Donald Trump’s new social media company and its special purpose acquisition company partner said on Saturday the partner had agreements for $1bn in capital from institutional investors.
The former president launched Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG) in October. He unveiled plans for a new messaging app called Truth Social, meant to rival Twitter and the other social media platforms that banned him following the deadly attack on the US Capitol on 6 January.
Trump remains in extensive legal jeopardy, arising from both his lie that his defeat by Joe Biden was caused by electoral fraud – which stoked the attack on Congress – and his financial affairs.
Amid investigations of the Trump Organization, Trump’s personal worth is reckoned to have plummeted. In October, for the first time, Forbes dropped him from its list of the 400 wealthiest Americans.
Last month, discussing a New York investigation of Trump’s tax affairs, the billionaire’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen said he believed prosecutors in New York could “indict Donald Trump tomorrow if they really wanted, and be successful”.
TMTG’s plan is to become a publicly listed company through a merger with the publicly traded Digital World Acquisition, a special purpose acquisition company formed with the sole purpose of acquiring a private company and taking it public.
The institutional investors were not identified in a press release issued on Saturday by TMTG and Digital World. The money would come from “a diverse group” of investors after the two companies are combined, it said.
Digital World said in the release that the $1bn is above the $293m (minus expenses) that it may invest.
“I am confident that TMTG can effectively deploy this capital to accelerate and strengthen the execution of its business, including by continuing to attract top talent, hire top technology providers, and roll out significant advertising and business development campaigns,” Digital World’s chief executive, Patrick Orlando, said.
Trump is listed as chair of TMTG. He will get tens of millions in special bonus shares if the combined company performs well, handing the former president possibly billions of dollars in paper wealth.