ByteDance, the owner of TikTok, is set to move to a bigger office in Singapore after reportedly planning to invest billions of dollars and recruit hundreds in the country.
The Chinese multinational has signed an agreement to lease three floors measuring over 60,000 square feet at One Raffles Quay, according to people familiar with the plan.
The office expansion will pave the way for ByteDance to make Singapore its beachhead for the rest of Asia.
Controlled by billionaire Zhang Yiming, ByteDance is pushing its social media service across Asia following setbacks in India, the UK and the USA, where Chinese tech companies are facing growing hostility amid security concerns.
The new office is being refurbished and it’s likely that employees will make the move by the first quarter of next year and will be informed about it later this month or November.
The Chinese tech firm’s move in Singapore coincides with other tech giants’ plans to expand in Singapore, including Tencent.
Singapore is seen as an attractive base for both Western and Asian firms because of its political stability, developed financial and legal system, especially as its rival Hong Kong is still grappling with upheaval and China’s tightening grip.
Bytedance’s move to One Raffles Quay, which is jointly owned by Hong Kong Land Holdings, Keppel REIT and Suntec REIT, will be a boost to the office building since its anchor tenant, UBS Group, is moving out after securing another office space to consolidate its operations in Singapore.
Bytedance currently has a shared space at one of the floors in Asia Square Tower 1, which is owned by Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund.
The tech firm currently has more than 200 job openings in Singapore, for positions from data analysts to product policy and legal counsel. Some of the positions are based in the city, but will deal with issues in other Southeast Asian countries, according to its career site.
Southeast Asia is a primary target for Zhang Yiming, the founder of ByteDance, as the region has 650 million smartphone-savvy population where competitors Alibaba and Tencent are making significant inroads.
In other news, Chindata Group, a carrier-neutral hyperscale data center solution provider in Asia Pacific, confirmed on 9 September 2020 it will publicly file an initial public offering in the United States of America.
In the filing, ByteDance accounted for 68.2% and 81.6% of Chindata’s total revenues in 2019 and for the first six months of June respectively. In 2019, the revenue from ByteDance was at US$82.3 million, and in the first six months of 2020 alone, ByteDance accounted for US$93.6 million of Chindata’s revenue.