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ByteDance Said to Offer to Sell TikTok’s U.S. Operations

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The Trump administration has said the video app poses security concerns because of its Chinese ownership.

President Trump has said that he was considering various options for the popular video app TikTok, including banning it. President Trump has said that he was considering various options for the popular video app TikTok, including banning it.Credit…Martin Bureau/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images Raymond Zhong

  • Aug. 1, 2020, 10:40 a.m. ET

ByteDance, the Chinese internet giant that owns TikTok, has agreed to sell the American operations of the popular video app as a way to save its business from being banned by the Trump administration, a person with knowledge of the matter said on Saturday.

President Trump had told reporters on Friday that he was considering various options for TikTok, including banning it. White House officials have said the app may pose a national security threat because of its Chinese ownership.

ByteDance’s offer to divest TikTok’s American operations was reported earlier by Reuters.

It was not clear whether the Trump administration would accept the divestment as a sufficient response to its concerns. Microsoft and other companies have been in talks to buy TikTok, but a deal has not yet been reached, according to the person with knowledge of the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the discussions are confidential.

TikTok has offices and users around the globe. The proposed divestment would not necessarily affect the company’s operations outside the United States, the person added.

This is a developing news story. Check back for updates.

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