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Twitter emerges as TikTok' new bidders over Donald Trump's pressure to force the sale

11:14 | 10/08/2020

Twitter has eyed the Chinese app Tiktok, which has been feeling the pressure from the US over national security concerns.

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twitter emerges as tiktok new bidders over donald trumps pressure to force the sale
Twitter talked with Tik Tok about purchasing the US operations of the popular Chinese video app. (Photo: Netsale)

According to the Wall Street Journal, Twitter talked with Tik Tok about purchasing the US operations of the popular Chinese video app.

The US President Donald Trump issued an executive order that would effectively ban Tik Tok in the US. But since the order doesn't kick next month, it leaves open the prospect of a sale to a US-based company.

Microsoft, Apple, Google and Facebook have all been name-checked in the press as possible purchasers, and Microsoft has acknowledged it's pursuing a deal.

twitter emerges as tiktok new bidders over donald trumps pressure to force the sale
The US President Donald Trump issued an executive order that would effectively ban Tik Tok in the US (Photo: Bloomberg)

Trump said that Tik Tok is a national security threat since it collects US user's data and its owner ByteDance. ByteDance has denied that the app presents any such threat. It's not clear if Twitter will pursue a deal, said the Journal. Twitter would have a tougher time raising enough money to buy the app.

ByteDance has announced that it may sell Tik Tok's US business. The deal that it began to negotiate with Microsoft includes the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

ByteDance is being forced to sell an asset with huge growth potential whose closest - Youtube and Instagram - are valued over USD 100 billion. Tik Tok has a better advertising model for younger people than both companies, since it pushes brands to develop their Tik Tok ads. Commercials feel more modern and less intrusive so people may not skip them as often.

twitter emerges as tiktok new bidders over donald trumps pressure to force the sale
Tik Tok is worth between USD 30 billion and USD 50 billion (Photo: Bloomberg)

According to the report, Tik Tok is worth between USD 30 billion and USD 50 billion. Users in the four countries Microsoft has named only made up 10.3% of Tik Tok downloads in the last 30 days, reported by Business Insider.

Microsoft and ByteDance are expecting to complete its acquisition talks within the next three weeks, before the September 15 deadline. Microsoft has agreed with the US government to migrate over TikTok's engineering and backend code - the majority of which is based at ByteDance's China headquarters within one year, said the CNBC.

Microsoft said that it is considering to invite other American investors to acquire minority stakes in its portion of the TikTok business.

Microsoft is the second-most valuable tech company in the world, and therefore, is among an elite number of US tech companies with the bandwidth and money to afford to purchase TikTok. If Microsoft closes out the TikTok deal, its would likely face less regulatory and political pushback over the acquisition than the other US tech companies.

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Candy Lee