Rumours of a Buyout at Twitter Interest Facebook
Executives at Facebook and Google are considering a buyout of Twitter, according to reports.
The offer values the microblogging site at up to $10 billion.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the valuation is well above what the company is worth on paper and highlights the rush by investors to stake an early claim in a new technology bubble.
The $10 billion valuation stands in stark contrast to last year's estimated revenue of $45 million, which was further tempered by large investments in staff and data centres.
"Are these prices justifiable based on financial multiples? No," the paper quoted Ethan Kurzweil of venture capital firm Bessemer Venture Partners as saying. "But these start-ups are building social services and have lots of data about their users and the market is valuing that mightily right now."
Neither the big-name suitors nor Twitter commented on the figures or potential for a buyout, but the price tag is a huge increase from two months ago, when Twitter landed $200 million in new venture capital that valued the company at at $3.7 billion.
The rumours follow large investments in Facebook, significant offers for Groupon, the sale of The Huffington Post for $315 million, and a potential public offering from LinkedIn as technology companies dominate investors' thoughts.
Both Google and Facebook have discussed buying Twitter in the past and have kept their lines of communication open, people familiar with the matter told the Wall Street Journal, adding that companies including Facebook and Google had expressed "latent interest" in an acquisition.
Twitter co-founder Evan Williams and current chief executive Dick Costolo have both previously sold companies to Google.
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