Elon Musk's Twitter acquisition clears U.S. antitrust review. On Friday, the regulatory waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 officially expired.
HSR requires companies to notify the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice in advance of transactions that exceed a certain threshold. The agencies have 30 days from the date of notification to conduct an initial investigation into the transaction to determine if additional information is needed to assess its legality. That deadline has expired, which means that the head of the most disruptive companies in the world, Elon Musk, is one step closer to completing a $44 billion deal.
Twitter stressed that the completion of the deal is still subject to the remaining customary closing conditions, including shareholder and remaining applicable regulatory approvals, according to Competition Policy International. The deal is expected to close in 2022.
However, at the moment there are some obstacles that are temporarily delaying the completion of the deal. Since Twitter stated that the internal estimate of spam and fake accounts make up less than 5% of the platform's users, and some evidence suggests a higher percentage, Musk has put the deal on hold until it can be finalized that this is true.
Spam and fake accounts create a big problem for Twitter users. At the same time, independent research shows that there are indications that such accounts may even be used by the platform itself to increase interactions with paid advertising. Musk unequivocally stated that he would fight spam and fake accounts, so he pays special attention to this issue. In his opinion, at least 20% of Twitter users are spam and fake accounts, which is fundamentally different from Twitter's statement. Musk would be willing to renegotiate the deal for a lower price proportionate to the total percentage.
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