New twists in the release of Tiktok US. On the one hand, Oracle made a $ 20 billion offer without understanding its real interest in the operation. On the other hand, giant retailer Walmart has teamed up with Microsoft, which was the first to show its interest in the Chinese network.
They wonder if Netflix’s scriptwriting and AI teams might not be behind the Tiktok affair. An intrigue born in the Oval Office, daily and improbable twists and turns and an almost unbearable tension. Latest episodes to date, the entry of American mass distribution giant Walmart alongside Microsoft and a proposal for a total of $ 20 billion from Oracle, half of which in shares.
Now, according to sources familiar with the matter raised by the New York Times, these would be the two most advanced offers to purchase the activities of the Chinese video-sharing network in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. . The interest of so many giants in this race in Tiktok shows at least one thing: the value of the small Chinese video network and the data of its young users. Some observers predict a result within the next 48 hours, while others say the door will remain open to other candidates (the deadline set by Donald Trump to close the sale is November 12).
Oracle, the unlikely $ 20 billion candidate
Oracle, the least likely contender for this acquisition, would be the best in the race, according to the American press. The publisher would benefit from the proximity of its founding chief Larry Ellison and its CEO Safra Katz, particularly the White House and Donald Trump.
But we can especially ask ourselves: What is Oracle doing in this mess? In addition to his closeness to the highest levels of government in the United States, he would have the idea of offering his ERP to teenage tiktok followers, as the very ironic boxing CEO Aaron Levie suggests on Twitter: “smart, this strategy is to get teenagers in at a young age for LES. “It is difficult to see what convergence of Strategy, the historical publisher of databases, analytics and ERP, could have with the Chinese social network. Perhaps it is simply trying to prevent one of its archenemies, Microsoft, from taking advantage of such an opportunity. Still, Oracle would offer $ 20 billion – the end of the estimated range for Tiktok – to complete the acquisition, a large amount just to get Microsoft out of the way.
Oracle’s amazing candidacy adds to the irony. Here Aaron Levie, CEO of Box.
Walmart and Microsoft, interested in e-commerce and marketing
According to CNBC, Walmart had already positioned itself as a candidate for this takeover for a few days, but initially within a consortium set up by Softbank’s COO, which also included Alphabet. But the parent company of Google, which saw interesting potential for their cloud in this acquisition, eventually gave up for fear of not successfully integrating Tiktok. He would also fear competition laws since he already owns Youtube. The consortium was therefore dissolved and Walmart eventually formed an alliance with Microsoft, the details of which are not yet known.
The Redmond giant was the first to take the opportunity to seize Tiktok, which was opened by the President of the United States. After Donald Hua attacked Huawei, in early August he announced the ban on the use of the social network, which he accused of disclosing its users’ data to the Chinese government. After that, the CEO of Tiktok announced that he would rather sell his activities to an American actor than watch them disappear. Microsoft even considered taking over the entire Bytedance subsidiary, an option that China quickly ruled out. The publisher is interested in Tiktok data, but would also finally inherit a worthy entry into the world of mainstream social networks.
Data, still images, still images
Why such enthusiasm from actors who are so different for this youth social network? This type of business does not depend on acquisitions in traditional economies. The most important, if not the only, use is still data. In that case, the future Tiktok buyer would restore tens of millions of contact details of young internet users, consumers and their online behavior. The Chinese network now has more than 90 million users in the US compared to just 11 million in January 2018! And 50 million Americans are active users every day. All over the world the trend is the same. Tiktok had nearly 700 million monthly active users in June, up from 55 million in January 2018 and 507 million in December 2019. This is where the value of these frivolous companies lies.
“E-commerce and advertising” are the two keywords that Walmart used to justify getting into the game with the help of Satya Nadella’s company. For the American, it would be a question of extending a long-standing digital evolution that has enabled him to survive in a damaged trading world. For Michael Priem, founder and CEO of adtech Modern Impact, Walmart has also long tried to build a media group like its best enemy, Gafa Amazon. “You are closely watching what Amazon has achieved with its marketplace and its Amazon Marketing Services (AMS). In 2019 it was almost the 3rd digital media platform. With a good advertising model, Tiktok acquisition would be a quick way for Walmart to develop its own marketplace. “”
But where did Facebook go?
This fight, perhaps nearing its conclusion, is also marked by a deafening absence from Facebook. And for good reason … According to haunting rumors in the American press, including the Wall Street Journal, Mark Zuckerberg, head of the 2.5 billion-user social network, had Donald Trump blown up the idea of banning Tiktok in fall 2019 Blown up The unbridled growth in the number of followers of the Chinese network, especially outside of China, would have panicked the Californian. This would also explain that Facebook, which tried to buy the Chinese in 2016, is not in the game at all this summer. To be continued in the next episode.