Home >Companies >News >TikTok India: ByteDance may sell operations to InMobi's Glance, says report

China's ByteDance Ltd. has started exploring a sale of the Indian operations of TikTok to rival unicorn Glance, news agency Bloomberg reported. Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp initiated the discussions, said people familiar with the matter, according to Bloomberg. This move came after the Indian authorities indicated last month that the ban on TikTok app was permanent.

The central government banned thousand of Chinese applications including TikTok last year, threat to national security and sovereignty. The ban was imposed under section 69A of the Information Technology Act. The restirction on Chinese applications came amid continuing tensions on the border between India and China. In January, Bytedance announced to shut its India business and cut over 2,000 employees over the uncertainty in making a comeback. TikTok, before it was banned in India — its biggest market, had hit over 200 million users

Roposo, Glance’s short video sharing platform, has witnessed a massive growth after TikTok ban. The 20-month-old has gained prominence in the short video market and has 30 million monthly active users. Bengaluru-headquartered app in December said it had raised $145 million by Google Inc. and billionaire Peter Thiel’s Mithril Capital. Started by Harvard Business School alum Naveen Tewari, Glance Digital Experience is a mobile content platform. He is the founder of InMobi, India’s first unicorn.

SoftBank is a backer of Glance’s parent InMobi Pte as well as TikTok’s Chinese parent, ByteDance. The deal will need a final seal of approval from Indian government. China’s new rules around export of technology make the negotiations even more intricate, and any sale of TikTok could need approval from Chinese authorities, Bloomberg reported.

According to the report, the Indian government will insist that user data and technology of TikTok stay within its borders if the talks progress.

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