Over the weekend it was reported that Australia’s Vanessa Pappas will step into the top job at embattled social media company, TikTok amid growing Chinese and U.S diplomatic tensions.
Previously Pappas had held the general manager role of the US branch of the company since January 2019, and had also led the Australia and New Zealand operations for more than a year.
Her predecessor Kevin Mayer had only held the chief executive role for three months after he controversially resigned citing changes to the “political environment” had influenced his decision.
The Chinese-owned company that operates TikTok, ByteDance, has faced hostile appeals for months to sell the business, after American President Donald Trump deemed it a security threat to the U.S.
TikTok has rejected claims it has shared data with the Chinese Government and refutes the possibility of sharing non-censored videos with Chinese authorities. It denies being a security risk.
The app has gained huge momentum and popularity among younger generations globally, with more than 680 million monthly users around the world.
Through a statement on Twitter, Pappas said she was “proud and humbled” to take up the interim head role.
“Our community and our team who work so hard to enable this product continue to inspire me,” she wrote.
“It’s truly amazing what we’ve accomplished in two years, I have no doubt what we can accomplish in this next chapter.”