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Musk’s $44 bln buyout of Twitter faces U.S. antitrust review -report

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May 5 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is examining the takeover of Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) by the CEO of Tesla (TSLA.O) for $44 billion, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday, quoting someone familiar with the deal.

The FTC declined to comment, while Musk could not be reached for comment.

The agency will decide next month whether to conduct a full antitrust investigation into the proposed transaction, the person told Bloomberg. Such an investigation would delay the conclusion of the agreement by several months.

Antitrust experts said the agency is unlikely to find evidence that Musk’s purchase of Twitter is illegal under antitrust law.

The FTC is already investigating Musk’s initial purchase of a 9% stake in Twitter, looking into whether he complied with an antitrust reporting requirement when he acquired the shares in early April. Read more

One of the critics of the deal has been the Open Markets Institute, which said it should be shut down to avoid giving an already powerful man “direct control over one of the most important platforms in the world. for communications and public debates”. He also cited Musk’s ownership of satellite communications company Starlink as a concern.

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The deal has the backing of Republicans, who hope conservatives banned from the site, like former President Donald Trump, will be allowed to return.

While Musk has tweeted about free speech, when discussing plans for Twitter, he’s more focused on increasing revenue by getting more people to use it or cutting expenses like employee compensation. leaders. He hasn’t said anything publicly about allowing former banned users to come back.

Reporting by Diane Bartz in Washington and Tiyashi Datta in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni and David Gregorio

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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