Twitter’s SF landlords sue for alleged non-payment of rent

Shorenstein accuses Musk’s social media firm of failing behind by $6.8M

Brandon Shorenstein and Twitter's Elon Musk
Brandon Shorenstein and Twitter's Elon Musk (Getty)

Landlords in San Francisco have sued Elon Musk’s Twitter for allegedly not paying rent after the billionaire took control of the firm.

The landlord of Twitter’s South of Market headquarters sued the social media company after it allegedly failed to pay almost $6.8 million in rent in December and January, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

SRI Nine Market Square accused Twitter of breaching the lease of its 462,900-square-foot hub at 1355 Market Street after being served with a notice of default in December, according to the complaint.

The landlord, an affiliate of San Francisco-based Shorenstein and JPMorgan Chase of New York, said it drew from most of Twitter’s $3.6 million security deposit to satisfy the December rent, but Twitter still owes $3.1 million in unpaid rent from January.

It’s also seeking to increase Twitter’s line of credit to $10 million, based on a clause in its lease triggered by the transfer of control of the company, but said Twitter has refused to do so.

Elon Musk bought the company in late October for $44 billion. He later fired janitors at its San Francisco headquarters, forcing workers to temporarily bring their own toilet paper.

Landlords across town and around the globe are now suing Twitter for allegedly not paying rent.

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They include an affiliate of Columbia Property Trust, owner of 650 California Street in the Financial District, which last month alleged Twitter owes $136,260 in back rent.

The Crown Estate, which manages property for King Charles III of the United Kingdom, also sued Twitter for alleged unpaid rent in a London office, the Telegraph reported.

And Twitter was sued by the landlord over alleged unpaid rent after vacating its Seattle office.

Twitter stopped paying rent at all its offices in an effort to renegotiate leases and cut costs, The New York Times reported last month.

Twitter, which laid off its communications team, didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment by the Chronicle. Shorenstein declined to comment.

San Francisco, whose inspector found beds in two of Twitter’s offices last month, is now investigating whether the company illegally converted offices into housing.

Dana Bartholomew

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