The absence of TikTok could lead to a revenue spike for Meta, Google, and Snap, potentially boosting their stock prices. Bernstein also noted that Meta has the best-in-class ad products, while YouTube offers the highest overlap of branded campaign objectives. Bernstein estimated that TikTok’s projected revenue in the US was between $7bn and $8bn, indicating a significant opportunity for competitors to fill the gap.
In India, TikTok was banned due to concerns over its Chinese ownership and its potential impact on national security and defence. Following the ban, local apps such as ShareChat’s Moj and Times Internet’s MX Takatak gained many of TikTok’s users. International players like Instagram, YouTube, and Snap also seized upon the opportunity with short-format videos.
However, Bernstein noted that it doesn’t expect a similar scenario of local TikTok clones rising up in the US. TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will testify in front of Congress after multiple calls to ban the short video app in the country, and pressure on parent company ByteDance to sell TikTok US or face a prohibition.
Chew has stated that TikTok is not “beholden” to the Chinese government and that ByteDance is not an agent of China or any other country. TikTok has spent over $1.5bn on Project Texas, which aims to address concerns about the safety and transparency of its US operations. The app has also highlighted its contribution to the US economy, with over 5 million businesses on the platform and more than 7,000 employees in the country. However, with concerns remaining, a set of creators and some Democratic representatives are protesting the potential ban in Washington DC.