Suitors for a sale of TikTok operations in the US and other markets have until September 20th before a Trump Administration executive order kicks in, banning the video platform from transactions in the US, but a sale could be announced “in the coming days,” according to “people familiar with the matter” as reported by CNBC. Microsoft, who is in talks to acquire the operations, has said it will make an announcement by September 15th. TikTok hasn’t yet decided on a buyer, the report says, nothing that the company is still discussing bids from Microsoft, Oracle, and “a third U.S. company.”
Yesterday, Kevin Mayer, the head of TikTok’s US business, announced his resignation after news leaked out. He was slated to announce his leaving along with an announcement of the sale “next week,” the report says, but pushed it up due to the leaks.
A price for the operations hasn’t been decided either, although speculation is that it will land in the $20-30 billion range.
Update – the CNBC segment posted online has a bit more. Mainly focused on the circumstances of Kevin Mayer’s departure, Julia Boorstin notes at the end that a sale, which could come “in the next 48 hours or so,” will likely be to Oracle or Microsoft, and “more likely Microsoft.”
BREAKING: TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer quit after being excluded from deal talks between the company and Microsoft & Oracle, a source tells @JBoorstin. Multiple sources also tell CNBC that Mayer's exit indicates that a deal—likely a sale to Microsoft—could come in the next 48 hours. pic.twitter.com/TOcSrn8Xd8
— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) August 27, 2020
Could be a busy weekend!
Update #2 – TheWrap is reporting that it’s Oracle in the lead:
Oracle, the technology giant led by Larry Ellison, has taken the lead position to acquire the Chinese-owned social app TikTok for a proposed deal of $20 billion in cash and stock, TheWrap has learned.
The proposed deal would comprise $10 billion in cash, $10 billion in Oracle stock, and 50% of annual TikTok profit to flow back to TikTok’s China-based parent company, ByteDance, for two years, according to one individual with knowledge of the deal.
Whatever the outcome, we should soon find out.