A month ago, NVIDIA planned to buy ARM from SoftBank for $40 billion ($273.3 billion). Oliver Dowden, the culture secretary, is considering asking the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to investigate the deal, it has emerged.
A spokesman for the department said: “ARM is an important part of the UK technology industry and makes a major contribution to the UK economy. Although the acquisition is primarily a commercial matter for both parties, the Government will closely monitor these transactions and we will not hesitate to investigate further and take appropriate action when the acquisition is likely to have a significant impact on the UK.”
After the news of the acquisition broke, it was opposed by many media, technology circles, chip suppliers and so on. There are fears that the deal could lead to job losses in the UK and threaten ARM’s global success.
Lord Mandelson, the former deputy prime minister, joined calls for an inquiry, saying in an interview with London newspaper City AM that the takeover was a “direct threat to our supply and sovereign security in the UK and Europe” and accusing ministers of “waving the British flag while selling the jewels in the crown”. Mandelson added: “We have very few technical champions. “But here in Arm, the government seems ready to sit down and observe, “