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Saudi News Corp-investor billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal has recently purchased a $300 million stake in a worldwide-known microblogging technology company Twitter.
Actually, Twitter is known as a mystery to many investors, since, regardless of its impressive userbase, its commercial model is still far from a very efficient one. Nevertheless, the billionaire prince, himself worth around $19.6 billion, has recently invested $300 million into the service. Alwaleed, nephew of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, made the investment via his Kingdom Holding Company, which is known for being in long talks with the online service. Kingdom Holding Company owns a 7% share of News Corporation, the second-highest after Rupert Murdoch.
Kingdom Holding Company announced in a statement that it had been talking to the micro-blogging service for several months already and is combing the books for due diligence. The company also reaffirmed its ability to identify suitable opportunities to invest in promising, high-growth businesses having a global impact, according to Alwaleed’s statement.
Despite the fact that Twitter is still working on a good way to really monetize the influence it wields, the Kingdom Holding Company believes there’s an opportunity there to leverage the nature of the media industry in common. Hal Stokes, social media director at Essence, explained in the interview that this move is an excellent pure business decision. He pointed out that as the world progressively becomes tech-driven, and media is progressively becoming social media, it is just a smart, progressive business deal to diversify his investments.
Hal Stokes does not really believe that there will be any considerable impact on Twitter's everyday operations, because Internet users will vote with their feet. He calls it the beauty of social media, which Internet users finally decide. In case the industry offers them a great service which suits their needs, they will use it, stop doing this and they could be able to move elsewhere. Hal Stokes can't realize that any considerable impact will materialize.
According to official data, DST Global's $400 million for a 5% stake of Twitter valued it at about $8 billion in August 2011. If you take into account these figures, Alwaleed's investment measures up to about 3.75%.