Zhang Yiming: The man who said no to Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent

Rejecting offers from BAT to grow ByteDance, Zhang Yiming has quickly built up a social media content empire that includes TikTok and Toutiao, challenging the incumbents 

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After ByteDance secured its pre-IPO financing in October 2018, it was valued at over $75bn, becoming one of the world’s most valuable startups. Its founder and CEO, Zhang Yiming, is currently worth $16.2bn. The software engineering graduate started ByteDance in 2012 when he was 29 years old. He has since grown his company into a social media leader that lets consumers create, consume and interact with content in multiple forms, reaching hundreds of millions of people every day. Its news aggregator Jinri Toutiao – which means “today's headlines” in Chinese – has over 240m daily active user...
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Edited by Wendy Lovinger, Wang Xiao'e

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