NEW YORK — Twitter stock fell Monday after Tesla chief Elon Musk ditched a $44-billion deal to buy the social media giant.
The platform stock dropped 5.46 percent on Wall Street, to $34.80 by around 7:05 a.m. (11:05 GMT). It had lost 5.10 percent before the weekend.
Musk on Friday pulled the plug on the deal, accusing the company of "misleading" statements about the number of fake accounts, according to a letter from his lawyers, a copy of which was filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
Musk's effort to terminate the deal that he inked in April sets the stage for an epic court battle over a billion-dollar breakup fee.
The social network says the number of fake accounts is less than five percent, a figure challenged by the multi-billionaire who believes the number to be much higher.
According to several US media, Twitter has hired prominent New York law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Twitter declined to comment to AFP.
After the news broke, Musk tweeted: "They said I couldn't buy Twitter. Then they wouldn't disclose bot info. Now they want to force me to buy Twitter in court. Now they have to disclose bot info in court," accompanied by pictures of him laughing.
For analyst Dan Ives at Wedbush Securities, "this is a 'code red' situation for Twitter and its Board as now the company will go head to head against Musk in a Game of Thrones court battle."
"We see no other bidders emerging at this time while legal proceedings play out in the courts." — Agence France-Presse