Is the Truth Social deal Donald Trump’s last financial lifeline?

On the game show “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” contestants were given three lifelines, such as asking the audience or phoning a friend, to preserve their chance at a financial fortune. But when it comes to the billionaire Donald Trump, a different kind of lifeline may keep his finances afloat.

Axios on Friday reported that Trump Media and Technology Group, the parent company of the social media platform Truth Social, is merging with a special purpose acquisition company (commonly known as a SPAC) to become a publicly traded entity after the SPAC’s shareholders voted for the merger’s approval.

Trump might be able to secure a loan that gives him access to cash today — something he desperately needs to avoid selling or forfeiting his other assets.

Although the social media company is not profitable — as is sometimes the case with technology companies that access public markets — and has low revenue, the valuation of the new entity is expected to be in the billions of dollars, with Donald Trump’s stake worth in excess of $3 billion, if the stock price is able to stabilize.

And that is a big “if.”

This means Trump could have valuable stock that not only increases his net worth but also could help him post the cash or bond that is required in the civil fraud judgments imposed upon him by New York Attorney General Letitia James.

Reports are that Trump has what is known as a “lock-up agreement” related to his SPAC shares for a six-month period. This is a standard provision that keeps insiders from selling a newly listed company en masse and tanking the stock price. A six-month lock-up means that Trump may not sell any shares after the merger closes until around October.

If the board were to waive the lock-up provision, however, another lifeline could emerge: a collateralized loan. While the board wouldn’t want Trump to sell his holdings, with freely tradeable shares as collateral (as opposed to shares under the lock-up agreement), Trump might be able to secure a loan that gives him access to cash today — something he desperately needs to avoid selling or forfeiting his other assets.

One can surmise that this timing is not coincidental — sort of. This proposed merger has been in contention for years. According to an SEC filing, the definitive merger agreement between Trump Media and Technology Group and Digital World Acquisition Corp was entered into on October 21, 2021.

Since then, plenty of drama has kept the merger from closing, including, per Axios, “a multiyear saga that’s included civil lawsuits, criminal lawsuits, closing extensions, and vote postponements.”

So after all this time, the merger finally closing when Trump needs that financial lifeline seems related.

The deadline to post a bond that would allow Trump to appeal the verdict without his assets being seized is fast approaching on Monday. Trump’s legal team has reportedly said he had been turned down by 30 different companies that provide bonds already.

There are many hurdles that remain. One is that the merger takes time to close, and that may be too late for a transaction to take place. Another is the potential for the share price to fall once it begins trading under the newly closed entity, which may be too risky for Trump to get any type of collateralized “margin” loan, let alone one large enough to meet his needs.

For Trump, this merger could be his last lifeline to save his assets — but it very well may be too late. We will see if the board moves quickly enough and if he can phone a friendly financial services company that will see the new stock as strong enough collateral.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *