UK Watchdog calls for further review of Nvidia-Arm deal

By on August 20, 2021 0

UK government competition watchdog says Nvidia’s plan to acquire UK chip designer Arm for $ 40 billion “raises serious competition concerns” and calls for full investigation that would prolong uncertainties regarding the successful chord.

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority said concerns, outlined in its report released on Friday, were about Nvidia’s potential to harm competitors by “restricting access to Arm’s intellectual property,” despite claims. repeated assurances from the chipmaker that it would maintain the history of the chip designer. open licensing model that is popular with companies like Intel, AMD, Apple, and others.

[Related: Why Pat Gelsinger Decided To Wind Down Intel’s RealSense Unit: Exclusive]

“Ultimately, the CMA is concerned that this loss of competition could stifle innovation in a number of markets, including data centers, gaming, the Internet of Things and self-driving cars,” wrote on Friday. the CMA. “This could translate into more expensive or lower quality products for businesses and consumers. “

The CMA said Nvidia had offered a behavioral cure, but the regulator said the measure “would not alleviate its concerns.” As a result, the CMA is calling for a phase two investigation, which is expected to be approved by Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden. Dowden sparked the UK’s review of the Nvidia-Arm deal when it issued a public intervention notice in April.

“We look forward to the opportunity to respond to the CMA’s initial views and resolve any concerns the government may have,” a spokesperson for Nvidia said in a statement to CRN. “We remain convinced that this transaction will be beneficial for Arm, its licensees, the competition and the UK”

If Dowden asks the CMA to initiate a phase two investigation, it may “take steps to remedy, mitigate or prevent any adverse public interest effect” related to the Nvidia-Arm deal after the conclusion of the second. investigation, the AMC has already said.

When Nvidia announced its $ 40 billion deal to acquire Arm from Japanese telecoms giant SoftBank last year, it said the deal is expected to close in early 2022.

However, that timeline had already been called into question before the new CMA report due to alleged delays in reviewing the deal by regulators in Europe and China. The Telegraph reported on July 24 that the European Commission had yet to receive the necessary documents from Nvidia, and

Information reported on July 30 that the Chinese government has yet to start a formal review.

Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia, told Financial Time Thursday that the deal will likely take longer to be approved than the company’s initial 18-month window.

“Our discussions with regulators are taking longer than initially thought, so this pushes the timetable,” he told the newspaper. He added: “It is not a specific regulator, but we are confident in the deal, we are confident that regulators should recognize the benefits of the acquisition.”

Nvidia has pledged to maintain Arm’s historic open licensing model for silicon designs, but the deal has reportedly raised concerns about this from Microsoft, Google and Qualcomm. Other industry players who have spoken recently included Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, who expressed concerns about the deal. Chipmakers Broadcom, MediaTek and Marvell have all expressed support.

The GPU juggernaut also swore that Arm’s intellectual property would remain registered in the UK and expand the chip designer’s research and development presence there.

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