TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew announced in a TikTok video ahead of his testimony before Congress on Thursday that the video app now has more than 150 million users in the US, up from 100 million in 2020.
He also stated that TikTok serves over 5 million businesses in the country.
In the midst of discussions about banning the ByteDance-owned app due to national security concerns as tensions between the United States and China continue to rise, Chew cited these figures to demonstrate how important the app is to American culture.
“That’s almost half of the U.S. coming to TikTok to connect, to share to learn or just have some fun,” he said in the video.
The executive also used the video to ask TikTok users to defend the app by telling their elected representatives what they liked about it. These comments could be used by the company to demonstrate TikTok’s popularity.
“I’ll be testifying before Congress later this week to share all that we’re doing to protect Americans using the app,” Chew said
Before his congressional hearing later this week, our CEO, Shou Chew, sends a special message on behalf of the entire TikTok team to thank our community of 150 million Americans.
The app’s CEO will be grilled by the House Energy and Commerce Committee about the app’s privacy practices and how it protects children.
Earlier this month, the US House Foreign Affairs Committee approved legislation that would give Biden the authority to ban the app.
Meanwhile, reports indicate that the authorities are putting pressure on ByteDance to sell TikTok or face an embargo because they are concerned about user data being passed on to the Chinese Communist Party due to the company’s ties to China.