UK regulator starts reviewing Arm deal
The UK Office for Competition and Markets start an investigation into the absorption of the American company Nvidia British development company Arm chips for $ 40 billion. It called on interested parties to submit their views on the controversial deal before the official proceedings.
Arm Holdings has 6,500 employees, including 3,000 in the UK. Arm is based in Cambridge but has offices in Manchester, Belfast, and Warwick.
The company is a world leader in the development of microchips for smartphones, computers, and tablets. GPU-based California-based Nvidia announced its purchase of Arm from Japan's SoftBank in September.
Arm CEO Simon Segars previously admitted that it could take up to 18 months to get regulatory approval around the world. And Hermann Hauser, co-founder of Arm, wrote to the House of Commons' foreign affairs committee. According to him, the combined business will become the next US tech monopoly along with companies like Google and Facebook. He argued that since Nvidia is one of Arm's more than 500 customers, the new model will eventually kill the company. Hauser also said the deal would be "an absolute disaster for Cambridge, the UK, and Europe," adding that Nvidia would decide to move Arm to the US and that it would result in job losses.
In turn, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang assured that the company will maintain its base in Cambridge, and Nvidia is going to invest in it to create "a leading manufacturer in the age of artificial intelligence."
The Competition Authority said the chip industry is worth billions and "critical to many products in everyday life." The regulator has pledged to work with other antitrust authorities around the world to carefully analyze the impact of the deal and make sure it does not ultimately lead to higher prices or low-quality goods.
The Office will also examine the possible impact of the deal on competition within the UK.
If an investigation finds that the deal violates UK competition rules, the FDA could block the takeover.