Toutiao buys the only Chinese social network big in the U.S. - SupChina

Toutiao buys the only Chinese social network big in the U.S.

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The New York Times reports (paywall) that, “the only Chinese social-media company to build a major network outside China,” will be acquired by “a fast-growing Chinese upstart,” Bytedance, the company behind popular news app Toutiao.

  • is a mobile, video-based social network that around 60 million people — mostly under age 18 in the United States — use to record and share short videos set to music.
  • The company was founded in Shanghai in 2014, and is the only Chinese company to have achieved popular success in social networking in the U.S.
  • “Between $800 million and $1 billion” is the price the Times says Bytedance paid for
  • Bytedance’s flagship service Toutiao uses artificial intelligence to curate news feeds for mobile users, and has around 120 million users in China.
  • Earlier this week, we noted that Bytedance had tried to buy Reddit, the U.S.-based social news aggregation, web content rating, and discussion website.

Jeremy Goldkorn

Jeremy Goldkorn worked in China for 20 years as an editor and entrepreneur. He is editor-in-chief of SupChina, and co-founder of the Sinica Podcast.