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Steve Ballmer boosts Twitter stake by 4 per cent

So what’s Steve Ballmer up to these days, now he’s not at the helm of Microsoft? He’s investing in the tech world, and specifically in Twitter – indeed he’s bought up a very large stake in the social network, despite its shaky performance in recent times.

Ballmer tweeted: “Good job @twitter,@twittermoments innovation, @jack Ceo, leaner, more focused. Glad I bought 4% past few months.”

And he previously bigged up Twitter a couple of weeks ago, with a tweet which read: “I think @twitter is remarkable. There is amazing chance to innovate and grow. Excited to see progress with @jack as CEO. Impressive dude!”

There was some confusion initially as to whether that first tweet announcing his 4 per cent stake was some sort of a hack, but a spokesman for Ballmer soon verified that it was a genuine statement, as Reuters reports.

This now means the ex-Microsoft CEO has around an $800 million (£520 million) stake in the social network, and is the third largest individual stakeholder in Twitter (after co-founder Evan Williams and Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the Saudi business magnate).

It makes you wonder if Ballmer knows something we don’t…

James Lau, who used to be Principal Lead Program Manager of OneNote, until he moved to Google at the start of 2015, made an interesting response to Ballmer’s tweet: “How does the rich get richer? Tweet what you stocks you buy of course! #RichGetsRicher #GoodJob.”

Twitter has been in poor form recently, failing to grow its user base, and of course having to lay off the best part of a tenth of its workforce as we reported last week (presumably what Ballmer was referring to when he spoke about a “leaner” Twitter).

Darren Allan
Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.