Oracle could challenge Microsoft to acquire ultra-popular TikTok app


U.S. investigations of TikTok gather steam.
Who will snap up TikTok?
Photo: Kon Karampelas/Unsplash CC

Oracle, the company co-founded by Steve Jobs’ “rich friend” Larry Ellison, is reportedly in the running to acquire TikTok.

Until now, Microsoft was the leading — and only reported serious — contender in the bidding to acquire the popular video-sharing app.

The Financial Times reported on the interest from Oracle. It notes that Oracle has already held preliminary talks with ByteDance, the company behind TikTok. These talks concerned buying TikTok’s operations in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Oracle may be working with investors including General Atlantic and Sequoia Capital, which already own a small stake in ByteDance.

Furthermore, the FT writes that:

“Mr Ellison, one of the world’s richest people, is one of the few people in Silicon Valley who has openly supported Mr Trump. In February, the 76-year-old billionaire entrepreneur held a fundraiser for the US president at his estate in Coachella Valley, California.”

It’s not clear that supporting Trump would have any bearing on a company’s chances of acquiring TikTok. But it may not hurt. Trump’s executive order, targeting TikTok, is what is currently causing a lot of the furor about the app being sold to a U.S. buyer. If this does not happen by September 15, TikTok could be banned in the U.S. for apparent security reasons.

Apple was briefly rumored to be interested in acquiring TikTok. However, those rumors were rapidly shot down by the Cupertino tech giant.

TikTok ranked as the No. 1 app on both iOS and the Google Play app stores in July. In the first quarter of 2020, TikTok registered the best three months of any app ever when it comes to downloads.