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, according to two people familiar with the situation.
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 one of the people who has been briefed on the talks but who declined to be named as the information is not public. The person said the probability of Microsoft buying TikTok is “not higher than 20 per cent” 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 person, as the US social media platform “just doesn’t have enough money.”
ByteDance declined to comment when approached about the talks with Microsoft and Twitter.