ByteDance's First Quarter Revenue Surges to USD 5.6 Billion
COVID-19 and China
Image credit: ByteDance official website

Beijing-based Internet firm ByteDance, the originator and owner of the popular app TikTok, booked around USD 5.6 billion in revenue for the first quarter of 2020, said two people with knowledge of the matter.

The number shows a 130% year-on-year growth, confirmed one of the pair, who declined to be identified as the matter remains private. This new Internet giant has set a revenue goal of CNY 200 billion (USD 28.2 billion), according to another person. The first person said that ByteDance aims to reach revenue half the amount of strong competitor Tencent (OTCMKTS: TCTZF). Tencent’s reported revenue of nearly CNY 377 billion (USD 53.2 billion) in 2019.

For the first quarter revenue data, ByteDance officially declined to comment.

The high growth rate of 130% indicates that this 8-year-old byte beating company is capturing a larger share of the Chinese Internet advertising market. According to people familiar with the matter, the company's revenue mainly comes from its advertising on China's App, which includes news aggregator Jinri Toutiao and short video app Douyin. Although TikTok is spreading internationally, it hasn’t become its main revenue source.

While the epidemic is a nightmare for parts of some businesses, ByteDance has benefited a lot from it. People stayed at home, and the mobile Apps were further welcomed during the warm season. Douyin’s livestreaming became the first choice for online sales. For the short video industry, the industry's duration of use per day increased (in Chinese) from 11.5% in the Spring Festival of 2019 to 17.3% in 2020, according to QuestMobile.

ByteDance has recently been valued at USD 95 to 140 billion in the market for private secondary trading, sources told Reuters.

Last month, ByteDance appointed Kevin Mayer, former head of Disney’s online video business, as CEO of TikTok.

Editor: Luke Sheehan

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