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Social media giant Twitter held talks in recent months about acquiring Clubhouse, but discussions have stalled. Twitter has developed its own Clubhouse-like audio-based platform called Spaces. Photo: Agence France-Presse

Twitter said to have held discussions for US$4 billion takeover of audio-based social network Clubhouse

  • The two social media companies held talks in recent months, putting the valuation of Clubhouse at roughly US$4 billion
  • Major tech firms, including Microsoft, Facebook and Twitter, have gone to work on their own versions of Clubhouse, as the audio chat app’s popularity soared
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Twitter held talks in recent months to acquire Clubhouse, the buzzy audio-based social network, according to people familiar with the matter.

The companies discussed a potential valuation of roughly US$4 billion for Clubhouse, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. Discussions are no longer ongoing, and it is unclear why they stalled, the people added.

A Twitter spokesman declined to comment. A Clubhouse representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Bloomberg News reported earlier this week that Clubhouse is in talks to raise funding from investors in a round valuing the business at about US$4 billion.
Invitation-only audio chat app Clubhouse was launched on Apple’s App Store in April 2020. Photo: Shutterstock

After the talks with Twitter failed to proceed, Clubhouse began to explore whether it made sense to raise financing at that valuation instead.

The app lets users host their own online radio shows. Listeners can tune in to hear interviews or panel discussions and ask to participate in live chats.

Clubhouse is barely a year old, but has drawn appearances from some of the biggest names in business and Hollywood. Established social media companies have quickly gone to work on their own versions of Clubhouse, including Twitter.

Facebook is exploring one, too, and Microsoft Corp’s LinkedIn and Slack Technologies have also said they are working on similar features for their networks.

The rise and fall of Clubhouse in China: how the popular app came and went in just a few days

Twitter shares were up about 3 per cent on Wednesday, giving the San Francisco-based company a market value of US$55.1 billion.

Twitter’s Clubhouse competitor, called Spaces, launched in late 2020, though it is still in beta form and not all users can create or host public discussions.

Company chief executive Jack Dorsey is bullish on the potential for audio as a new way for people to interact on Twitter, and the company has long bet on live content through partnership deals and acquisitions.

At a press event on Wednesday, Twitter head of revenue product Bruce Falck said the company is considering ways to monetise Spaces, but those discussions are still in the very early stages.