The creator of TikTok’s Chinese owner said on Thursday that he will stand down as CEO to focus on longer-term efforts, a move that comes amid speculation that the Biden administration may compel the sale of TikTok’s US branch.
Liang Rubo, a co-founder, will follow Zhang Yiming as CEO of ByteDance Ltd., according to Zhang Yiming. Zhang stated that quitting day-to-day management will allow him to “have a stronger effect on longer-term projects,” although he did not elaborate on his next position.
ByteDance is waiting to see if former President Donald Trump’s efforts to compel the sale of TikTok’s US business would be revived by the Biden administration. Trump said that the business posed a security risk because it accumulated much too much personal data on millions of Americans.
Regulators are also ratcheting up antitrust enforcement against Chinese e-commerce behemoths and other internet firms, but there is no sign that ByteDance has been singled out.
ByteDance was created by Zhang in 2012. Douyin, the company’s first short-video platform, was established in 2016. The next year, TikTok was introduced outside of China. TikTok had 700 million users worldwide last year, according to the business.
ByteDance, based in Beijing, claims to be active in 150 markets and employs over 60,000 people.
According to the Trump administration’s plan, ByteDance would have to sell TikTok’s US subsidiary to software company Oracle and retailer Walmart. The suspension was put in place by the Biden administration, which took office in January, while it looked into potential security vulnerabilities presented by Chinese Internet businesses.`