TikTok to close India business, large-scale layoffs expected

The failure of the Government of India to lift the ban imposed on Chinese apps has led to this layoff exercise.

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With restrictions on its services still in place, Bytedance, which owns TikTok, has decided to close its business in India. Along with 58 other Chinese apps, the short-video platform had been banned by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology last year.

The Indian government had imposed restriction on these apps in June 2020. Ever since then, the Bytedance has been trying to reduce expenses without affecting the benefits to its employees. It somehow managed to retain its Indian workforce for over a year. However, now it is finding it impossible to maintain the staff with no clue as to when its apps, TikTok and Helo, will be allowed to resume operation in the country.

The Company, however, still hopes it will get to return to India some time in the future. Bytedance has apparently tried to follow all governmental guidelines, local laws and regulations, but has not received any clear information from the Indian government as to when the ban on its apps will be lifted.

The app was immensely popular with millions of youngsters across the country, as well as artists, educators and storytellers. Therefore, the Company is disappointed that the circumstances should so force them to downsize and close operations, affecting the income of so many Indians who were part of their workforce.

Interstingly, the revenue of ByteDance spiked to about $35 billion in 2020, despite increased global competition and an attempt at a ban in its service in the US.

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