The Chinese company had an estimated operating profit of below $4 billion the prior year, according to Bloomberg. Based in Beijing, ByteDance is valued at roughly $180 billion, and TikTok is in the planning stages of an initial public offering (IPO) in Hong Kong.
Despite the financial success of the Chinese startup, a TikTok ban in India triggered wide-scale layoffs in the country, The Economic Times reported. Some 58 additional Chinese apps were also banned by India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.
“It is deeply regretful that after supporting our 2000+ employees in India for more than half a year, we have no choice but to scale back the size of our workforce,” a TikTok spokesperson said in a statement to CNN.
Founded by Zhang Yiming in 2012, ByteDance built TikTok into a social media hit across the globe, with over 100 million users just in the U.S., Bloomberg reported. Its sales have aligned with those of giant legacy brands like Nike and Coca-Cola.
In November, ByteDance was China’s second-biggest platform by digital advertising dollars, closing in on Alibaba’s lead and bumping Baidu. Social commerce topped $89 billion January to September 2020 and is forecasted to hit $604.5 billion by 2027.