Passages from a merger agreement submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission make clear that Donald Trump’s newest venture is planning for his unpredictable future.
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Trump’s status won’t remain a mystery forever. In a Tuesday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the SPAC helping Trump’s business go public said it would file another document explaining the names and interests of the directors and officers behind the Trump Media and Technology Group.
Helming a public company could be challenging for the former president, given all the rules that come with it. Trump previously led such a business, Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts. Shareholders sued after he used the publicly traded company to buy a casino he personally owned at a suspiciously high valuation. Trump fought the allegations for a half decade, then settled around 2002 without admitting wrongdoing. As part of the settlement, he agreed to a new set of rules on corporate governance, including one that required a special committee to approve deals involving Trump’s other businesses.
“If Trump is really an officer or director of this company, as opposed to a licensor of his name or something like that, I expect he will be on the wrong end of a securities-fraud suit before long,” says Michael Klausner, a business and law professor at Stanford. “I can’t imagine him being any more truthful about his business than he is about anything else. Especially when it comes to size—the company, his following on the platform, crowds or other size-related facts—he just makes it up.”