Judge clears way for merger vote that could mean $4B windfall for Trump

A Delaware judge won’t stand in the way of a March 22 shareholder vote on a merger involving Trump Media & Technology Group that may provide a $4 billion windfall for former President Donald Trump.

Delaware Chancery Court Judge Sam Glasscock III said Saturday he wouldn’t hold up the vote because of complaints by Trump Media co-founders Andy Litinsky and Wes Moss that the former president seeks to dilute their 8.6% stake in the business as part of the merger.

Litinsky and Moss — ex-contestants on Trump’s TV show The Apprentice who joined forces with him to form Trump Media — allege the former president wants to increase the amount of shares in Trump Media to water down their stake and potentially generate billions to pay off legal judgments.

Glasscock declined to hold a hearing on the challenged merger before the March 22 vote because if Trump agrees to put the extra shares in an escrow account during the dispute, then “maybe the whole thing will go away,” he noted in a Zoom call.

Officials at Digital World Acquisition Corp. – the blank-check company slated to host the vote — have already agreed to escrow the disputed stock in a separate suit filed by Patrick Orlando’s ARC Global Investments II. In its suit, ARC challenged the conversion rate proposed for its founder’s stake, with the firm arguing it should get more shares in the merged company. Orlando is Digital World’s ex-chief executive officer.

Lori Will, the Chancery judge in that case, earlier this week turned down a request to expedite the suit, citing the escrow.

Digital World’s stock has soared this year, valuing Trump’s stake at billions of dollars, at least on paper. It’s a possible financial lifeboat for the ex-president, who faces hundreds of millions in legal judgments from the state of New York’s suit targeting fraudulent valuations of his assets and advice columnist E. Jean Carroll’s suit over statements Trump made about her allegations he sexually assaulted her. Trump posted a nearly $92 million bond in that case Friday.

The case by Litinsky and Moss is United Atlantic Ventures v Trump Media, 2024-0184, Delaware Chancery Court (Georgetown).

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