Despite international attention from the current U.S. presidential administration and the Chinese government, Microsoft’s current CEO, Satya Nadella, appears reluctant to comment on the company’s current plan to buy TikTok,media reported. But steve Ballmer and Bill Gates, the company’s former chief executives, seem more eager to let the outside world know how they feel about the potential acquisition, but note that they don’t agree.
Late last week, Wired published an article by Bill Gates and journalist Steve Levy on current events. Gates and Levy discussed vaccines, the Trump administration and TikTok.
“Who knows what will happen to this deal. But, yes, it’s a poisoned holy grail. Like the encryption issue, making a big deal out of the social media industry is not an easy game. “
Gates went on to point out that while competition in social media is tough, the Trump administration can effectively put pressure on the scale of the competition, which Microsoft wants to avoid. “I mean, it may sound selfish, but I think it’s probably a good thing that the game is more competitive. But it’s strange that Trump killed his only rival. “
When Bill Gates’s “poisoned holy grail” rhetoric – which seemed to be a cautionary tale of Microsoft’s possible acquisition of TikTok or any other social media platform – was in the industry, Steve Ballmer touted the deal’s success.
In an interview with CNBC last week, Mr. Ballmer specifically talked about Microsoft’s intention to buy TikTok’s overseas business. During his tenure at Microsoft, Mr. Ballmer was “excited” about the prospect of the company working on another consumer-centric business, saying Microsoft was “ready to deal with any regulatory issues that come with it.”
Despite Microsoft’s ups and downs in consumer products under Mr Ballmer, he seems eager for the company to try to offer another viable consumer product. As Microsoft’s largest shareholder, this is a big trust in Microsoft.
“Consumer business has successes and failures, and I think it’s important to remember that in order to build a new business, you have to keep trying new things.”
Given Ballmer and Gates’ work experience at Microsoft, it’s not surprising to hear that the two men disagree. Arguably, Gates’ time at Microsoft focused more on a single vision of expanding around the use of Windows, while Mr. Ballmer was mired in a shift in work/life relationships that led the company to a rough turning point for about 15 years.
Now, without knowing the details of the deal between Microsoft and TikTokByte Dance’s parent company, it’s hard to predict which CEO has the pulse, but both sides have valid arguments and have a place in the negotiations.