Microsoft CEO Nadella said TikTok deal almost reached during Trump administration ‘strangest thing’ he’s worked on

On Monday, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft remarked that the “strangest thing” he’s ever worked on was the potential deal with TikTok to acquire its assets when Donald Trump tried to ban the app when he was president, declaring that the Chinese-owned short video app was a national threat. However, President Joe Biden did not continue with the ban.

Nadella discussed the entire incidents that took place in August 2020 at Vox Media’s Code Conference that was held on Monday, in Beverly Hills, California. He said that TikTok had approached Microsoft as it was in the midst of several issues “across two capitals” (DC and Beijing) and was looking for a partnership.

The Microsoft CEO said that TikTok was looking for a cloud provider with security services. So he said that he was “intrigued and called it a “great property.” However, Oracle was chosen as the provider for cloud servers for the app so Microsoft stop considering a deal in September 2020.

Nadella said that President Trump had a “particular point of view” on what he wanted to do and then the CEO said that he just dropped off, though he said that it was interesting. He said that there was a period of time when he felt that the US government had specific requirements but later they just disappeared.

Although he was noncommittal about buying the app in future, nonetheless he called it an “interesting product.” He also said that at his point he was “happy” with what he had.

His mixed feelings on a potential deal resurfaced earlier, when he mentioned that Microsoft had all the necessities to take over a cloud base including a cloud platform, engineers and technology for security. He said that the software and hardware company’s ability to ensure the safety of children on social media had appealed to ByteDance the parent company of TikTok. He said that Microsoft knew something about running social media through their Xbox Live and LinkedIn services.


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