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Twitter says Elon Musk is making their trial ‘unreasonably elongated’

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SpaceX founder and chief engineer Elon Musk looks at his mobile phone in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S. January 19, 2020 (REUTERS)
SpaceX founder and chief engineer Elon Musk looks at his mobile phone in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S. January 19, 2020 (REUTERS)

Twitter says Elon Musk is making the lawsuit between the two “unreasonably elongated”, and the world’s richest man is conducting a “sideshow”.

Twitter’s lawyers said that it was “imperative” for the trial between the two – which would determine whether Mr Musk will buy the social media site in a $44bn deal – to happen at the “earliest possible … date”.

Twitter is hoping that the trial will take place in September in the Delaware Chancery Court; Mr Musk has pushed for it to happen in February.

Mr Musk has attempted to back out of the merger at an agreed price of $54.20 per share due to claimed concerns over bots on the platform.

Twitter said these claims are a “contractually irrelevant sideshow that Musk wants to use to disparage Twitter and prolong this litigation."

Twitter’s shares have dropped by over a third since Mr Musk announced that he wanted to purchase the social media site, due to the billionaire disparaging it repeatedly.

"Millions of Twitter shares trade daily under a cloud of Musk-created doubt. No public company of this size and scale has ever had to bear these uncertainties," Twitter said, adding that “this very public dispute harms Twitter with each passing day Musk is in breach.

“Musk amplifies this harm by using the Company’s own platform as a megaphone to disparage it.”

As well as purported doubts about bot numbers, Mr Musk’s lawyers also claimed that Twitter violated the acquisition agreement when it fired two high-level managers without informing Mr Musk first.

However, Mr Musk has also alluded that he would make redundancies at Twitter, saying that its costs are too high. Staff have been discussing resignations within the company should Mr Musk take over, The Independent understands.

According to reports, if the trial begins in February and does not end by April, the deal will collapse given that the debt financing package committed by banks for Mr Musk’s acquisition expires in April 2023.

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