U.S. President Donuld Trump has given Microsoft one and a half months to finalize an agreement to acquire TikTok, Reuters reported, citing sources close to the company asking for their names to be withheld. Trump also spoke last week about banning the Beijing-based ByteDance-owned short video-based social media app in the U.S. after carrying a potential national security risk.
LOTS OF PERSONAL DATA
TikTok has registered about one billion people globally of which about one hundred million are located in the United States. Accordingly, the company handles a huge amount of personal data – this is what the US president sees as a threat. According to Reuters sources, meanwhile, Microsoft has been investigating the acquisition of the social media app in the U.S. sector for some time, as it could face rival tech giants like Facebook or Snap.
Although Trump rejected the idea of the acquisition in the first round, in a weekend meeting with Satya Nadella, the Microsoft chief seems to have succeeded in convincing the president of the potential benefits of the acquisition. Sources told the paper that several Donald Trump advisers and several members of the Republican Party argued in the negotiations to allow the acquisition after a ban on TikTok could alienate many young users ahead of the upcoming fall election.
The Redmond giant was given 45 days to go. to punch the deal. The deadline has been set by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), and Microsoft is working to bring the negotiations to a successful conclusion by September 15 this year. Negotiations between ByteDance and Microsoft will also be overseen by CFIUS, and the organization may block the acquisition – the Redmond company warns, of course, that it is far from certain that an agreement will be reached with the Chinese side.
closes, Microsoft will be able to take control of TikTok in Canada, Australia and New Zealand in addition to the United States, and it promises to ensure that U.S. user data remains in the country. The company also envisioned to involve additional U.S. investors in the acquisition – 70 percent of the investments put together by ByteDance would still come from the U.S.
COMPLETELY NEW BACKGROUND INFRASTRUCTURE?
Not clear yet, exactly how much it could be about the acquisition, even though the valuation of the complete ByteDance company is in excess of $ 50 billion, according to Reuters. It is also questionable at the moment whether, if the acquisition is successful, Microsoft and its co-investors plan exactly how to disconnect “Western” TikTok from ByteDance's infrastructure – according to informed sources, it is possible that the Redmond company will launch a new technology completely independent of China. will develop under the community app.
The relationship between China and the United States has been increasingly strained in recent times, both on a commercial and cybersecurity side, only exacerbated by a potential ban on TikTok. China Daily, a Chinese state newspaper cited by Reuters, called the U.S. action against ByteDance a witch hunt, adding that Washington had not provided evidence of the national security risks posed by TikTok.
Gellert is Technology Editor at Counting News Media and contributor at other major tech publications. Her interests includes testing new gadgets and reading.