FILE PHOTO: This picture taken on 6 January 2020 shows a Tiktok logo on a smartphone. REUTERS / Dado Ruvic / Illustration / File Photo
(Reuters) – Tiktok has been in discussions with the UK government to locate its headquarters in London for the past few months, a source familiar with the matter said, as part of a strategy to distance itself from its Chinese ownership.
The source said that London is one of the many locations the company is considering, but no decision has been taken.
It was not immediately clear what other locations are under consideration. But this year it has been aggressively hired in California, including Kevin Mayer, former Walt Disney co-executive, to be the chief executive of Tickcock. He is based in the United States.
It is suspected that China may force the company to turn over user data. TikTok is owned by China-based ByteDance.
The source said the company has been largely focused on its issues in the United States over the past few weeks, but has not dismissed London as a potential location for its new headquarters. The source said that Tiktuk hopes to increase the size of its workforce in London and other key locations outside China over the next several years.
The Sunday Times reports bit.ly/2ZHlI1Z, which has been broken by negotiations with the UK government to open a global headquarters in the UK.
A source said that Ticketok was in discussions with the UK government.
TikTok declined to comment.
Reporting by Echo Wang in New York; Editing by Jonathan Otis