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ByteDance CEO Zhang Yiming. Photo by Bloomberg

ByteDance Investors Discuss TikTok Purchase

Photo: ByteDance CEO Zhang Yiming. Photo by Bloomberg

A small group of ByteDance’s U.S. investors is discussing with the company’s top management the possibility of joining forces to buy a majority stake in TikTok, said people familiar with the situation, as it grows more difficult for the Chinese-owned company to keep control of the fast-growing video app. 

The talks appear to be preliminary, and the idea is just one possible scenario ByteDance is examining as it explores ways of dealing with a possible U.S. ban or forced divestiture of the app, the people said. U.S. government pressure on ByteDance is growing steadily: On Wednesday, the House of Representatives voted to bar all federal employees from loading TikTok onto their government-issued phones. ByteDance founder and CEO Zhang Yiming is open to a sale if that’s what is best for the future of the app, The Information previously reported.

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