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CNBC

Twitter the subject of takeover speculation

Twitter co-founder quoted as saying that the company is in a 'strong position; and board members 'have to consider the right options'

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 01 September, 2016, 4:35pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 01 September, 2016, 6:01pm

Twitter, the US social media company whose share price has stuttered over concerns about user growth, has become the target of takeover speculation again, sending its share price 4.5 per cent higher on Wednesday.

In the past, the company has frequently been cited as a takeover target for one of the larger technology giants, particularly Alphabet, parent company of Google, or Facebook, its bigger rival which has made previous approaches.

There is now greater momentum building behind the end-of-summer takeover chatter after Evan Williams, Twitter's co-founder who is still a board member of the company he founded, said in an interview with Bloomberg that the company is in a "strong position" and fellow board members "have to consider the right options".

With a share price now less than one-third its 2014 peak price of US$69, Twitter looks much more digestible. And after Microsoft's US$26.2 billion acquisition of LinkedIn was announced in June, speculation that the much more visible Twitter might be next grew.

Twitter's success in building a real-time platform for discussing news and sporting events, something which rivals are also chasing, gives it an advantage in selling advertising, via promoted tweets, accounts or trends. As an independent company, its sales and user growth have disappointed Wall Street investors.