Bytedance founder and CEO Zhang Yiming is reconsidering his options of a TikTok sale after new China rules and a possible US ban as soon as September 15.
The new restrictions could hinder a purchase of TikTok by its would-be suitors: Microsoft, Walmart, Oracle, Twitter or possibly a direct rival Triller.
If China goes ahead and restricts exports of artificial intelligence to the US, that could be a dead end for TikTok's operations state-side. AI powers TikTok content to users based on their viewer preferences.
The Chinese tech founder may be driven "more by pride than price," as I was quoted in Bloomberg. He's fiercely independent, and once turned down an offer for Bytedance by a China tech giant.
From the start when he created TikTok in 2016, Zhang wanted a global presence. Now that looks very uncertain. TikTok is already blocked in India.
Interestingly, if a ban does happen in the US, Facebook will benefit. It's been competing with TikTok - and actually should have beat Bytedance to the market with the clever short-video app idea.
Surely Zhang never realized that his mobile app would be caught in the middle of US-China tensions over a tech race.
Silicon Dragon is getting quoted.
See some media clips here:
Bytedance chief reconsiders options
Assessing TikTok buyers
China export ban throws wrench into TikTok sale
Channel News Asia, Money Mind
segment starts at 8:56
Assessing the Rivalry Between US-China Tech Giants
China's electric car maker Xpeng raised $1.5 billion in New York IPO. This comes as the U.S. has considered blocking China company IPOs on US exchanges.
You can read about Xpeng founder He Xiaopeng in Tech Titans of China.
See photo of Xpeng's founder I took at their Silicon Valley office.
And check out this tech chat between
Xpeng vice chairman Brian Gu and leading VC backer Jixun Foo of GGV Capital, at Silicon Dragon Beijing 2019.
Yep, we spot 'em early!
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Sequoia Capital China has led a Series B+ round in Chinese delivery robot Pudu Robotics, with existing shareholders Meituan, Everwin Investment, QC Capital, and Chengbohan Fund. This is the startup's second round of financing in two months.
A new report sent along by China Channel does a deep dive on China's social commerce upstart Pinduoduo in 53 slides.