Billionaire who lost chance to buy TikTok is now rival

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In 2017, Su Hua, founder of a Chinese startup called Kuaishou Technology, was about to close the biggest deal of his career: the acquisition of a new video service that would become the TikTok. But arch-rivals ByteDance won the dispute with a better offer, and Su lost what has become a global phenomenon.

Now, the 38-year-old businessman is being rewarded in some way. In February, Kuaishou went public in Hong Kong and raised more than $5 billion on the strength of its expanding video and commerce operations. ByteDance, in turn, came into the US government’s crosshairs and later became the target of scrutiny by China, which should delay its initial public offering.