Billionaire real estate mogul organizing 'people's bid' to buy TikTok

Date:

Billionaire Frank McCourt is organizing a consortium of investors to purchase TikTok from its China-based parent company, ByteDance, as the social media platform faces a potential ban in the U.S. due to national security concerns if it isn’t divested.

McCourt, executive chairman of McCourt Global and founder of Project Liberty, announced that Project Liberty is organizing a “people’s bid” to buy TikTok that would aim to put people and data empowerment at the forefront of the video app’s design and purpose. Project Liberty is working on the bid with Guggenheim Securities and law firm Kirkland & Ellis, as well as technologists and academics.

The group is looking to “return control and value back into the hands of individuals and provide Americans with a meaningful voice, choice, and stake in the future of the web.” They’ve proposed migrating TikTok to a digital open-source platform.

“We can, and must, do more to safeguard the health and well-being of our children, families, democracy and society,” McCourt said in a statement. “We see this potential acquisition as an incredible opportunity to catalyze an alternative to the current tech model that has colonized the internet.”

TIKTOK SUES TO BLOCK US LAW REQUIRING SALE TO NON-CHINESE COMPANY

“By bringing leading academics, technologists, behavioral scientists, psychologists and economic experts together with community partners, parents and citizens, we believe we can preserve — and enhance — the TikTok experience by giving individuals and creators on the platform the value and control they deserve regarding who has access to their data and how it is used,” he added.

The acquisition push comes after a bipartisan law signed by President Biden last month requires that TikTok be divested from ByteDance by mid-January, or it will be banned in the U.S. due to national security and data privacy concerns.

TIKTOK CEO EXPECTS TO DEFEAT US BAN: ‘WE AREN’T GOING ANYWHERE’

TikTok bill on Capitol Hill

TikTok filed a lawsuit against the law, arguing it is unconstitutional, and ByteDance has signaled that it has no intention of divesting the social media platform to U.S. owners.

The Chinese government has indicated it has no plans to allow ByteDance to sell TikTok to U.S. owners to allow it to continue to operate. TikTok’s lawsuit notes that the “Chinese government has made clear that it would not permit a divestment of the recommendation engine that is a key to the success of TikTok in the United States.”

TIKTOK’S FORCED SALE FROM CHINA WILL BE ‘MOST SIGNIFICANT’ NATIONAL SECURITY STEP, SAYS FCC COMMISSIONER

TikTok CEO testifies before Congress

“Like the United States, China regulates the export of certain technologies originating there. China’s export control rules over ‘information processing technologies’ such as ‘personal interactive data algorithms.’ China’s official news agency has reported that under these rules, any sale of recommendation algorithms developed by engineers employed by ByteDance subsidiaries in China, including for TikTok, would require a government license,” the filing states.

Several other would-be investors have expressed an interest in bidding for TikTok’s U.S. operations, despite opposition from China’s government and uncertainty over whether it and ByteDance would consider a formal acquisition offer.

Former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, as well as Kevin O’Leary, O’Leary Ventures chairman and star of the TV show “Shark Tank,” have said they’re interested in forming a group that would bid to acquire TikTok.

Reuters contributed to this report.

Read the full article here

spot_img

Share post:

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.

Popular

More like this
Related

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin resumes duty after undergoing procedure

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin underwent a medical procedure at...

US Army vessels supporting Gaza aid break free, beach on Israeli coast

Four U.S. Army vessels supporting the maritime humanitarian aid...

WHO Fails To Get Agreement On The Text Of The Pandemic Treaty But It Is Not Over Yet

This article was originally published by Rhoda Wilson at...

Former President Obama surprises volunteers at Memorial Day event

Veterans of Foreign War Post 609 typically draws in...