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May 24, 2011

Twitter Finalizes $40 Million TweetDeck Acquisition: Report

By Beecher Tuttle, TMCnet Contributor

Twitter has finalized a deal to purchase social networking application maker TweetDeck for more than $40 million in cash and stock, sources with knowledge of the situation told CNN.

The alleged inking of the deal comes three weeks after TechCrunch reported that Twitter had agreed to acquire the third-party app developer for between $40-$50 million. Talk surrounding the reported deal had quieted until Monday, when the two companies signed papers finalizing the agreement, according to CNN.

Both Twitter and TweetDeck have refused to confirm the deal, just they did three weeks ago.

“For all those who might be curious, we continue to not comment on rumors,” the PR account for the micro-blogging site tweeted on Monday.

TweetDeck boss Iain Dodsworth took a similarly evasive approach, tweeting that “an impressive number of people seem to have my phone number and like to ring it at 4am.”

If the report is accurate, the acquisition would put an end to a long courting process for TweetDeck. Back in February, a number of media outlets reported that TweetDeck was on the verge of being acquired by Bill Gross's UberMedia, leading many to speculate whether the Pasadena-based Web company was planning a rival platform to Twitter.

TechCrunch's Michael Arrington noted in the May 2 report that Twitter made an unsolicited counter offer as part of a defensive strategy to prevent UberMedia from building a stable of Twitter-like platforms. UberMedia has already purchased several Twitter apps, including UberTwitter and EchoFon.

The rivalry between Twitter and UberMedia intensified in mid-February when the micro-blogging site suspended two of UberMedia's top mobile apps – UberTwitter and twidroyd – for apparent policy violations.

One month later, Twitter officially tightened its restrictions on third-party apps and said that it is no longer interested in allowing anyone to develop new Twitter clients.

Stay tuned to TMC (News - Alert) for confirmation of the Twitter/TweetDeck deal.

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Beecher Tuttle is a TMCnet contributor. He has extensive experience writing and editing for print publications and online news websites. He has specialized in a variety of industries, including health care technology, politics and education. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jennifer Russell

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