- REUTERS/B Mathur
Steve Ballmer owns 4% of Twitter.
On Friday morning, the Los Angeles Clippers owner tweeted:
We weren’t sure at first whether this tweet was real, because it was not from a verified account.
But a source familiar with the situation confirmed that it was a real account and that Ballmer did in fact own 4% of Twitter.
Ballmer followed up in an email to Bloomberg to confirm the news.
Twitter is valued at $20 billion, so 4% of the company is worth $800 million. (We don’t know when the purchase was made, so it’s unclear how much Ballmer paid.)
Twitter has been beat down by the public market as investors question whether it will be able to grow its user base to massive Facebook-like levels. The company just appointed its cofounder Jack Dorsey as full-time CEO, but he’s also running Square, a payments company that is pursuing an initial public offering.
Initially we were skeptical of the tweet because it was sent from a new, unverified account. Ballmer had previously tweeted from the @clippersteveb account, but for whatever reason he switched to this other account.
Ballmer is worth $23 billion, according to Forbes, so this isn’t a massive risk to his personal fortune.
Twitter is up ~5% on the news.