TikTok has a new general manager. The company ad Today, Shouzi Chew, the current CFO of parent company ByteDance, will take charge of the international operation from interim director Vanessa Pappas, who will now assume the role of COO. Prior to his current stint at ByteDance, Chew spent nearly six years at Chinese phone maker Xiaomi, where he was CFO and international president of the company.
“Shou and Vanessa’s management team is laying the groundwork for sustained growth,” ByteDance CEO Yiming Zhang said in a statement. “Shou brings in-depth knowledge of the business and industry, having led a team that were among our early investors and having worked in the tech industry for a decade. He will add depth to the team, by focusing on areas such as corporate governance and forward business initiatives. “
The fact that ByteDance has appointed one of its executives to lead the company speaks volumes about his feelings about the future of TikTok in the United States. Less than six months ago, it seemed very likely that his days in the country would be numbered. You may remember former President Donald Trump ordered ByteDance to sell the app to a “very American” company or to have it banned from US app stores due to national security concerns.
At first it seemed TikTok would land at Microsoft only for ByteDance reject the company’s offer and for Trump to approve a sale to Walmart and Oracle (the same Oracle that is now under review for its transactions in China). But then, like so much with the Trump administration, the situation took one strange turn after another. The agreement was never finalized and several deadlines passed without anything happening. At one point, TikTok even claimed that the administration was the ghost. Then Trump lost the 2020 election, and the last December 4 deadline came and went with no sales or bans in sight.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through any of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.