ByteDance executive Louis Yang Luyu, co-founder of lip-synch video app Musical.ly that was absorbed by TikTok in 2018, has quit the world’s most valuable unicorn amid a sweeping corporate restructuring that has put an end to the company’s aggressive expansion plans. Yang, who was involved in the TikTok owner’s move into the education business under its Dali unit , left the company last week, according to Chinese media LatePost on Thursday. Yang’s account on Feishu, the corporate collaboration tool of ByteDance, has been “suspended”, which indicates the user was not working, according to three employees with knowledge of the matter who declined to be identified. His LinkedIn account, however, did not show any change of status as a Shanghai-based entrepreneur with ByteDance as of Friday. ByteDance, which is headquartered in Beijing, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Yang joined ByteDance in November 2017, following the firm’s US$1 billion acquisition of Musical.ly. His most recent role in ByteDance was with the company’s strategy department. Before that, he led the team that made educational gadgets under the firm’s Dali Education business. This unit went through at least three rounds of lay-offs, sacking thousands , as Beijing cracked down on the off-campus tutoring market. Yang co-founded Musical.ly in 2014 – two years before TikTok was established – with Alex Zhu, who had a brief stint as TikTok chief executive . Zhu currently serves as head of product and strategy at ByteDance. Although the company’s headquarters was in Shanghai, the founders of Musical.ly set up an office in Santa Monica, California, to help sharpen their focus on the US market. By 2015, Musical.ly had millions of users, mostly teens, on its platform to create short videos of themselves lip-synching or singing in their own voices . Yang’s exit from ByteDance reflects how its restructuring is ushering in a new era for the company, which held a muted 10-year anniversary in March , as it pours new investments into the metaverse and prepares for a potential public listing . The timing may have also been right for Yang. Privately-held ByteDance started in April a new round of employee stock buy-backs that offer a higher rate than last year’s repurchase programme. ByteDance has seen its valuation drop by US$100 billion over the past year to about US$300 billion, according to sources and published deal offers. It was valued at about US$400 billion last year in private market deals. ByteDance closes Shanghai games studio in major setback Yang’s successor at Dali Education’s hardware team – Yang Kang, no relation – had also transferred to ByteDance’s strategy department, according to the LatePost report on Thursday. It said the company has no plans to launch new educational gadgets. Still, the Musical.ly connection of ByteDance continues to help fill the company’s executive ranks. In April, ByteDance appointed veteran corporate lawyer Julie Gao as its new chief financial officer , replacing Chew Shou Zi who now serves as chief executive of global hit short video-sharing platform TikTok. Gao worked with ByteDance on two of the company’s biggest acquisitions, Musical.ly and video game developer Moonton Technology .