ByteDance declined to remark.
Mr. Zhang of ByteDance believed early on that solely by having a world presence may his firm compete on the extent of Google, Facebook or Amazon. As ByteDance grew, he inspired staff to undertake what he known as a “Martian” perspective on enterprise. He needed them to think about ByteDance not as a Chinese firm gone international, however as an inherently planetwide enterprise, freed from nationwide beginning factors or biases.
Growing wariness towards China’s technological advances has made that vision look harder to sustain, although. Never earlier than has the United States clamped down on a Chinese firm with as a lot cultural cachet as ByteDance. India banned TikTok in June, additionally on nationwide safety grounds. More European governments are shying away from utilizing Chinese telecommunications gear, petrified of espionage.
ByteDance’s rivals in China started discovering way back how arduous abroad enlargement could possibly be.
The web large Tencent is a world heavy hitter in video video games via its holdings of builders together with Epic Games and Riot Games. It has largely failed, nonetheless, to export its best-known product: WeChat, the corporate’s Swiss Army knife of an app, which the Trump administration can be threatening to curb. India recently banned the cellular model of the shooter sport PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, which Tencent distributes within the nation.
China’s different web behemoth, the e-commerce large Alibaba, nonetheless makes greater than 90 p.c of its income at dwelling regardless of years of funding in abroad marketplaces. Two of China’s latest tech titans — the shopping site Pinduoduo and the food delivery platform Meituan — are centered closely on the home market.
“Tencent’s businesses are diversified with multiple revenue streams that we expect to generate sustained growth in the years ahead,” the corporate mentioned in an emailed assertion. “The China market continues to offer tremendous opportunities,” the assertion mentioned, including that the corporate would proceed to discover abroad enlargement.
Alibaba declined to remark.
ByteDance is hardly a minnow in China. There, TikTok’s sibling app, Douyin, is beloved by advertisers and helps carry the Communist Party’s propaganda messages. ByteDance now accounts for round one-fifth of internet advertising income in China, a bigger share than Tencent and the search engine Baidu, in response to the analysis agency Bernstein. The nation’s on-line advert market was value $95 billion last year, in response to iResearch.