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Trump just made $1 billion. Where did it come from?

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Donald Trump’s new social media enterprise announced on Saturday that the blank-check company it set up to monetize the former president’s digital and political mojo has raised $1 billion — without identifying the members of the “diverse group of institutional investors” backing him.

Trump, a disinformation kingpin exiled from mainstream social media platforms, has positioned his gossamer startup, Truth Social, as a vehicle for battling “censorship and political discrimination” and the “tyranny of Big Tech.” It’s also a convenient way for Trump to continue his life’s work: separating investors and fans from their wallets by pitching promises that he routinely fails to keep.

To be sure, some investors have already done well in this charade. When the Trump Media and Technology Group announced in October that it would use Digital World Acquisition Corp. (DWAC), a special purpose acquisition company (or SPAC) to go public, the SPAC’s shares skyrocketed from $9.96 a share to $94.20 in two days. The stock has since settled to $44.97, but hedge funds and others that bought into DWAC early have enjoyed a handsome return.

On the other hand, the only publicly traded company Trump has managed, his ill-fated casino gambit, made multiple tours through bankruptcy, burning investors, banks and employees along the way and leaving behind a haunting collection of craters in Atlantic City. Trump,........

© The Japan Times

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