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TikTok owner ByteDance launches 'Instagram-style' social media app

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By Danielle Long | Asia Pacific Correspondent

July 15, 2022 | 3 min read

ByteDance, the Chinese company which owns TikTok, is expanding its products with a shopping and lifestyle recommendations social media app.

TikTok

ByteDance, the company which owns TikTok and Douyin, has launched a new social media app Kesong

The app, Kesong, launched last week and enables users to share photos and videos, along with fashion recommendations and shopping experiences.

The app is similar to Xiaohongshu, which is known as Red outside of China, a social lifestyle and e-commerce platform with more than 200 million users.

Xiaohongshu is often compared to Instagram for its influence on young people and its lifestyle focus.

Kesong is reportedly being led by Alex Zhu, senior vice president of product and strategy at ByteDance and former head of TikTok.

The move comes as ByteDance looks to expand its empire with more social media apps both in China and abroad as it looks to take on China's tech giant Tencent, which owns WeChat.

ByteDance owns Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, which has more than 700 million daily users, and Toutiao, a popular news aggregator in China, which has 200 million users. ByteDance was recently valued at $300bn.

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