TikTok owner ByteDance books $8.4 bn revenue in first half

ByteDance, owner of video-sharing app TikTok, booked revenue of 50-60 billion yuan ($7 billion to $8.4 billion) in the first half of 2019, Reuters reported.
Bytedance eventChina-based ByteDance, which was loss-making in the first-half, also posted a profit in June and was confident of making a profit in the second half of the year.

Robust growth has led the Beijing-based startup to revise its revenue target for 2019 to 120 billion yuan from an earlier goal set late last year of 100 billion yuan.

According to online tech news outlet The Information, ByteDance revenue for the whole of 2018 was $7.2 billion.

The seven-year-old startup, which was valued at $78 billion late last year, owns Chinese news aggregator Jinri Toutiao, meaning “Today’s Headlines”, as well as a domestic version of TikTok, known as Douyin.

Most of the company’s revenue is garnered in China, while Douyin generates advertising fees, TikTok is still in the early stages of making money.

Analysts have called ByteDance a strong threat to other Chinese tech industry firms including social media and gaming giant Tencent Holdings and search engine leader Baidu. ByteDance’s apps have 1.5 billion monthly active users and 700 million daily active users, the company said in July.

ByteDance last month launched a search engine that sits within Toutiao, putting it in direct competition with Baidu. It has also acquired a Chinese-language Wikipedia-like website called Baike.com to boost content.

ByteDance recently launched work efficiency app Lark and is planning to launch a paid music-streaming app aiming to expand in markets outside China.

ByteDance has global headcount of around 50,000 currently, compared with 40,000 last year.

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