FT: Record profit for TikTok parent ByteDance

Photo: ANP

ByteDance, the parent company of the video app TikTok, which is especially popular with young people, posted record profits last year. ByteDance insiders reported this to the British business newspaper Financial Times. The company’s sales volume has also increased sharply due to placing more ads on TikTok and its Chinese counterpart, Douyin. TikTok is coming under increasing criticism from governments for potentially spying on behalf of the Chinese government.

According to sources, ByteDance’s operating profit last year was about 25 billion US dollars, nearly 23 billion euros. Sales increased by more than 30 percent to nearly $85 billion. ByteDance is not listed on the stock exchange and therefore does not disclose the results, but investors familiar with the numbers told the Financial Times.

TikTok is also attracting more and more users. Founded in 2012, ByteDance was valued at nearly $300 billion last year. By the way, TikTok itself will still incur losses, in part due to the heavy investments in the app. Douyin is ByteDance’s biggest source of income.

TikTok is also under fire for the amount of information the app collects on its users. Recently, the US Committee on Foreign Investment demanded that ByteDance sell TikTok or ban TikTok in the US. TikTok claims that it is not controlled by any country or government.

More and more governments and parliaments are now banning TikTok on their employees’ work phones and other business devices for fear of data theft and espionage. The Tax and Customs Administration also asked employees to remove apps such as TikTok from their work phones.

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