Ex-Activision CEO Bobby Kotick looks to buy TikTok amid shutdown fears

Shay Robson
Bobby Kotick with TikTok logo

Former Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is reportedly looking to purchase TikTok amid fears the social media platform may shut down in the US.

TikTok has been at the center of controversy for the United States government in the last few years. Particularly, members of the Senate believe China-based parent company ByteDance could spy on its users and share information with the Chinese Government.

With fears that TikTok could shut down if new legislation passes Congress, with lawmakers pushing for the website’s sale, ex-Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is reportedly looking to purchase the platform.

Bobby Kotick eyes up TikTok purchase amid fears of shut down

Bobby Kotick, former CEO of Activision Blizzard, has approached ByteDance founder Zhang Yiming to express interest in purchasing the social media platform TikTok, according to reports from the Wall Street Journal.

This comes amid fears that new legislation could force ByteDance to sell the platform or risk being shut down. However, purchasing TikTok won’t come cheap, with an estimated price tag in the hundreds of billions.

The former Activision executive reportedly pitched the idea to a table of people that included OpenAI CEO Sam Altman.

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Recently, users helped TikTok’s mobile app sales reach a new high in revenue, becoming the first video-sharing mobile app to surpass $10 billion in cumulative user spending in 2023.

Fears that TikTok may shut down is certainly nothing new. Throughout Donald Trump’s presidency, there were numerous attempts to ban the platform in the United States. It never came to fruition, and in fact led to a lawsuit against the US government.

However, several states have imposed a ban on TikTok from government devices, with Maryland state Governor Larry Hogan claiming the app presented “an unacceptable level of cybersecurity risk to the state.”

Kotick left Activision Blizzard at the end of 2023, following the closure of the Microsoft and ABK acquisition, with the former CEO reportedly receiving a lucrative payday of almost half a billion.