ByteDance, the Chinese owner of short video hit TikTok, is preparing to escalate its legal and public relations battle against US President Donald Trump’s executive order to ban the app in the United States unless it is sold, reported the South China Morning Post.
Meanwhile, ongoing talks with potential suitor Microsoft, as well as reported preliminary talks with social media giant Twitter, are unlikely to end in a deal, said an SCMP source who has been briefed on the talks.
The source said the probability of Microsoft buying TikTok is “not higher than 20%” since the initial price offered by the US software giant was akin to “robbing the owner when his house is on fire”. And the chances of Twitter buying TikTok were said to be even smaller, according to the source, as the US social media platform “just doesn’t have enough money.”
“Yiming’s dream is to create a global business,” the source said, referring to Zhang Yiming, the 37-year-old founder of ByteDance. “But if he is set to lose TikTok in the US market either by selling it to a potential competitor or a forced exit, he will have nothing else to lose. Of course he will try every possible way to fight back.”