TikTok is reportedly considering a rebrand in the US to shed its Chinese roots
Avishek Das/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
- ByteDance, the company which owns short-form video app TikTok, has come under some fire in the US because it is headquartered in China.
- The US is increasingly worried about Chinese tech firms passing on information about American citizens back to the Chinese government, and has blacklisted Chinese mobile firm Huawei earlier in 2019.
- The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that the company is trying to come up with ways to distance itself from these its Chinese roots. Ideas reportedly include rebranding itself and moving to Singapore.
- A ByteDance spokesman denied that the company is considering moving or rebranding.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
View all Offers
OnePlus Nord 2 5G (Gray Sierra, 8GB RAM, 128GB Storage) I Extra upto Rs.1000 off on Exchange₹ 29999Buy On
- 19% OFF
Redmi Note 10 (Aqua Green, 4GB RAM, 64GB Storage) -Amoled Dot Display | 48MP Sony Sensor IMX582 | Snapdragon 678 Processor₹ 12999₹ 15999Buy On
OnePlus Nord 2 5G (Blue Haze, 8GB RAM, 128GB Storage) I Extra upto Rs.1000 off on Exchange₹ 29999Buy On
- 18% OFF
Redmi 9A (Nature Green, 2GB RAM, 32GB Storage) | 2GHz Octa-core Helio G25 Processor | 5000 mAh Battery₹ 6999₹ 8499Buy On
- 18% OFF
Redmi 9 (Carbon Black, 4GB RAM, 64GB Storage) | 2.3GHz Mediatek Helio G35 Octa core Processor₹ 8999₹ 10999Buy On
According to the Journal, TikTok employees have advised senior executives that the company could use a tactical rebrand to escape some of the recent scrutiny. It has already tried to blot out its Chinese roots at a user level by limiting the amount of China-made user content that appears on its app in the US, and in future the app's parent company ByteDance could decamp from Beijing to Singapore, sources also told the Journal.ByteDance already has something of a forked strategy with its apps. The homegrown version of TikTok is called Douyin and only available in China. TikTok is only available in non-Chinese markets.
A ByteDance spokesman denied to the Journal that TikTok is considering a rebrand, that it is considering moving to Singapore, and that it screens out Chinese content in the US. He added that the company is not focused on an IPO."It is well known that ByteDance was founded in China. But the reality is that the TikTok app does not operate in China, and we are building out and empowering teams in the markets where it does operate. We have been very open about this," a ByteDance spokesman told Business Insider. The Journal added that there is additional pressure from ByteDance's investors, SoftBank and Sequoia, who see a US expansion as vital to the firm's financial growth.
Despite its reported plans to distance itself from China's influence, it appears TikTok is still having to toe the line from Beijing, as one source told the Journal that when instructed the platform runs government ads free of charge.
- Fino Payments Bank files papers for ₹1,300 crore IPO
- OfBusiness, a platform that helps SMEs get raw materials, becomes the newest unicorn from India
- Tokyo Olympics: India's P V Sindhu loses to world number one Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei in the semis
- Droom founder explains why he is considering a US IPO and where he intends to spend the money
- 21 new COVID-19 cases reported at Tokyo Olympics, no athletes among them