Bytedance is the most valuable start-up in the world. What hardly anyone knows is that it is the driving force behind the successful teen app Tik Tok. A smartphone of their own is also to appear. But how did the Chinese company become so successful? A small portrait.
Do you remember Musically? That was this hip social media app for teenagers that kids and teens liked so much. But only until August 2018, when it was simply stamped.
The Chinese company Bytedance bought the app for an estimated one billion US dollars and integrated it into a new video platform: Tik Tok was born.
Tik Tok is the app’s figurehead
Tik Tok started the triumphal march of Bytedance. The app is known in China as Douyin and is especially popular in Asia. With it you can create and upload short videos, accompany them with selected music and add numerous effects.
Until not so long ago, the network was mainly intended for young people. In the meantime, however, the number of users has risen to such an extent that even companies do not stop at Tik Tok.
Business of Apps reports that Tik Tok 2018 was the fourth most downloaded app in the world, ahead of Instagram and Snapchat. And according to tech magazine Digiday, an incredible 800 million people now use the video-focused platform worldwide.
Germany is the most important Tik-Tok market in Europe
In Germany, the app currently has more than four million users. This makes Germany the strongest Tik-Tok market in Europe to date. We are just ahead of France (also four million users), Great Britain (3.7 million) and Spain (2.7 million).
Borussia Dortmund and FC Bayern Munich are now also using the application from the German Soccer League to upload exclusive clips and reach fans all over the world. The BVB currently has around 185,000 followers, the German record champion 202,000.
The special thing about the platform is that it relies on a somewhat differently programmed algorithm. Every video can go virally through it – regardless of how many followers the user has.
The algorithm guarantees success
The algorithm originates from another Bytedance app: It is called Toutiao and is hardly known in Germany. This is a mobile news aggregator.
The artificial intelligence evaluates which content users might still like on the basis of personal interests, but also on the basis of image and text recognition and other elements. This successfully prompts them to consume more.
Toutiao runs on over 240 million devices in China. In Europe, Bytedance is trying to build on this success with the News Republic app. The start-up bought the News Aggregator in 2017.
Bytedance: The Trojan Horse?
The start-up’s app portfolio also includes many other Chinese and international applications. Lark, for example, is a kind of slack, Duoshan a Chinese Snapchat copy, and Helo a social media platform with over 40 million users in India.
Only rarely has a Chinese company with a platform in Europe and the USA been able to generate such large reach as Bytedance. No wonder that companies in Germany are also paying attention.
The start-up is currently worth 75 billion US dollars and yet hardly known. Perhaps because it was not founded until 2012 by Zhang Yiming?
One can almost call Bytedance a Trojan horse. The start-up knows how successful it is internationally with Tik Tok. But most countries don’t know the ambitious company behind it.
How the company finances itself
Bytedance earns money through advertising in the networks and through an integrated coin system. Within Tik Tok, for example, users can buy virtual coins to purchase certain emojis and give them their favorite profiles.
According to the market research institute Sensortower, Bytedance has earned USD 75 million so far.
But the start-up can hardly save itself from investors either. According to the Crunchbase business platform, the company has received more than four billion US dollars from investors since October 2018.
Only in April did the company receive a loan of 1.3 billion US dollars from JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and the Bank of China, among others. That’s probably what’s needed, too. After all, Bytedance wants to bring its own smartphone onto the market next.
According to Bloomberg, the company also expects a turnover of 18 billion US dollars for 2019. By 2020, the figure is expected to be 29 billion. Read more here about how to buy tiktok likes for further details.