ByteDance Appeals Trump Order to Divest Tiktok as Deadline Nears

TikTok's parent, ByteDance, filed a court appeal of the Trump administration's order to sell off its U.S. assets by Nov. 12.
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ByteDance, which owns the popular entertainment app TikTok, asked a federal appeals court to block the Trump administration's order that the Chinese tech company sell off its U.S. assets.

The U.S. government's order, signed on Aug. 14 by President Donald Trump, set a deadline of Nov. 12 for the sale of Bytedance's U.S. assets. The order cites national-security grounds for the divestiture.

“With the November 12 [Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S.] deadline imminent and without an extension in hand, we have no choice but to file a petition in court to defend our rights and those of our more than 1,500 employees in the U.S.," TikTok said in a statement. 

"We remain committed to working with the Administration — as we have all along — to resolve the issues it has raised, but our legal challenge today is a protection to ensure these discussions can take place." 

TikTok said it had applied to CFIUS for a 30-day extension but it had not been granted. The company said it hadn't heard from CFIUS in weeks.

In its petition to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Beijing-based ByteDance on Nov. 10 asked for a review of the divestiture order, claiming that the order and the government’s assertion that TikTok is a national-security threat were unlawful and violated the company’s rights under the U.S. Constitution. 

In September, ByteDance had agreed to sell a 20% stake in TikTok to Oracle  (ORCL) - Get Report and Walmart  (WMT) - Get Report.

Tiktok has said, "For a year, TikTok has actively engaged with CFIUS in good faith to address its national security concerns, even as we disagree with its assessment." 

"In the nearly two months since the President gave his preliminary approval to our proposal to satisfy those concerns, we have offered detailed solutions to finalize that agreement – but have received no substantive feedback on our extensive data privacy and security framework."

In September, the Trump administration ordered the TikTok app removed from app stores while it was negotiating its deal. A judge overruled this order, stating that Trump’s attempt to ban the app likely overstepped legal authority.