Chinese Media Startup Toutiao to Purchase for $800M-$1B

Jon Howard
November 11, 2017

The acquirement signifies the major project overseas thus far for a Chinese startup priced at $20 billion that is, by now, generated one of the world's most significant news services.

Shanghai video based lip syncing app,, has been sold for $1 billion to Chinese tech giant Bytedance.

Bytedance, a company valued at $20 billion and which produces the Toutiao news aggregation app, announced the news on Friday morning but did not announce the financial terms, according to Bloomberg.

Now the Beijing-based company, with a valuation said to be in the neighborhood of $20 billion, is making bigger moves to crack into the world of mobile video, media and entertainment in the USA and beyond. Also this week, Bytedance entered into a pact with Chinese mobile-app developer Cheetah Mobile to provide $50 million in funding to, a top live-streaming app majority-owned by Cheetah, which has a community of about 30 million users.

In 2016, rolled out a live-streaming app called, and it has struck content deals with Viacom, NBCUniversal and Hearst, among others.

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Wildly popular in America and around the world, with 200 million-plus users creating and sharing 15-second music videos, was founded in China three years ago by Louis Yang and Alex Zhu, who will both be joining ByteDance.

Bytedance operates a suite of products that provide creators and users with a content experience powered by machine and deep learning algorithms.

Jinri Toutiao - or "Today's Headlines" - is one of the few Chinese internet operations to have found success without the backing of one of the country's three biggest industry players: Tencent Holdings Ltd, Baidu Inc and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

The Beijing-based firm, which recently bought video platform Flipagram and also owns English news app TopBuzz, declined to comment on its current valuation.

Additionally, will work with Bytedance to develop its presence in new markets including China, Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia, where Bytedance already has a strong footprint.

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