December 1, 2010
Bidding War For Twitter Raises Valuation To Nearly $4 Billion.
Kleiner Perkins Currently In Pole Position
by Michael Arrington
Two weeks ago we reported that Twitter was mulling over raising a big new round of financing and the expected valuation was in the $3 billion range. Things have developed since then, it seems.
The bidding has gotten more intense from what we’re hearing. Russian firm DST, among others, submitted offers to invest valuing the company above $3 billion, say multiple sources. But the current leader, and likely winner, is Kleiner Perkins, say multiple sources. And the likely valuation when the smoke clears will be close to $4 billion.
Alpha investor and Kleiner investor John Doerr is personally leading the charge, we’ve heard, and is acting something like a dog with a bone that won’t let go. “Doerr wants to own part of Twitter, And Doerr generally gets what he wants” says one person with knowledge of the negotiations.
Is the deal done? No. Another investor could step up with an even higher valuation, forcing Twitter to make a difficult (even legally difficult) decision to pass on Kleiner. But as things stand right now, our understanding is Kleiner is in the pole position on the round, and unless something dramatic happens, they’ll soon be an investor.
This fits in neatly with Kleiner’s push to invest in the “third wave” of technology disruption. See his April guest post here on TechCrunch for more details on how they’re thinking about their current investment strategy.