TikTok’s parent company Bytedance more than doubled its revenue to $34.3 billion last year, the Wall Street Journal reported, highlighting the Beijing-based company’s rapid growth that has made it the most valuable startup in the world.
According to the WSJ, the company shared highlights of its 2020 financial performance with its employees in an internal memo which notes that its total revenue grew 111% compared to the previous year.
The company incurred a $2.1 billion operating loss, which was reportedly due to expenses from share-based compensation given to employees.
By the end of December, the company had about 1.9 billion monthly active users across all its platforms, the memo added, without breaking out individual numbers for TikTok or its Chinese version Douyin.
As previously reported, the company is considering plans to go public with a listing either in New York or Hong Kong.
$140 billion. That’s the amount ByteDance was valued at in its last fundraising round, making it the world’s most valuable startup. However, secondary market transactions have reportedly placed a higher valuation of $250 billion on the company.
Reports of ByteDance wanting to take some of its main businesses—including Douyin—public first emerged in April. But those early efforts appeared to hit a snag as the company reportedly failed to come up with a business structure that would please both Beijing and Washington. The company was purportedly trying to separate Douyin’s China-based operations from TikTok’s global operations due to an executive order issued by former U.S. President Donald Trump that attempted to force ByteDance to sell TikTok’s U.S. business. Earlier this month, President Joe Biden rescinded that order, however, the company’s U.S. operations still face a Treasury Department-led review along with a Biden administration investigation of its handling of user data.
Last month, ByteDance’s co-founder Zhang Yiming announced he will step down as the CEO of the company at the end of this year. Zhang will be replaced by the company’s human resource chief and Zhang’s college classmate Liang Rubo. While announcing his exit in an internal memo Zhang acknowledged that he lacked the skills to be an ideal manager. He wrote “I’m more interested in analyzing organizational and market principles and leveraging these theories to further reduce management work, rather than actually managing people. Similarly, I’m not very social, preferring solitary activities like being online, reading, listening to music, and daydreaming about what may be possible.”
TikTok Owner ByteDance’s Annual Revenue Jumps to $34.3 Billion (Wall Street Journal)