Tech firms object to NVIDIA buying ARM - Google, Microsoft and Qualcomm band together

Posted on Monday, Feb 15 2021 @ 13:03 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
Months ago, NVIDIA revealed its $40 billion plan to acquire British chip designer ARM. The plan would give NVIDIA access to process technology, the final piece of the puzzle to fuel the company's future growth in the datacenter as well as other markets.

Whether the deal will be finalized is a big question mark as a lot of stakeholders are very nervous about the buyout's implications. At the moment, ARM is held by SoftBank, a Japanese conglomerate that doesn't compete with ARM's clients. In the case of NVIDIA, this is very different and a lot of parties fear this would give the green team too much power over the ARM ecosystem.

Besides issues of gaining regulatory abroad, especially in China, there's now also a growing movement in the US against the NVIDIA-ARM deal. The Street writes a consortium comprised of Google, Microsoft, Qualcomm, and others have asked antitrust regulators to intervene. According to news reports, at least one of the companies wants the deal "killed."
Arm is known as the "Switzerland" of the chip industry because it licenses its chip designs to whoever is willing to pay for them, including rivals to one another. The group of tech companies opposing the sale says that once it acquires Arm, Nvidia could limit other companies' access to Arm's technology or raise prices.
NVIDIA on the other hand remains confident that regulators will see the benefits of its plan, and promises to continue ARM's open licensing model.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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