Active CFIUS Review into ByteDance’s Acquisition of TikTok

Posted on 07/30/2020

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin confirmed to the public that there is an active CFIUS review into ByteDance’s 2017 purchase of TikTok (then known as Shanghai-based video app Music.aly). TikTok and ByteDance are both Chinese companies; however, CFIUS has oversight because Music.aly registered its U.S. operations. CFIUS stands for Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.

Some U.S. policymakers have called for a banning of TikTok due to cybersecurity concerns and linkages to the Chinese Communist Party. Joe Biden’s campaign told its staff to delete TikTok from their phones due to security and privacy concerns, according to a report. In July, the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs unanimously passed a bill that would bar U.S. federal employees using TikTok on government-issued devices.

In the U.S., old mergers can forcibly happen. Investors in Beijing-based ByteDance are valuing TikTok at around US$ 50 billion, more than Snap Inc. (Snapchat). TikTok has projected 2020 revenue of about US$ 1 billion, according to various media sources. SWFI has not confirmed this amount.

Keywords: Bytedance Ltd.