US regulators investigate Trump’s social media deal

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U.S. regulators are reviewing a deal between Donald Trump’s fledgling social media company and an investment vehicle to bring the former president’s business to the stock market, documents showed on Monday.

The companies, once merged, said they plan to launch the nationwide “TRUTH Social” social media platform early next year, in hopes of competing with services like Twitter. , who banned Trump during the U.S. Capitol riot in January.

Digital World Acquisition Corp, which partners with Trump, said in a filing to the U.S. market watchdog, the Securities and Exchange Commission, that it had received “preliminary and factual inquiries from regulatory authorities, with which it cooperates ”.

Digital World, already listed on Wall Street, announced at the end of October its merger with Trump Media & Technology Group, allowing the ex-president’s company to be listed without the usual procedures.

In a joint statement, the two companies announced on Saturday that a group of institutional investors had pledged to contribute $ 1 billion to the transaction.

They did not specify in the regulatory document on Monday the identity of these investors.

Digital World says the SEC is seeking details of its board meetings, brokerage procedures, the identities of certain investors, and transactions with Trump’s company.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, for its part, requested information from DWAC on its trading activity ahead of the official announcement of the deal with TMTG on October 20.

“The investigation does not mean that the SEC has concluded that someone has broken the law or that the SEC has a negative opinion of DWAC or any person, event or security,” says the Digital World file.

Its stock was down 3% around 4:45 p.m. GMT on Wall Street.

Digital World is a special purpose acquisition company, sometimes referred to as a “blank check” company because it is incorporated for the sole purpose of merging with another entity.

Trump says the new platform will be an alternative to the Silicon Valley internet companies he says are biased against him and other conservative voices.

The 75-year-old was kicked out of Twitter – his favorite communication channel as president – as well as Facebook and YouTube after the January 6 uprising in which a crowd of Trump supporters, enraged by its repeated false claims, the November 2020 elections were stolen. of him, assaulted the United States Capitol.

Currently available for pre-order on the App Store, its launch is scheduled for the first quarter of 2022.

AFP

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