Funding secured; future tbd (later in the article: "Bytedance’s biggest potential risk may be China’s notoriously sensitive censors.")
"Six-year-old Bytedance, owner of news aggregator Toutiao and video sensation Tik Tok, has surpassed Uber Technologies Inc. to become the world’s most valuable startup, according to CB Insights, which values Uber at $72 billion. Having become a major player in China’s internet scene, it’s now planning to use its influx of cash to take on Western rivals. Its biggest overseas hit is a video service called Douyin -- known as Tik Tok beyond China -- that’s siphoning attention from the likes of Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Facebook Inc.Bytedance Is Said to Secure Funding at Record $75 Billion Value | Bloomberg
Bytedance is said to have earned $2.5 billion in revenue last year and had initially targeted 50 billion yuan ($7.2 billion) for 2018, but has yet to turn a profit. It started life as a producer of apps for sharing crass jokes before moving to its signature news aggregation service Jinri Toutiao, which means “Today’s Headlines.” It then spent years building up its user base and perfecting its recommendation systems. Toutiao’s now a hit among users who spend almost as much time on Toutiao as they do on WeChat, the Tencent super-app that acts as phone, social media and digital wallet for over a billion users."