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Who could buy TikTok?

Potential buyers for TikTok must navigate a complex landscape of regulatory scrutiny and geopolitical tensions. With President Biden’s legislation threatening a ban on TikTok unless it’s sold by its Chinese parent company, ByteDance, potential suitors must act swiftly and strategically.

Established Tech Giants Under Scrutiny: Analysts believe that established tech giants like Meta (formerly Facebook), Google, and Amazon are unlikely candidates due to existing antitrust challenges. These companies face significant regulatory scrutiny, making a TikTok acquisition a risky proposition.

Potential Suitors with Less Antitrust Baggage: Companies like Microsoft, Oracle, Verizon, and AT&T may be viewed more favorably by regulators. Microsoft, in particular, has shown interest in TikTok in the past and has the financial resources to pursue such an acquisition. Additionally, Microsoft’s ownership of LinkedIn positions it well to expand its social media presence through TikTok.

Opportunities for Past Suitors: Microsoft and Walmart were among the contenders to buy TikTok in 2020, with discussions ultimately leading to TikTok partnering with Oracle on Project Texas to address national security concerns. With TikTok’s future uncertain once again, past suitors may have another opportunity to revisit acquisition talks.

Oracle’s Potential Role: As a participant in Project Texas and a past contender for TikTok ownership, Oracle remains a potential player in the acquisition. Its expertise in data management and security could make it an attractive partner or buyer for TikTok.

In the rapidly evolving landscape of social media and regulatory oversight, the fate of TikTok hangs in the balance. Potential buyers must carefully navigate legal, regulatory, and geopolitical challenges to secure ownership of this coveted platform.

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