Abu Dhabi-based AI firm takes over $100m stake in ByteDance at $220bn valuation

March 16, 2023 0:10 am

Abu Dhabi-based artificial intelligence firm G42 acquired a $100 million-plus stake in ByteDance, valuing the TikTok owner at $220 billion, Bloomberg News reported late on Tuesday, citing people with knowledge of the deal.

The United Arab Emirates company acquired stakes from existing investors through its 42XFund in recent months, the report said, adding that another fund also bought ByteDance shortly thereafter for $225 billion.

The recent numbers are a huge decline from the $300 billion valuation set during ByteDance's stock buyback program last September. In 2021, the unicorn was valued at between $300 billion and $400 billion in the secondary market.

The price drop may reflect a lack of investors interested in buying ByteDance shares amid uncertainty about both its potential IPO and the future of TikTok, which has come under intense scrutiny from US lawmakers over national security concerns, as well as volatility in global stock markets.

Earlier in the day, Bloomberg reported that TikTok was considering separating from Beijing-based ByteDance in order to address US concerns about national security risks, thereby ensuring normal operations in the country.