ByteDance says preliminary talks with a tech firm over TikTok have started: staff letter By Reuters

© Reuters. People walk past the Bytedance headquarters building in Beijing

BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) – TikTok owner ByteDance said on Monday that the company had initiated preliminary talks with a tech company to help it continue offering the short video app in the United States, a source said citing an internal company letter.

President Donald Trump only agreed to allow Microsoft Corp (O:) to negotiate the acquisition of popular short-video app TikTok if it could secure a deal in 45 days, three people familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

The move represents an about-face for Trump and prompted the U.S. tech giant to declare its interest in the blockbuster social media deal that could further inflame U.S.-China relations.

ByteDance did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the letter.

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