Time is ticking for TikTok. They have to move now, and they have to move fast. Otherwise, they will lose all the hard work it has invested in building the app in the United States. Last week, President Donald Trump signed an executive order giving a life sentence to TikTok.
The order stipulates that ByteDance has to cease its operations if it doesn’t find a U.S.-based company that can take over its operations. As such, they have double time in finding one. If not, they can kiss their efforts goodbye. Fortunately, Microsoft expressed a strong interest in buying the company. Moreover, Microsoft isn’t the only company interested.
Reuters reports that Twitter is reportedly interested in buying TikTok. Sources close to the matter see a combination of the two companies happening. Microsoft is still the front runner, but having Twitter as a backup is the company’s fallback plan.
The Redmond-based tech giant has a war chest that dwarfs the assets of Twitter. As such, it may not have enough funding to work on a possible deal. TikTok is expected to be sold at a whopping AU$70 billion.
Nonetheless, the reports say that a merger isn’t exactly out of the question. Also, investors are looking at potentially pooling funds to make the deal happen. If it does, the terms may be tough for the shareholders. Some of them may want Twitter to just focus on their core product.
The main focus of the U.S. government is to clean up the operations of TikTok. It wants data stored outside the country to be brought back in. Microsoft has committed to doing such. However, they may face another battle in Congress amid the anti-trust issues surrounding the giant tech.
Just last week, Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple were all brought to testify before a House committee. All of them were grilled for anti-competition strategies. In other words, Microsoft gobbling up TikTok may spark another outrage in Congress.
This is where Twitter is at an advantage. Also, considering that Twitter doesn’t have a business in China, it will not be pressured by the government to succumb to its demands. Whereas, Microsoft has a large business at stake in the country.
The future of TikTok is still up in the air. Only the talks in the next few weeks could ultimately determine its fate.
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