TikTok to relocate headquarters to London following approval by UK ministers
ByteDance Ltd, the parent company of TikTok, is in the process of relocating its headquarters from Beijing to London, following a deal that was approved by UK ministers.
A report by Reuters also noted that the Chinese company’s founders will soon officially announce their intention to set up an office in London.
This move may likely upset President Donald Trump, who had announced plans to ban TikTok in the United States of America. The US considers the UK as a reliable ally.
Nairametrics had reported about 2 weeks ago that the Beijing-based video-sharing social networking firm, had been in discussions with the British Government over the relocation of its headquarters to London. The move has been perceived by analysts/observers seen as part of ByteDance’s strategy to distance itself from its Chinese ownership.
The technology firm has been under heavy scrutiny and criticism from the US Government over suspicions that China could be forcing it to turn over data. Earlier this year, the company was even labeled a potential counterintelligence threat by senior members of the US congress.
ByteDance recently came under intense pressure from the White House and US lawmakers to sell off TikTok’s US operations. It now has a 45-day deadline to negotiate with Microsoft over such a deal.
ByteDance Ltd is looking at all the available options to resolve its dispute with the American Government. In the meantime, Chief Executive Officer, Zhang Yiming, said no decision has been taken regarding the proposed sale of its US operations to Microsoft Corp.
The relocation of its headquarters to London might come as a surprise considering the current tension/dispute between the technology firm and the United States Government, who are close allies of the UK.
It can be recalled that amid tensions between China and some Western Countries and in solidarity with the United States, the British Government recently banned Chinese Telecom firm, Huawei’s 5G networks in the country. According to the UK Government, Huawei’s products posed a threat to the security of the UK’s infrastructure.