Oracle Beats Out Microsoft in Bid to Take Over TikTok’s U.S. Operations
ByteDance, the Chinese company behind the popular app TikTok, rejected an offer Sunday from Microsoft to oversee TikTok’s U.S. operations in favor of Oracle, the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times report. According to WSJ, “the deal is likely not to be structured as an outright sale.” The sell-off was demanded by Trump in an executive order issued in August. Why TikTok rejected Microsoft’s bid is not yet known, though the Times points to Microsoft’s public admission it would insist on controlling the code for TikTok’s English-speaking versions. This would conflict with new regulations from China banning a transfer of TikTok’s A.I. technology without permission from the communist government. It’s unclear whether Oracle would inherit the app’s special algorithms. The Trump administration believes that TikTok’s underlying infrastructure poses a national security concern, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo claiming the app’s Beijing-based engineering team might be vulnerable to Chinese intelligence probes.