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If Microsoft buys TikTok, it could be hailed as a ‘hero’ for saving the app as President Trump threatens to ban it. Here’s why analysts say a deal might make sense. (MSFT)


If Microsoft buys TikTok, it could be hailed as a ‘hero’ for saving the app as President Trump threatens to ban it. Here’s why analysts say a deal might make sense. (MSFT)

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Getty Images This story is available exclusively to Business Insider subscribers. Become an Insider and start reading now. Microsoft is reportedly in talks to buy the US operations of viral video app TikTok, even as President Donald Trump threatens to ban the app over its China ties.TikTok seems to have little to…

If Microsoft buys TikTok, it could be hailed as a ‘hero’ for saving the app as President Trump threatens to ban it. Here’s why analysts say a deal might make sense. (MSFT)

satya nadellasatya nadella Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

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  • Microsoft is reportedly in talks to desire the US operations of viral video app TikTok, at the same time as President Donald Trump threatens to ban the app over its China ties.
  • TikTok seems to possess puny to assemble with Microsoft’s unusual enterprise, which largely focuses on cloud computing and enterprise tool.
  • Nevertheless, some analysts dispute, purchasing for TikTok might well well furthermore desire Microsoft accolades from the app’s hundreds and hundreds of users who are unnerved about Trump’s possibility of a ban: “Microsoft has the chance to be the hero right here.”
  • Microsoft will probably be taking this as an opportunistic switch to attach at bay into the patron market and set a foothold in mainstream social media.
  • On the diversified hand, some analysts dispute TikTok might well well furthermore trusty be too outlandish a fit to assemble sense for Microsoft.
  • Are you a Microsoft employee? Contact this reporter through encrypted messaging app Signal ( 1-425-344-8242) or email (
  • Discuss over with Industry Insider’s homepage for further experiences.

Microsoft is in talks with TikTok over a probably acquisition of the viral video app’s US operations, in step with multiple reports, as President Donald Trump plans to provide an explanation for TikTok’s China-based mostly fully mostly guardian company, ByteDance, to sell.

Microsoft and TikTok declined to touch upon these reports, and it is aloof unclear how evolved any talks might well well be, but the guidelines got right here as a surprise to many: For all of TikTok’s huge reputation, it has puny to assemble with Microsoft’s unusual enterprise – a enterprise that largely focuses on enterprise tool, cloud computing, and serving working specialists.

TikTok will probably be worth better than $30 billion, The Files reported — better than Microsoft’s largest-ever acquisition to date, when it paid $26.2 billion for LinkedIn in 2016.

Analysts who spoke to Industry Insider agreed the acquisition seems “out of character” for Microsoft, but acknowledged the acquisition will probably be an opportunistic play for Microsoft to bolster its consumer enterprise and fabricate favor amongst youthful generations.

Trump has acknowledged that he’s brooding about banning the app in the US over its China ties. That has TikTok’s many hundreds and hundreds of mostly-youthful users unnerved for the lengthy plod of their licensed app. If Microsoft swoops in to desire TikTok, says Futurum Research analyst Daniel Newman, it’ll be hailed as a savior by these users.

“The rising generations are very linked to this platform,” Newman acknowledged. “Microsoft has the chance to be the hero right here.” It is miles in general a “future-proofing” technique for Microsoft to desire over the next expertise of customers.

Calm, it may perchance well perchance well well be a counterintuitive switch for Microsoft, which has spent the last plenty of years below CEO Satya Nadella doubling down on cloud computing, at the same time because it unwinds consumer companies indulge in Groove Song, the Nokia smartphone unit, and most no longer too lengthy prior to now, the Mixer video game streaming provider.

Nevertheless analysts argue that shopping a hot app indulge in TikTok would reinvigorate its enchantment to patrons, namely in the realm of social networking.

“It be a puny bit out of left area, but for Microsoft, the one rental where they neglected the boat used to be social media,” Wedbush Securities analyst Dan Ives acknowledged. “The enterprise enterprise is restful the crown jewel, but on the they desire to switch again to the whiteboard on consumer technique over the next 5 to 10 years.”

Wedbush Securities analyst Dan Ives says that while Microsoft’s $26.2 billion LinkedIn acquisition has been a hit, furthermore it is far largely obsessed on skilled users. The time will probably be upright for Microsoft to take a eye at its hand at extra consumer-focused social media.

Buying TikTok might well well be an opportunistic skill assemble to that, Ives acknowledged. Rising tensions between the Trump administration and China possess presented a likelihood for Microsoft when it involves TikTok, Ives acknowledged. Below current situations, a booming, rising app indulge in TikTok would possess puny impetus to peek for a buyer — but Ives says that TikTok’s obvious desire to glean out of the approach of escalating US-China tensions adjustments the equation. 

Furthermore, as Newman functions out, Microsoft has confirmed with LinkedIn that it is racy and in a position to let its subsidiaries plod independently, which is an encouraging signal that it would no longer glean in the approach of TikTok’s unusual success. 

Calm, no longer all americans is jubilant the acquisition would assemble sense.

“I might well well be taken aback [the buyer] ends up being Microsoft,” Moor Insights and Programs predominant analyst Patrick Moorhead acknowledged. “It doesn’t in actual fact feel to me that is an alignment with Satya’s mission and imaginative and prescient of the corporate, which is enterprise and consumer productivity. It seems out of character.”

Nevertheless, Moorhead acknowledged, TikTok also doesn’t seem to possess alternative alternatives when it involves Sizable Tech investors who might well well furthermore manage to pay for to desire it. Google and Facebook, Moorhead acknowledged, possess too great possession of advertising bucks and platforms, and are below too great authorities scrutiny, and a TikTok acquisition would also seem out of character for Amazon.

“I glean the patron attitude,” Inventive Programs’ Carolina Milanesi acknowledged, pointing to Microsoft’s recent efforts to join patrons to its merchandise. “Nevertheless social media is trusty a giant number.”

No longer having a social media platform is one in all the explanations, Milanesi acknowledged, that Microsoft managed to e book particular of testifying at a congressional antitrust listening to alongside Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and Google. Antitrust specialists acknowledged Microsoft used to be absent probably since the corporate is concentrated mostly on enterprise customers, helping it cruise below the radar when it involves the scrutiny that is followed its competitors for the past plenty of years. 

Bought a tip? Contact this reporter through email at, message her on Twitter @ashannstew, or ship her a trusty message thru Signal at 425-344-8242.

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