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TikTok owner ByteDance hires Facebook’s Shant Oknayan

TikTok, has seen immense growth and has rapidly become a key player in the short-form video space

Industry veteran Shant Oknayan has joined ByteDance as General Manager of Global Business Solutions across the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey (MENAT). In his new role, Oknayan will work closely with ByteDance’s clients and partners while leading the business, sales and marketing strategies across all of ByteDance’s products in the MENAT region, which includes TikTok.

With close to 20 years of diverse experience leading business development and digital transformation strategies for both government and private entities, Mr. Oknayan brings a demonstrable track record of growing digital platforms to ByteDance. In his previous position as Group Director at Facebook, Oknayan drove commercial partnerships across a broad number of categories including FMCG, Retail, eCommerce and many more, in the MENA region. He previously held a number of positions at Google in the region, including SMB market development and Head of Strategy and Operations.

Oknayan also brings an entrepreneurial and pioneering mindset to ByteDance. In 2012, he co-founded GlamBox, the first subscription-based beauty e-commerce platform in the region, which was acquired in 2017 after multiple rounds of successful fundraising.

As the leading destination for short-form mobile video with a mission to inspire creativity and bring joy, TikTok encourages creative expression and entertainment through easy-to-use video editing tools, resulting in a pool of very diversified content, and supporting the effortless viewing experience on the platform. Its supportive, creative atmosphere lets users become a part of a global community, and drives engagement. Brands see TikTok as an exciting way to reach and engage with a broader audience, by embracing the creativity and authenticity of the TikTok community.

Commenting on his new role, Shant Oknayan said: “I am truly excited to join ByteDance, which is one of the fastest-growing global technology companies, spearheading innovation in the mobile space. In the MENAT region, ByteDance — with its short-video platform TikTok — has truly disrupted the way people create and interact with content, inspiring creativity and bringing joy to the community. I look forward to bringing that engagement and excitement to the forefront of our clients’ business and marketing strategies, working closely with my colleagues and partners to create new synergies in the industry.”

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