Chinese tech company ByteDance said on Monday it was contemplating transferring the headquarters of its TikTok video sharing platform abroad, following a British media report that the unit might relocate to London.
TikTok is under heavy hearth from US President Donald Trump and different American politicians over considerations that it poses a nationwide safety danger, and Microsoft has emerged as a potential purchaser of TikTok’s US operations.
Britain’s Sun newspaper reported on Monday that ByteDance’s founders would soon announce their intention to arrange store for TikTok in London, the place different tech majors comparable to Google and Facebook have a robust presence.
Asked in regards to the report, a spokesperson for ByteDance said a world transfer for TikTok was under consideration.
“ByteDance is committed to being a global company. In light of the current situation, ByteDance has been evaluating the possibility of establishing TikTok’s headquarters outside of the US, to better serve our global users,” the spokesperson said.
Britain’s authorities said earlier on Monday that the placement of TikTok’s headquarters was a call for the company.
“It would be a commercial decision, and I’m not aware that one has been taken,” a spokesman for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.
Any transfer by ByteDance comes at a fraught time in relations between China and the West, exemplified by the battle over use in 5G telecom networks of package made by China’s Huawei.
Britain had been attempting to stroll a tightrope over Huawei till it sided with Washington last month by banning the company from its 5G networks from 2027.
TikTok, whose stars comparable to Zachary King and Charli D’Amelio have gained worldwide recognition for their temporary video performances, has additionally been within the firing line of US President Donald Trump over supposed safety considerations.
Trump nonetheless reversed course on a plan to ban the app after Microsoft emerged as a potential purchaser of TikTok’s US operations and he gave the 2 companies 45 days to give you a deal.
London has additionally clashed with Beijing over the imposition of a brand new safety legislation in Hong Kong however Johnson has said he’s a Sinophile, and the British authorities would welcome one other massive tech funding in Britain significantly because the coronavirus disaster sends the economic system right into a deep recession and potential commerce disruptions loom over Brexit.