It is well known in the industry that after Nvidia’s acquisition of Arm failed in February, SoftBank sought Arm’s US stock IPO. After that, a number of semi-large international semiconductor factories have expressed their willingness to "group purchase" Arm. International Electronic Commerce learned from foreign media on the 31st that the CEO of US chip manufacturer Qualcomm said that he intends to launch a "group purchase" of Arm with competitors...
According to the Financial Times, Cristiano Amon, chief executive of US chipmaker Qualcomm, said, "We are willing to invest. This is a very important asset and is critical to the development of the semiconductor industry."
Amon mentioned that Qualcomm is interested in investing with competitors, and if the consortium making the acquisition is large enough, it may join other companies to acquire ARM outright.
However, so far, Qualcomm has not spoken to SoftBank about a potential investment in ARM.
International manufacturers have gradually expressed their willingness to "group purchase" on Arm
Earlier this year, Nvidia's plan to acquire ARM fell through. To this end, SoftBank chose to conduct an IPO on ARM. Foreign media previously reported that parent company SoftBank is seeking a valuation of at least $60 billion for ARM.
However, before Nvidia offered to buy Arm, there were discussions in the industry about forming a consortium.
-Intel: Interested in participating in the acquisition of Arm
In February of this year, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger expressed his willingness to participate in the acquisition of Arm at an event, provided that a consortium is prepared to acquire Arm, the company will consider participating.
"Although we are not a big user of Arm, we do use Arm. As our foundry business integrates this technology, we will use more Arm products in the future." Gelsinger said that Intel is happy to see Arm can IPO or be acquired by a consortium . "So, if a consortium emerges, we might be happy to be part of it in some way."
-SK hynix: Arm cannot be acquired by one company alone
According to Korean media reports, on March 30, Park Jong-ho, vice chairman of SK Hynix, said that he was considering a group to acquire Arm, a British semiconductor design company.
He emphasized that "Arm cannot be acquired by one company alone, so the company is considering and strategic investors to form interested companies to acquire Arm."
Regarding when to launch the acquisition plan, SK Hynix said that it is still in the early stage of discussing and participating in the acquisition of Arm, and there is no decision yet.
How "difficult to sell" is Arm?
As we all know, the British Arm company is the world's leading provider of semiconductor intellectual property (IP). Arm architecture is used in over 95% of smartphones and tablets worldwide. Arm has designed a large number of cost-effective, low-energy RISC processors, related technologies and software. But its business model is different from the general Arm. It is a semiconductor company with a different business model. The company designs a low-power Arm chip architecture and various chip technology solutions, and then licenses these technology solutions to external manufacturers. Arm does not Manufacture and sale of processors. Apple, Samsung and Qualcomm all use Arm technology.
In recent years, due to the sluggish market economy and the epidemic blockade measures in early 2020, SoftBank has invested in nearly 80 companies in recent years, of which 15 have ended in bankruptcy (as of July 15, 2020). The heavy debt has forced SoftBank to “slim down” its debt by selling assets.
In June 2020, SoftBank announced the sale of 198.3 million shares of T-Mobile, the third-largest telecommunications company in the United States, with a total value of about $21 billion.
At that time, some industry players analyzed that if SoftBank wanted to sell Arm, there were certain restrictions on finding a "buyer". Since 2014 to 2016 in the semiconductor industry, very few super-large mergers and acquisitions have been successfully passed, "If it is a sale, there is almost no possibility that the buyer will be Chinese-funded. At present, the United States cannot agree, and (CFIUS) will intervene. If there is a sale of Arm, the UK will also intervene.”