TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer Resigns as Trump Pushes for App Ban

In a letter to employees, Kevin Mayer cited “sharp change” in the political environment as a reason to step down.

2 min read
Kevin Mayer had only joined TikTok on 1 June, following a long stint at Disney.

Kevin Mayer has stepped down as the CEO of TikTok, four months after assuming office as the company chief, amid Trump administration’s crackdown on the app.

He had joined TikTok on 1 June, following a long stint at Disney.

Venessa Pappa, general manager of Tik Tok in North America, will temporarily be taking his place as the interim global head of the company, say international media reports.


According to CNBC, Kevin Mayer wrote a letter to the employees shedding light on reasons for his departure.

“In recent weeks, as the political environment has sharply changed, I have done significant reflection on what the corporate structural changes will require, and what it means for the global role I signed up for. Against this backdrop, and as we expect to reach a resolution very soon, it is with a heavy heart that I wanted to let you all know that I have decided to leave the company.”   
Kevin Mayer

Stating categorically that his decision has nothing to do with the company, expressing optimism for TikTok’s bright future and observing that the role of employees will remain unchanged, Mayer also said:

“At the same time, I understand that the role that I signed up for – including running TikTok globally – will look very different as a result of the US Administration’s action to push for a sell off of the US business. I’ve always been globally focused in my work, and leading a global team that includes TikTok US was a big draw for me.”   


A TikTok spokesperson reportedly told CNBC that they “appreciate that the political dynamics of the last few months have significantly changed what the scope of Kevin’s role would be going forward, and fully respect his decision.”

The spokesperson further said that they thank Mayer for his time at the company and wish him well.


Microsoft and Oracle are presently competing to acquire TikTok in the US. TikTok, on 23 August, had also announced that it is set to take legal action against US President Donald Trump over a ban on the app imposed by him.

United States President Donald Trump on Friday, 14 August, asked TikTok parent company, ByteDance, to divest the US operation of the app within 90 days, citing national security reasons.

(With inputs from CNBC.)

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