TikTok is reportedly near an agreement to sell its Canadian, U.S., Australian and New Zealand operations, as a deal could be announced in the coming days.
A new report from CNBC reveals that Walmart has confirmed that it’s teaming up with Microsoft for a potential acquisition. Oracle is another potential buyer, but reports indicate that it’s more likely for Microsoft to be the one to finalize a deal.
The deal is expected to range between $20 billion to $30 billion USD (approximately $26 billion to $39 billion CAD). An official price has not yet been decided, but reports indicate that the sale could be finalized in 48 hours.
A spokesperson for Walmart told CNBC that the company is “confident that a Walmart and Microsoft partnership would meet both the expectations of U.S. TikTok users while satisfying the concerns of U.S. government regulators.”
Walmart also notes that a potential relationship with TikTok in partnership with Microsoft will provide it with an important way to grow its third-party marketplace and advertising businesses.
It’s worth mentioning that this isn’t the first time Microsoft and Walmart have teamed up. Two years ago, Walmart announced that it was launching a five-year cloud partnership with the tech giant.
This comes as the Financial Times broke the news that TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer is quitting. His departure from the company was reportedly going to be announced alongside the sale agreement next week, but sources say he pushed up the news.
Reports suggest that Mayer’s departure indicates that the U.S. government has won its battle against TikTok, as a sale is now almost certain to happen soon.
On August 6th, President Trump signed an executive order banning U.S. business with TikTok. The order essentially aims to force TikTok to sell its U.S. operations or face a ban. The rule was initially meant to take effect in mid-September but has since been extended to November 12th.
It appears that TikTok will be able to avoid the ban with an official announcement expected in the next few days. However, it’s also worth noting that TikTok is currently suing the Trump administration.
The company stated that “the Administration ignored our extensive efforts to address its concerns, which we conducted fully and in good faith even as we disagreed with the concerns themselves.”
TikTok’s argues in the lawsuit that the order violates due process protections and does not back up its claim that TikTok is a national security threat.