TikTok CEO Shou Chew (right) at a forum held in Indonesia yesterday / Photo credit: TikTok
TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew has announced plans to invest billions in Southeast Asia, one of its fastest growing regions, according to a Reuters report.
Chew, the face of TikTok’s battle over regulatory pressures in the US, delivered a speech at the first-ever TikTok Southeast Asia Impact Forum, which was held in Jakarta on Thursday.
In a statement released by TikTok today, the company said it will invest US$12.2 million over the next three years to help 120,000 small businesses in the region move their operations online through its platform. This effort will include grants, digital skills training, and advertising credits for SMEs in rural and suburban areas.
The short-video platform will also partner with various organizations across Southeast Asia to launch initiatives. These include TikTok Jalin Nusantara in Indonesia, which aims to bring local communities online, and Kid Kid in Thailand, which looks to boost environmental awareness.
TikTok also partnered with the ASEAN Foundation to launch the Social Enterprise Development Programme, which will provide seed funding of up to US$320,000 to 20 Southeast Asian social enterprises.
“Across Southeast Asia, more than 325 million people come to TikTok every month and 15 million businesses use the platform. The role we’ve played in expanding economic opportunities, education and community-building in this region and around the world is immense,” Chew said in a statement.
A survey commissioned by TikTok revealed that small businesses’ revenues increased by nearly 50% by selling their products on the platform.
See also: Can TikTok Shop catch up with Shopee, Tokopedia in Indonesia?