Twitter shares slump again on report that takeover bids are unlikely

Shares of Twitter Inc slumped more than 12 per cent in early trading on Monday after a weekend Bloomberg report that the social media company was unlikely to receive any bids. Inc, Alphabet Inc’s Google and Walt Disney Co, which had worked with banks on a potential acquisition, are unlikely to proceed, Bloomberg reported on Saturday, citing people familiar with the matter. Twitter had planned to hold a board meeting with outside advisers on Friday to discuss a sale but cancelled, Bloomberg reported, citing one person familiar with the matter.

Twitter shares plunged about 20 per cent over the final two days of last week after technology website Recode reported that Google, Disney and Apple were not interested in buying the company, which put itself up for potential sale in September.

Salesforce Chief Executive Mark Benioff had publicly expressed his interest in Twitter, but stopped short of saying the company would make a bid.

Twitter’s stock, which closed at $19.85 US on Friday, fell to $17.31 shortly after the start of trading on Monday. At that price, the company has a market value of $12.24 billion US, compared with almost $53 billion at its peak in December 2013.

Twitter, struggling with stagnant user growth and continuing losses, had told potential acquirers it wanted any deliberations on a sale to conclude by the time it reported third-quarter results on Oct. 27, Reuters reported on Wednesday.

Many investors and analysts believe that Twitter, co-founded and run by Jack Dorsey, does not have a clear back-up plan if it is not acquired.