Steve Ballmer owns 4% stake in Twitter: Report

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Updated: April 17, 2019 1:39:00 PM

Steve Ballmer's stake is worth a little more than $800 million as of Twitter's stock close of $29.71 on Thursday. The stock was up 3.6 percent at $30.76 in afternoon trading on Friday.

Former Microsoft Corp Chief Executive Steve Ballmer owns a 4 percent stake in Twitter Inc , Bloomberg reported, citing an email from him.

A Twitter account with the handle @Steven_Ballmer tweeted  on Friday that Ballmer had bought the stake over the past few months.

Ballmer’s stake is worth a little more than $800 million as of Twitter’s stock close of $29.71 on Thursday. The stock was up 3.6 percent at $30.76 in afternoon trading on Friday.

Ballmer now owns more of Twitter than the company’s co-founder, Jack Dorsey, who was named permanent chief executive last week.

Dorsey owned about 21.9 million shares, or about 3 percent of Twitter, as of August.

“@jack Ceo, leaner, more focused,” the tweet said.

Ballmer’s investment is a sign that Twitter’s efforts to revive growth under Dorsey is being appreciated, Monness, Crespi, Hardt, & Co Inc analyst James Cakmak said.

“I think it’s just another point of evidence that the step that they are taking to redirect the business toward growth is resonating”, Cakmak said.

Twitter said on Tuesday it will lay off about 8 percent of its workforce and said on Wednesday it hired Google Inc executive Omid Kordestani as executive chairman.

“It could be”, FBN Securities analyst Shebly Seyrafi said when asked if Ballmer’s stake could be indicative of confidence in Dorsey and his strategy.

“It depends on the timing of his investment. I’m not sure how much of his 4 percent was acquired before Dorsey was appointed interim or permanent CEO.”

“Like @alwaleedbinT move too,” the tweet said, referring to Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal.

The prince and his investment firm, Kingdom Holding , said earlier this month they had raised their stake in Twitter to more than 5 percent.

Investors in any company are required to disclose their holding in a regulatory filing if they own more than 5 percent of a company.

Twitter and Ballmer were not immediately available for comment.

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