Trump to launch a new social media platform Truth Social in SPAC deal

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Trump to launch a new social media platform, Banished from Twitter and Facebook, former President Donald Trump is setting out — again — to create a platform where he can communicate easily with his base and the rest of the world.

Former President Donald Trump announced Wednesday he will be launching his very own media network, including a social media platform called “TRUTH Social,” to “stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech.”

Trump to launch social media platform 'Truth Social' as part of SPAC deal -  MarketWatch

The app appears to be the first project of the Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG), which will list on the Nasdaq through a merger with Digital World Acquisition Group, according to an announcement tweeted out by spokeswoman Liz Harrington. The transaction values TMTG at up to $1.7 billion, Harrington said.

Trump to launch a new social media platform

Former U.S. President Donald Trump announced Wednesday he would launch his own social media platform, TRUTH Social, according to a press release by Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG).

In November, Trump’s new social network will launch a beta version, available to guests only. Its national rollout is expected in the first quarter of 2022, the press release said.

After being kicked off several social media platforms, Trump signaled his aspirations to create a rival social media platform. Earlier this year, major social media firms, including TwitterFacebook, and YouTube, banned or suspended Trump for violating their policies following the January 6 attack on the Capitol.

“I created TRUTH Social and TMTG to stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech. We live in a world where the Taliban has a huge presence on Twitter, yet your favorite American President has been silenced,” Trump said in the statement.

Trump said that the company’s mission is to create “a rival to the liberal media consortium and fight back against the Big Tech companies.

“We live in a world where the Taliban has a huge presence on Twitter, yet your favorite American president has been silenced,” Trump claimed.

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Earlier this year, Trump was notoriously banned by major social media giants following his posts related to the January 6 riots at the United States Capitol Building.

The move doesn’t come as a total surprise. Trump and his team of advisors have dropped hints for months that he might launch his social media app to rival Facebook and Twitter.

According to the press release, TRUTH Social is currently available for pre-order in the Apple App Store. A beta version will be available to guests starting in November 2021. A nationwide rollout is expected in the first quarter of 2022, the release said.

They will launch the TRUTH Social app through a new company formed by a merger of the Trump Media and Technology Group and Digital World Acquisition Corp, listed on the Nasdaq, as per its statement.

Former US president Donald Trump launches social media platform Truth Social,  World News - AsiaOne

(By the way, marketing materials for TRUTH’s iOS app show a screenshot with a list of posts from publications including The New York Times, Variety, Fox News and TechCrunch. Unfortunately, the headline displayed next to our logo has never appeared on this site, and TechCrunch does not have an account on TRUTH.)

He has held discussions with some different platforms throughout the year to find a new online megaphone. Mr. Trump had nearly 89 million followers on Twitter.

SPAC deals, such as the one Mr. Trump is doing, have become popular alternatives to traditional initial public offerings in the past year. The press release said that Trump Media & Technology Group would combine with a SPAC called Digital World Acquisition Corp., valuing the Trump venture at $875 million, including debt.

The bottom Line

The Digital World Acquisition SPAC has about $290 million on hand. Mr. Trump’s firm could use the money held by the SPAC to fund its growth, but that cash pile could shrink. That is because SPAC investors have a right to pull their money out of the deal before it is completed. Such withdrawals have skyrocketed in recent months, with shares of many SPACs falling after some companies that went public this way struggled to meet their growth targets.

Asked whether the deal would include private investment in public equity, or PIPE, financing, which often accompanies such arrangements, a spokesman for the SPAC said it couldn’t provide more details but would reveal more publicly soon.

Several former Trump administration officials are involved with their SPACs, including Wilbur Ross, Larry Kudlow, and Gary Cohn.

Trump announces social media platform launch plan, SPAC deal

SPAC deals have become a hot fundraising tool for digital media startups. For example, BuzzFeed Inc. announced a roughly $1.5 billion SPAC merger in June.

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