Tencent and its hyper-popular messaging app WeChat have become Trump's latest target. Here's how the company became a $69 billion behemoth that has a stake in everything from 'Fortnite' to Hollywood blockbusters. (TCEHY)

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  • An executive order issued Thursday night by President Donald Trump bars US companies and individuals from making any transaction with WeChat, a social media app owned by Chinese giant Tencent. 
  • Tencent isn’t a household name in the US, but it’s one of the most valuable companies in the world and has a stake in everything from blockbuster films to gaming. 
  • In fact, Tencent is the biggest video game company in the world. It owns US game studio Riot Game and has a substantial stake in Epic Games, the company behind “Fortnite.” 
  • Run by billionaire Pony Ma, Tencent is now worth around $69 billion — more than Berkshire Hathaway and Johnson & Johnson, and nearly as much as Alibaba.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump on Thursday issued an executive order aimed at two Chinese-owned apps: ByteDance’s hyper-popular TikTok, and WeChat, the messaging app owned by mega-conglomerate Tencent. 

The latter company likely isn’t a household name for many Americans, but it’s one of the biggest firms in Asia and has a stake in everything from video games like “Fortnite” to blockbuster films, including “Men in Black: International,” “Top Gun: Maverick,” and “Terminator: Dark Fate.” 

Plus, its messaging apps, WeChat and QQ, are used by more than two-thirds of Chinese people, according to Bloomberg

The new executive order bars American companies and individuals from making “any transaction” with WeChat over concerns about how much user data the app collects and whether the Chinese government is able to access it. Though it’s not clear how the order would be enforced or whether it’s legal, it could have far-reaching implications for the app’s users in the US, as well as Tencent. 

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Here’s how Tencent got its start in the late ’90s and grew to become one of the most powerful companies in the world. 

Content courtesy of Business Insider published on , original article here.

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