Microsoft Corp. said on Sunday that it is ready to continue acquisition talks with TikTok in China, after a meeting between CEO Satya Nadella and President Donald Trump.
“Microsoft fully appreciates the importance of addressing the concerns of the president,” the tech giant said in a blog on Sunday. “It is determined to acquire TikTok subject to a full security assessment and to provide appropriate economic benefits to the United States, including the United States. Treasury.”
said it “wants to go fast” in negotiations with TikTok parent Bytedance, and hopes to make a deal on September 15. “During this process, Microsoft is looking forward to continued dialogue with the United States government, including with the President,” the company said.
Under an agreement, Microsoft would eventually become owner and operator of TikTok business in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Microsoft said other US investors may have a minority stake.
“This new structure would build on the experience that TikTok users currently enjoy, adding world-class security, privacy, and digital security,” Microsoft said. “Microsoft would, inter alia, ensure that all private information of US users of TikTok is transferred to and remains in the United States.”
Microsoft added that the talks are still tentative and may not lead to a deal, and it will not comment further until the talks have “a final outcome”.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday that talks were suspended following Trump’s opposition. Last week, the president threatened to ban the popular video app from operating in the U.S. due to national security concerns.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that TikTok was not the only Chinese software company in the White House reticle, and that Trump would “ take care ” of other companies that pose security risks.
The Trump administration claims that TikTok and other Chinese software companies carry risks because they could send users’ private information to the Chinese government. Critics say banning the emerging TikTok would bring benefits to companies such as Facebook Inc. FB,
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Google – which is already under government antitrust investigation – by removing a major competitor.