Tuesday 2 June, 2020

TikTok spokesman claims it is not a Chinese but a Cayman company

TikTok is not a Chinese-owned company because its parent company is incorporated in the Cayman Islands, said a spokesman for the company to The New York Times.

The spokesman for the short video social network did not indicate how many employees associated with TikTok’s parent company ByteDance are located in Cayman, but this has been one of a series of moves that TikTok has taken to distance itself from China.

TikTok has also appointed top Disney streaming executive Kevin Mayer as its new CEO, responsible for driving global expansion efforts, replacing Alex Zhu, the mastermind of its success. Mayer will also become the Chief Operating Officer of TikTok’s parent company ByteDance, assuming both roles from June 1. Zhu will focus on ByteDance product and strategy after the appointment.

Many say that Mayer’s hiring comes in response to American politicians' concern that TikTok’s ties to China pose a national security threat. The app has been described as a "potential counterintelligence threat" and is also facing a national security review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) into ByteDance’s acquisition of the short video app Musical.ly in 2017, which was co-founded by Zhu and paved the way for TikTok’s US success. 

In April, the video-sharing network reached the milestone of 2 billion downloads globally.

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