ByteDance, which owns short video app TikTok and news aggregator Jinri Toutiao is planning an initial public offering this year or next, Wall Street Journal reported Saturday, citing people familiar with the matter. However, when and where this will begin is still unknown.
Some investors have however been transferring their stakes to others at a price which places the company’s value between USD 60 billion and USD 66 billion despite ByteDance being valued at USD 75 billion after its latest funding round, says a report by Chinese business news site Allweather TMT, citing unnamed sources.
When contacted by KrAsia on Monday, ByteDance would neither confirm nor deny the IPO plan nor would it comment on the report involving its shares being transferred at a discount of its valuation.
ByteDance, which is now the most valuable startup based on this USD 75 billion valuation, competes directly with China’s established tech giants including Tencent in the social media space and Baidu in the Internet search area. Baidu, considered one of China’s major internet companies, had a market capitalization of just under USD 41 billion after the market closed on Friday. Tencent, by contrast, is worth well over USD 400 billion.
ByteDance has set a revenue target of RMB 100 billion (USD 14.8 billion) for this year and although it is itself still a startup, it has invested in various companies across industries including game publishers and a celebrity management agency.