TikTok has reportedly chosen a bidder for the sale of its US branch – as White House trade adviser Peter Navarro has warned the US will target more applications made in China.
Sources close to the deal told CNBC on Monday that TikTok may announce the sale of the popular video app as early as tomorrow.
Microsoft, in partnership with Walmart, and Oracle are considered the main candidates for the sale.
Earlier this month, President Donald Trump threatened to ban TikTok in the United States if it was not sold to an American buyer within 45 days in an attempt to separate the social media newcomer from his Chinese parent company ByteDance.
Navarro, one of Trump’s trade advisers, said the United States has more apps made in China after TikTok and WeChat.
TikTok has reportedly chosen a bidder for the sale of its US branch and the deal could be announced as early as tomorrow, according to a source.
“It is essential that this country does not use applications that are made in China or that can take our data and go to servers in China. This data will be used to monitor, monitor and track you, ”Navarro told Fox News’ Mornings with Maria.
“This is the political stance behind why we sued TikTok and WeChat and there will be more because China… is basically trying to acquire technology and influence. “
Despite reports that TikTok has now picked a bidder, the deal could potentially be derailed by the Chinese government after new rules were released Friday adding “civilian use” to a list of export-restricted technologies.
The new regulations could make it more difficult for Bytedance to sell the very popular video app.
Bytedance said the regulations now mean they had to get a license from the Chinese government before they could sell to a US company.
The company said it will “strictly adhere” to China’s technology law and its list of restrictions “in dealing with matters related to the import and export of technology.”
The move marked the first time that China has adjusted its list of technologies subject to export bans or restrictions since 2008 by adding 23 new items.
It comes after TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer left last week, just days after the company filed a lawsuit to challenge the US government crackdown.
TikTok argued in the lawsuit that Trump’s executive order was an abuse of international emergency economic powers law because the platform is not “an unusual and extraordinary threat.”
White House Trade Advisor Peter Navarro on Monday warned the United States would target more Chinese-made apps after TikTok and WeChat
The Trump administration has argued that TikTok is a potential national security risk due to the large amount of private data the app compiles on U.S. consumers. TikTok claims around 100 million monthly active users in the United States.
Walmart last week became the latest company to want a piece of TikTok after making a joint bid with Microsoft.
Microsoft and Walmart are already business partners. Microsoft provides cloud computing services that help manage retailer stores and online purchases. The two companies signed a 5-year partnership in 2018, allowing them to join forces against a common rival: the online shopping giant Amazon.
Walmart said in a statement that a deal with Microsoft and TikTok could help it grow its advertising business and reach more buyers.
Other tech companies such as Oracle are also said to be interested in a possible acquisition.
Although ByteDance did not disclose its asking price for TikTok, the Wall Street Journal reported last week that it was looking for around $ 30 billion for TikTok’s U.S. operations.
The Journal reported that bidders so far have been unwilling to meet this price.
According to a national Reuters / Ipsos poll released on Monday, 40% of Americans support Trump’s threat to ban the video-sharing app if it is not sold to a US buyer.
The poll, which surveyed 1,349 adults across the United States, found that 40% supported Trump’s recent executive order forcing ByteDance to sell its TikTok operations by September 15.
Thirty percent of respondents said they opposed the move, while another 30 percent said they didn’t know anyway.