TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer has resigned from his post after taking on the role in May this year. Multiple media reports including Financial Times, The New York Times and Bloomberg said, adding that GM of TikTok, Vanessa Pappas, will lead the company in the interim. This comes as TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, has been under pressure by US President Donald Trump to sell its US operations.
Quoting its sources, FT and NYT said the political environment has “sharply changed” in recent weeks and that he has done “significant reflection” on the requirements for the corporate structural changes, and what this means for the global role he took on. While a resolution is expected to be reached “very soon”, Mayer said he has decided to leave the company. He explained that the role he signed up for “will look very different” as a result of the government pressuring ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, to sell off its US business.
In a statement to Marketing, TikTok's spokesperson said: "We appreciate that the political dynamics of the last few months have significantly changed what the scope of Mayer's role would be going forward, and fully respect his decision. We thank him for his time at the company and wish him well."
In addition to his role as TikTok CEO, Mayer (pictured) was also the COO of ByteDance. In his dual role, Mayer was tasked to lead music, gaming, Indian social networking service Helo, emerging businesses, and lead TikTok as it continues to build its global community of creators, users, and brands. Prior to this, he was the chairman of Direct-to-Consumer and International at Disney. During his time there, Mayer oversaw the development and rollout of Disney+, the company's flagship streaming service.
Meanwhile, Microsoft is actively pushing ahead in its discussions to purchase TikTok in the US, following a conversation between CEO Satya Nadella and Trump. The company said in a blog post that together with ByteDance, TikTok's parent company, both parties have provided notice of their intent to explore a preliminary proposal that would involve a purchase of the TikTok service in the US, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Following Microsoft's announcement, Twitter and Oracle have also thrown their hats into the ring, according to media outlets including FT and Reuters.
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