Musk pledged to pay $54.20 a share for Twitter in April
Sources close to the case told The New York Post that the countersuit was intended to push a Delaware Court of Chancery judge to grant Musk’s legal team more time to gather information about bots on Twitter – the primary reason Musk gave for reneging on the deal.
FILE: Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks before unveiling the Model Y at Tesla’s design studio in Hawthorne, Calif., March 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File / AP Newsroom)
Twitter sued Musk last Tuesday in a bid to force him to complete his $44 billion takeover of the social media company, accusing him of “outlandish” and “bad faith” actions that have the platform irreparable harm and “wreaked havoc” on its stock price.
Musk pledged in April to pay $54.20 a share for Twitter, which agreed to those terms after reversing its initial opposition to the deal. But the two sides have been bracing for a legal fight since the billionaire said a week ago that he was backing away from his agreement to buy the company.
In a filing with the Delaware Court of Chancery on Friday, Musk’s lawyers accused Twitter of withholding information about fake accounts and of creating delays, providing evasive responses and putting up technical obstacles. The filing also disputed Twitter’s request for an expedited trial, claiming that it would take months to obtain information from Twitter and to depose numerous witnesses on the subject of fake accounts.
FILE: The Twitter icon is displayed on a mobile phone. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File / AP Newsroom)
The filing repeated several other accusations Musk has lodged previously, including the claim that Twitter violated the acquisition agreement when it fired two high-level managers without first informing Musk.
Musk has 20 days from when Twitter filed his lawsuit against him, to file his own counterclaims. The first hearing is scheduled for Tuesday. Twitter’s legal team wants a four-day trial starting in September, while Musk is pushing for a later court date.
Delaware Court of Chancery chancellor Kathaleen McCormick is expected to weigh Twitter’s request for an expedited trial. McCormick would also hear Musk’s countersuit were his legal team to file one.