Did the Moderna CEO, Stephane Bancel, really delete his Twitter account? Heavy has confirmed that yes, the news circulating on social media is accurate. However, according to financial records, although Bancel has been selling his Moderna stock regularly, he has not sold all of his Moderna stock as other rumors claimed. Here’s what you need to know.
Bancel’s Twitter Account, Which Was Once Tagged by Moderna, Has Been Deleted
The Twitter account @sbancel, which Moderna has tagged in the past, appears to be deleted. When going to the account at twitter.com/sbancel, a message is returned that reads, “This account doesn’t exist.”
Of course, it’s important to confirm that a username actually belongs to the person people claim it does. Heavy first was able to confirm this by tracking down a post by Moderna on Twitter, which has Twitter’s blue checkmark verification. In this post from November 2021, Twitter tagged Bancel’s Twitter account and wrote, “Congratulations to our CEO, @sbancel, for being awarded the Strategist Prize 2020 by @LesEchos for leading Moderna’s #COVID19 vaccine strategy, deemed as the most relevant industrial strategy of the past year.”
Internet Archive Shows Bancel Hasn’t Been Very Active on Twitter Since April 2019
Heavy went to Internet Archive to confirm that Bancel had actually used the account in the past, and it does appear that Bancel was once active on Twitter with the @sbancel account, but had not been on Twitter much since 2019. Starting on February 11, the occasional archives showed that the account no longer existed. The account wasn’t archived every day, however, so it is possible it was deleted before February 11.
The next most recent archive from November 2, 2021, reveals that Bancel was once active on Twitter.
The account featured a profile picture of Bancel and the bio read “Moderna CEO. Likes & RTs are not endorsements.” He had 4,377 tweets, 6,396 followers, and was following 16 people at the time. A tweet from Moderna was pinned at the top.
However, it appears that he may not have used Twitter much since April 2019, according to the November archive, which shows his most recent retweets being April 2019 articles and tweets.
Internet Archive doesn’t show replies to tweets, but it appears that Bancel used to be active on Twitter but hadn’t been using it much since April 2019.
Heavy also identified Bancel’s user ID in the source code, to determine if the account had simply changed handles.
Searching https://twitter.com/intent/user?user_id=120730781 revealed that the user ID “120730781” has not been switched to a different account name. It simply returns a 404 response.
According to the archived Twitter bio, Bancel had joined Twitter in March 2010.
Back in 2016 he was fairly active on Twitter.
Records Show He Has Sold Moderna Stock But Didn’t Sell All of His Holdings, as Some Rumors Had Claimed
Some people on Twitter also noted that Bancel had been selling some of his Moderna stock. WallMine reported that Bancel had sole 19,000 shares for a little under $3 million on February 9, along with 19,000 shares for a little over $3 million on February 2. He has sold blocks of shares periodically since November 2019. The website noted, however, that he still owns more than seven million shares in Moderna as of February 9 and has not dumped all his stocks, as some social media sources were incorrectly reporting. The source that WallMine listed for its latest update from February 9 is an SEC form.
Yahoo Finance also has a record of Bancel’s Moderna stock sales. Insider Screener also shares transaction updates.