TikTok shakes up leadership amid questions about its future

TikTok shakes up leadership amid questions about its future

TikTok, the popular short-form video app that is facing questions about its future in the United States, said on Thursday that its chief operating officer was leaving the company and it had hired a new head of operations and a new head of operations. Brand and communications were hired. Officer.

V. Pappas, who joined TikTok in 2018 as chief operating officer to run its North American business, will become a strategic advisor to the company. Tiktok’s Chief of Staff Adam Presser will be its head of operations.

In an email to the company on Thursday, Mx. “It is the right time for me to move on and refocus on my entrepreneurial passion,” said Pappas, 44.

The company also said that Xenia Mucha will oversee its massive communications team. Ms Mucha, who for many years led a 500-person global media relations team at Disney, was described in a 2021 New York Times profile as “combatant” and a “leadership team fulcrum” whose voice makes most major corporate decisions. I was in Disney.

“This is an important time for our company,” TikTok Chief Executive Shaw Chew said in an announcement on Thursday, “and I am confident that we are in a strong position to meet the opportunities ahead of us.”

TikTok’s leadership change is coming at a crucial time, as the app faces heavy pressure from Chinese company ByteDance over its ownership and questions about its data and privacy practices. The governor of Montana recently signed a bill banning TikTok in the state from next year, and the app has been banned by universities, government agencies and the military. The Biden administration has also pushed for a possible sale of the app to meet national security concerns.

The intense scrutiny on TikTok has put the spotlight on its top executives, who have been asked to publicly defend the company and its practices before lawmakers. Mr. Chew appeared before Congress for heated hearings in March when senators grilled MX. Pappu to appear in September by MX. Pappas was the first time a TikTok leader had to answer publicly to lawmakers about his relationship with Beijing.

MX. Pappas has also defended the app and become the face of the company amid calls for a ban on TikTok under two presidential administrations.

Ms Mucha is not the first Disney leader to join TikTok. Kevin Mayer was Disney’s top streaming executive before joining as chief executive of TikTok for a short time in 2020.

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