Microsoft’s failed deal with the social media app TikTok last year was the “strangest thing I’ve ever worked on,” CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement on Monday.
Microsoft had started talks on the proposed acquisition in August 2020, but the transaction collapsed in September.
TikTok was ordered by then-U.S. President Donald Trump to separate its U.S. version from its Chinese parent, ByteDance, because of national security concerns about the collection of U.S. users’ data. Trump’s divestment efforts ended with his presidential term in January, and no potential suitor has pushed to acquire TikTok since.
Speaking at the Code Conference in California, Nadella said he wanted to bring Microsoft’s security, child safety and cloud expertise to TikTok.
According to Nadella, what attracted ByteDance CEO Zhang Yiming to Microsoft was the tech giant’s services, which focused on moderating content and keeping children safe, and were developed through products like Xbox video game tools and the social network LinkedIn.
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