No British Blessing Yet for Arm-Nvidia Marriage

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The British Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) will investigate the acquisition of chip designer Arm by Nvidia in detail. Initial research indicates that the deal could pose a problem for competition in the sector.

 

In September 2020, Nvidia made a $40 billion bid for Arm, world-renowned for its chip designs. However, the takeover received considerable criticism from the sector. After all, Arm licenses its technology to competitors of Nvidia, and they fear that they will be disadvantaged by the deal.

After Europe had its doubts before, the British competition authority is now also listening to those arguments. After an initial investigation, there will now be a ‘second phase’ lasting 24 weeks in which it will investigate in detail whether there is a competition problem.

That research does not start from scratch but builds on the initial findings. There is a general fear that the acquisition of Arm may reduce competition in IoT, data centres, automotive and gaming (hardware).

“Arm has a unique place in the global technology chain, and we need to be sure that the implications of this transaction are fully considered. The CMA will report to me on competition and national security issues and will advise on the next steps,” said Nadine Dorries, UK minister for digitalisation.

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