TikTok’s E-Commerce Ambitions Stall as Global Backlash Grows
By Faris Mokhtar and Olivia Poh
Teten Masduki couldn’t stop talking about TikTok. In a July meeting with his team, the Indonesian minister broke from the official agenda every five to 10 minutes to complain about how the Chinese-owned social media platform was squeezing local players.
It wasn’t a once-off, according to people familiar with the internal discussions. It’s a familiar scene in meetings run by Teten, appointed Minister of Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises in 2019. A former activist who took on graft and nepotism, Teten has in recent months become the public voice of a growing backlash against ByteDance Ltd.’s prized brand in Southeast Asia’s biggest retail arena.
Photo courtesy of Alexander Shatov.