News Corp denies rumors of Twitter bid

Reuters News
Posted: Jan 20, 2016 2:39 PM

(Reuters) - Rupert Murdoch's News Corp said rumors about the company's interest in buying microblogging site Twitter Inc or building a stake in it were untrue.

Twitter's shares, which rose as much as 14 percent, pared some gains and were up 5.2 percent at $17.55 in late afternoon trading. The rumors had lifted the stock from a record low.

Unconfirmed chatter about potential News Corp interest in Twitter circulated on Wednesday, with the rumors intensifying after a CNBC segment, tech website Re/code said.

The social media site was evaluated as a takeover target because of the company's shrinking stock price, Re/code said.

A spokesman for News Corp said there was no truth to the rumors.

Twitter has been the subject of takeover rumors in the past, including a fake report attributed to Bloomberg that claimed the company had received an offer to be acquired for $31 billion.

Twitter had in the past received a bid from Alphabet Inc's Google, according to reports.

Twitter trades at 28.12 times forward earnings, below its peer median of 36.06. Facebook has a PE of 33.08, while LinkedIn Corp's is 52.64, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Up to Tuesday's close, the stock had fallen nearly 41 percent since co-founder Jack Dorsey was named permanent CEO in October.

(Reporting by Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru and Jessica Toonkel in New York; Editing by Don Sebastian and Sriraj Kalluvila)