A deal to put TikTok’s US operations in US hands is back on, in the latest development in this long-running saga. As TikTok was on the verge of being banned in the country, President Trump told reporters he had approved a deal for Oracle and Walmart to take a stake in the app.
On Friday, the US government announced that Chinese-owned apps TikTok and WeChat would be pulled from the app stores run by Apple and Google amid ongoing national security concerns. It would seem TikTok, at least, will now remain available.
Reuters reports that the approved deal will see Oracle and Walmart help to run a new company called TikTok Global, headquartered in Texas. Ultimately, a little over half of TikTok Global will be owned by US investors in TikTok’s parent company ByteDance.
In a statement, President Trump said that TikTok Global would provide around 25,000 new jobs in the US. He also promised that the move would mean TikTok was no longer a threat to national security, with all its US data stored on servers in the US.
#WeAreTikTok and we are here to stay! pic.twitter.com/AaA8OhpvGxSeptember 19, 2020
Typically for this particular ongoing news story, plenty of uncertainty remains about what will actually happen to TikTok in the US. There’s still no guarantee that the deal will go ahead, and nothing has yet been signed between the companies.
“We are pleased that the proposal by TikTok, Oracle, and Walmart will resolve the security concerns of the US Administration and settle questions around TikTok’s future in the US,” TikTok said in a press statement.
“Our team works tirelessly to provide a safe and inclusive platform and we’re thrilled that we will be able to continue serving our amazingly diverse and creative community.”
No doubt we’ll get more in the way of detail in the next few days and weeks, but it would appear that TikTok will now stay available in the US beyond this weekend, pending the full completion of the deal between ByteDance, Oracle and Walmart that’s now on the table.