Walmart has joined forces with Microsoft to launch a multibillion-dollar bid for TikTok’s US business.

The retail titan had previously expressed an interest in snapping up TikTok’s American operations but faced stiff competition from Microsoft and Oracle to gain control of the video-sharing social media platform.

But Walmart has now revealed it is working with Microsoft on a bid, as first reported by CNBC.   

Walmart said the deal would help it “reach and serve omnichannel customers” and grow its marketplace business

TikTok is thought to be closing in on a deal to sell its US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand operations, which are expected to fetch between $20bn and $30bn (£15bn to £23bn).   

A number of other bidders are also thought to be in the running.

Should Walmart win the race, it would represent the latest strategic play in its ongoing battle to compete with online rival Amazon. 

Walmart is planning to unveil its own subscription service, Walmart+, later this year, to throw down the gauntlet to Amazon Prime. 

It has already launched Walmart Marketplaces, which sells tens of millions of products from third-party sellers. That division was turbo-charged in 2016 following the $3bn acquisition of, which has now been subsumed into Walmart’s existing website.  

A Walmart spokeswoman described TikTok’s blend of integration of advertising and ecommerce as “a clear benefit to creators and users in those markets”.

She added: “We believe a potential relationship with TikTok US in partnership with Microsoft could add this key functionality and provide Walmart with an important way for us to reach and serve omnichannel customers as well as grow our third-party marketplace and advertising businesses.  

“We are confident that a Walmart and Microsoft partnership would meet both the expectations of US TikTok users while satisfying the concerns of US government regulators.”

The potential deal would build on the existing relationship between Walmart and Microsoft. 

The businesses have worked together since 2018 when Walmart agreed to a five-year deal to adopt Microsoft’s Azure cloud technology and its Office 365 applications.