Twitter has set Sept. 13 as the date for its shareholders to vote on Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s buyout of the company. The company said in a regulatory filing Tuesday that it was recommending shareholders vote in favor of completing the $44 billion deal.
That date comes ahead of a yet-to-be-announced start date for an October trial in the dispute between the billionaire, who is seeking to abandon the deal, and the San Francisco company. Twitter sued Elon Musk in Delaware after he said he wanted to walk away from the deal.
“We are committed to completing the merger at the price and on the terms agreed to with Mr. Musk. Your vote at the special meeting is critical to our ability to complete the merger“, Twitter said in a letter to its shareholders.
Earlier Tuesday, Elon Musk’s lawyers accused Twitter of slowing down the sending of documents ahead of the trial that is expected to decide whether the Tesla CEO should be forced to close the deal.
Elon Musk’s lawyers also said in a court filing that Twitter’s attorneys have refused to consent to a proposed Oct. 17 trial date and are insisting on an Oct. 10 trial start, using the uncertainty over the trial date to delay further scheduling discussions.
Elon Musk’s attorneys have asserted that Twitter’s proposed schedule is “an obvious attempt to rush the defendants“after a Delaware Chancery Court judge last week agreed to an expedited trial in a lawsuit brought by Twitter.
“Given the compressed timetable, court guidance is needed to break the impasse and allow things to move forward quickly“, attorney Edward Micheletti wrote in asking Chancellor Kathaleen St. Jude McCormick to grant Musk’s proposed schedule.
In April, Elon Musk agreed to buy Twitter by offering $54.20 per share and pledging to loosen the company’s content controls and eliminate fake accounts. As part of the deal, Musk and Twitter had agreed to pay each other a $1 billion breakup fee if either was responsible for the deal’s failure.
Twitter stock closed Tuesday at $39.34, well off its 52-week high of $71.92.
Elon Musk indicated earlier this month that he wanted to withdraw from the deal, prompting Twitter to file a lawsuit to enforce what he described as a “seller-friendly“.
The documents sought by Elon Musk’s lawyers include Twitter board meeting minutes and related documents, sales and advertising metrics, and manuals and policies regarding monetizable daily active use or users, or mDAU. This is a metric used by Twitter to measure the number of people or organizations using its platform.
Musk said Twitter has not provided him with enough information about the number of fake accounts on its service, but the company has estimated for several years that less than 5 percent of mDAUs are spam or fake accounts.
Twitter said last month that it was making raw data on hundreds of millions of daily tweets available to Musk.
Musk’s lawyers are asking for a trial date of Oct. 17 and for Twitter to immediately produce “key documents” and produce all raw data by Monday.
“Given the delay before the trial, every day counts“, wrote Elon Musk’s lawyer.
Tuesday’s filing suggests that Musk plans to file his response to Twitter’s complaint later this week.