claims Twitter has understated the number of bot and spam accounts on the platform.

Among the people and firms Twitter has described as “actual or potential” co-investors in the deal are Citadel Chief Executive Officer Ken Griffin and Founders Fund Growth II Management, a venture capital fund owned by PayPal co-founder and longtime Musk friend Peter Thiel. 

At issue in Wednesday’s letter is who qualifies as a potential co-investor in Musk’s $7.1 billion equity raise for the buyout. Musk’s side says Twitter wants to include anyone the Tesla Inc. CEO talked to about the deal in “even the briefest, non-substantive, social interactions.” 

A Twitter spokesman declined to comment on the letter.

The case is Twitter v. Musk, 2022-0613, Delaware Chancery Court (Wilmington).

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First Published: Aug 19 2022 | 9:06 AM IST

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