Landlord sues Twitter, saying $3.16 million owed in rent for San Francisco headquarters

Twitter Inc. is being sued by the landlord of its San Francisco headquarters, which accuses Elon Musk’s social-media company of not paying nearly $7 million in rent in December and January.

In a lawsuit filed Friday in California Superior Court in San Francisco, SRI Nine Market Square LLC said Twitter breached the terms of its lease in December by not making its monthly rent payment of nearly $3.4 million, for which it filed a notice of default on Dec. 5, 2022. According to the suit, the landlord recouped that amount from a line of credit Twitter had as a security deposit.

However, Twitter “again breached the lease by failing to pay monthly rent and additional rent due under the lease for the month of January 2023 in the sum of $3,427,722.14,” the suit said. After SRI Nine Market Square took another $266,000 from the line of credit — which is now apparently depleted — Twitter currently owes $3.16 million in rent, according to the suit.

SRI Nine Market Square said in the filing that it is seeking to raise Twitter’s line of credit to $10 million, based on language in the lease that triggers such a move if control of Twitter changed (Musk bought the company in late October), and claimed Twitter is refusing to do so.

The lawsuit was first reported by the San Francisco Chronicle.

Twitter, which dissolved its media relations team after Musk took over, did not respond to MarketWatch’s request for comment.

In December, the New York Times reported Twitter had stopped paying rent on its various offices as way to cut costs under Musk. The landlord of another one of Twitter’s offices in San Francisco sued for non-payment of rent in early January.

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