TikTok's US chief says video site will stay despite Trump ban

TikTok will continue to operate its hit music video app in the US, whatever comes of the threatened Trump administration ban on its business, senior executive Vanessa Pappas said.

“We believe we have multiple paths forward to ensure that we continue to provide this amazing app experience to the millions of Americans who come to rely on it every day," Pappas said Thursday in one of her first interviews since US President Donald Trump issued executive orders calling for the sale of TikTok’s U.S. business by its Chinese owner, ByteDance Ltd., or a complete shutdown of its American operations, citing national security concerns.

The White House has been ratcheting up a fight with China's government and businesses and has issued restrictions on a number of Chinese tech giants, including Huawei Technologies Co. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. Trump issued an executive order on Aug. 14 requiring TikTok to divest its US business within 90 days under a ruling by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US, or CFIUS.

"We’ve made it clear that we strongly disagree with the conclusions of CFIUS and we're certainly disappointed in the outcome that we saw there,” said Pappas, general manager of TikTok’s business in the US, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. “We still haven't been presented with any evidence to back up those claims and assertions.”

Meanwhile, employees say they are following a daily drumbeat of reports over who might purchase the company’s US business and become their new employer. Microsoft Corp. confirmed its pursuit of TikTok on Aug. 2, but Oracle Corp. and Twitter Inc. are among other tech companies that have explored bids, people familiar with the negotiations have told Bloomberg News.

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