Under normal circumstances, US tech giant Nvidia's takeover of British chip designer Arm for US$40 billion (£29 billion) would have sailed through without registering beyond the computing industry. Instead, it has made international headlines [ft.com], with UK and EU monopolies regulators launching an in-depth investigation after outcry from competitors.
In effect, the deal is pretty much dead before it starts. At the heart of this lies a row about technological sovereignty. So what is going on?
[...] The biggest pushback [seekingalpha.com], behind the scenes, actually appears to be from China. Ever since the US blacklisted Huawei [theconversation.com] and other semiconductor manufacturers in China, Beijing has been obsessed with becoming technically "self-sufficient".
While it works towards this goal, Arm has continued to license its chip architectures to Huawei. Arm claims that its chip technology is of British origin and therefore does not breach the US restrictions [ft.com] on exporting tech to a group of blacklisted Chinese companies. Thanks to this ongoing arrangement, Arm is one of the remaining enablers for China's semiconductor sector to keep pace with the outside world.
See also: ANALYSIS-Nvidia acquisition of Arm throws company into tech spat between U.S. and China [reuters.com]
Previously: Nvidia Announces $40 Billion Acquisition of Arm Holdings [soylentnews.org]
Nvidia-Branded ARM CPUs; UK Trade Union Speaks Out Against Deal [soylentnews.org]