Microsoft, one of the leading technology companies in the world, was reportedly in talks with TikTok to acquire its business in the United States. Now, the company has confirmed this development and says that it aims to close the deal by 15th September.
In a statement, the company said that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and President Trump talked about the issue and added that “Microsoft is prepared to continue discussions to explore a purchase of TikTok in the United States.”
It also added that the acquisition of TikTok is subject to a complete security review and providing proper economic benefits to the United States. If the deal goes through, it will settle the controversy and give Microsoft a big player in the consumer tech segment.
The development comes amid concerns from the lawmakers about the Chinese government’s ability to use TikTok for obtaining data on American citizens. The short video social media platform is owned by China-based ByteDance.
Earlier, there were reports claiming that the United States is considering to ban TikTok, citing concerns about data privacy and security. This was in line with the recent similar developments in India, where the government has banned TikTok along with dozens of other Chinese applications.
TikTok has previously clarified that its US user data is already stored on US-based servers and backed up in Singapore, and thus, it is not subject to Chinese law. The company even hired Kevin Mayer from Disney to be the new CEO.
If Microsoft ends up acquiring TikTok, the deal will create a new structure where the Redmond-based giant would own and operate TikTok in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
In the year 2017, ByteDance acquired Musical.ly and then relaunched the platform under a new name — TikTok. The app has become so popular that a couple of months ago, it surpassed the 2 billion downloads mark.