Twitter’s share price skyrockets on takeover speculation
Twitter’s share price has skyrocketed today on the back of speculation that Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer has partnered with Saudi investor Prince Al-Waleed Bin-Talal to mount a takeover of the micro blogging service.
News of the possible intervention saw Twitter’s stock soar to $17.72 having hit an all-time low of just $14.01 as recently as May following a stall in member growth over the first quarter.
Ballmer already owns four per cent of Twitter whilst Bin-Talal controls a five per cent stake but rumours persist that Ballmer is unhappy with the direction being taken by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey and is keen to take steps to remove him from the board and shake out the senior management team.
Despite becoming a go-to platform for breaking news, celebrities and official announcements Twitter has failed to maintain growth in its user base amidst complaints of a clunky user interface, widespread trolling and a failure to generate revenues.
In the second quarter Twitter posted revenues of $602m, a 20 per cent rise on the $502m earned last year but significantly below analysts’ expectations courtesy of muted advertiser demand.
Any potential buy-out wouldn’t come as a complete bolt from the blue with both News Corp and Google having been linked to potential buy-outs in the past.