Co-founder of ByteDance Steps Down as Chief Executive


Image Credit – BBC


The Chief executive Officer and co-founder of TikTok owner ByteDance have announced that he will be stepping down and transitioning to a new role by the end of this year. Zhang Yiming said he will be succeeded by fellow co-founder Rubo Liang, in a letter addressed to the employees. This news has stirred the Chinese market as the biggest shake-up at the Chinese technology giant since its launch almost a decade ago.

TikTok’s popularity has helped it become a global sensation but has also drawn scrutiny regarding its social impacts. Mr. Zhang wrote in a message on the company’s official website, “The truth is, I lack some of the skills that make an ideal manager. I’m more interested in analyzing organizational and market principles, and leveraging these theories to further reduce management work, rather than managing people.” “Similarly, I am not very social, preferring solitary activities like being online, reading, listening to music, and contemplating what may be possible,” he added.

Mr. Zhang said his successor Rubo Liang has been “an invaluable partner”, developing the firm’s technology as well as hiring and managing employees. His role within the company makes him the perfect choice of filling the shoes of the CEO. Mr. Liang’s most recent role at ByteDance was head of its human resources department. The letter that Mr. Zhang has written also said that the change in leadership will take place over the next six months to ensure a smooth transition of roles.

Beijing-based ByteDance created the global smash-hit application TikTok, which has an estimated 700 million active monthly users. It was formed in 2021 and has taken over, especially the youth with its dynamic formats. However, its massive popularity has meant it has been scrutinized by governments around the world, including in America and China.

During his presidency, Donald Trump regularly attacked ByteDance, accusing TikTok of being a threat to US national security. Politicians and officials raised concerns about users’ data being passed to the Chinese government. TikTok denied accusations it shared user data.

Last month, ByteDance was one of 13 online platforms called on by Chinese regulators to adhere to tighter regulations in their financial divisions, as part of a wider push to rein in technology companies. Beijing took a hands-off approach to encourage the technology firms to grow but official scrutiny of their platforms has stepped up as they have branched out into financial services for many years now.

People’s Bank of China said in a statement, “Internet platforms have played an important role in improving the efficiency of financial services and broadening the access of financial services to more people.” They also added, “At the same time, some financial services were running without licenses, and there are serious rule violations in areas such as regulatory arbitrage, unfair competition, and damaging consumers’ interests.”

The world that we live in is connected intermittently. However, the new changes might present the world with innovation leading us to a new chapter in the universe.


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