TikTok's U.S. ad business roars back post-Trump

FORMER PRESIDENT TRUMP: "We may be banning Tiktok."

Accused by the Trump administration of being a front for the Chinese government, Tiktok's ad business looked bleak last July.

Big brands backed off on spending as former U.S. President Donald Trump levied threats at the video sharing app popular among teens.

But after it became clear Joe Biden had won November's U.S presidential election, that all changed.

Corporate sponsors have raced back to Tiktok, booking advertising campaigns and experimenting with new ways to reach consumers, three ad agency executives told Reuters.

It comes as just last week, Biden paused legal action against the Chinese-owned company in a lawsuit could have seen the app banned in the U.S.

Although TikTok's U.S. advertising business is estimated to be small compared with larger social platforms, it said it tracked a 500% increase in advertisers running campaigns in the U.S over the course of 2020, signing up brands including McDonald's, Kate Spade and Bose.

As the app seeks to earn more money and capitalize on its large Gen Z audience, its revenue ambitions have grown and now include selling top-dollar ad packages centered around holidays or major events.

To celebrate Black History Month, TikTok will hold a virtual event with 500 Black creators on Thursday and has invited brands to sponsor the event for $750,000, according to a TikTok slide deck obtained by Reuters.

The deck also showed that the company has asked brands for $1.5 million to sponsor a live finale of Black History Month on Feb. 26 featuring artist performances and special guest appearances.