Mumbai : TikTok may return to India again. The Japanese company Softbank is preparing to buy TikTok’s Indian assets. According to sources, they are also looking for an Indian partner and are also in talks with Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel.
Significantly, in July, the Indian government banned 58 Chinese apps, including TikTok, citing national security and privacy. It was feared that the company was sharing users’ data with the Chinese government. TikTok is banned in the US as well and many tech companies are trying to buy its business there too.
Japanese group SoftBank already has a stake in TikTok’s Chinese parent company Bytedance. According to Bloomberg, it has started efforts to buy TikTok’s Indian business and is also in talks for the partnership with Reliance Jio Infocomm and Bharti Airtel. However, Jio and Airtel have refused to comment on this. SoftBank is also exploring other options.
Japanese company SoftBank has invested in many startups like Ola Cabs, Snapdeal, Oyo Rooms in India. Earlier in August, such a discussion also started that Reliance could buy Ticketcock’s Indian business.
At the time of the ban, 30 percent of TikTok users were Indians and about 10 percent of its revenue was from India. By April 2020, TikTok’s 2 billion downloads were made from the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. Of these, about 30.3 percent or 61.1 crore downloads were from India.
According to mobile intelligence firm Sensor Tower, TikTok’s download was higher in India than in China. TikTok’s download in China is only 19.66 crore, which is just 9.7 percent of its total download.