Trump-linked SPAC's stock falls as shareholders weigh delaying merger with ex-president's media firm

Trump-linked SPAC's stock falls as shareholders weigh delaying merger with ex-president's media firm

The TRUTH Social website is seen on a mobile device with an image of former US president Donald Trump in the background in this photo illustration in Warsaw, Poland on 23 February, 2022.

Nurphoto | Getty Images

Digital World Acquisition Corporation, the company that plans to take Trump Media and Technology Group public, saw its stock price slide Monday as shareholders consider delaying the merger and the former president contends with a host of legal problems.

A Monday filing from DWAC said that voting for a yearlong delay would open Tuesday. The current deadline to take Trump Media public is Sept. 8. DWAC has warned that it may be forced to liquidate if the deadline is not extended. A shareholder meeting is scheduled for Sept. 6.

Shares of DWAC closed down nearly 8% at $25.32, off 16% this month and significantly below their 2022 peak of about $97.

Representatives for DWAC didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

Trump Media and Technology Group controls Truth Social, which is reportedly facing severe financial difficulties. A merger with DWAC would give Trump’s company access to billions of dollars in publicly traded stock markets.

The former president created Truth Social to compete with Twitter after he was banned from the platform over his tweets regarding the Jan. 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol riot. On that day, hundreds of Trump’s supporters stormed the building in a bid to block Congress from confirming Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election.

Trump has been at the center of a criminal investigation into the allegedly improper removal of sensitive and secret documents from the White House. FBI agents searched the former president’s Mar-a-Lago home earlier this month. An affidavit justifying the search said there was “probable cause to believe that evidence of obstruction will be found” at his home.

DWAC warned last week that damage to the former president’s dwindling popularity could hurt the deal. Earlier this month, Trump Media’s trademark application for “TRUTHSOCIAL” was denied by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on the grounds that the title was confusingly similar to existing registered marks.

The Securities and Exchange Commission as well as the Justice Department have been investigating the proposed merger between DWAC and Trump Media. Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed Trump Media as it probes possible undisclosed conversations between the SPAC and Trump Media employees that may have violated securities regulations.

The former president is dealing with multiple investigations, including a probe into possible interference into Georgia’s presidential election process, and his role in the events of Jan. 6, 2021.