After the failed purchase by NVIDIA, the future of MRA is not yet defined. Softbank, its owner, has publicly announced its intention to go public and begin trading on the exchange — more specifically, the Nasdaq — despite opposition from the UK. However, another path might open up to the chip designer. Hand in hand with Samsung. And the rumors about a possible purchase were not long in coming.
Bloomberg reports that Masayoshi Son, CEO of Softbank, is planning a trip to South Korea to discuss a possible “strategic alliance” between ARM and Samsung. The parameters of this potential agreement are unknown for now, although it is logical to assume that it could cause some resentment in the semiconductor industry.
After all, one of the things that sets ARM apart — and one that turned out to be key to NVIDIA’s doomed acquisition — is its “neutrality.” This means that its technologies and developments are available to all license seekers without privileges.
Can Samsung buy ARM?
As said, it is logical that the rapprochement between ARM and Samsung could raise suspicions from other big names in the industry. Even more so considering the recent statements by Lee Jae Yongthe vice president and heir to the South Korean company, who has just returned from an extensive tour that has taken him to Mexico and the UK, among other places.
As reported eDailyupon arrival in seoul, the general manager said, “the main purpose of this trip was to encourage our employees who are working hard for the company and for our country in a difficult environment ahead of us. I did not meet with ARM on this visit to the UK. Maybe SoftBank President Son will be in Seoul next month. But I don’t know if he will make the proposal first.”
The statements of the director, who was recently pardoned after his corruption scandals, are more than eloquent. This is not to say that the course has already been set to announce a new acquisition overnight. Although one shouldn’t be surprised if that were the case considering Samsung recently unveiled an ambitious plan Invest $356,000 million by 2026. It will focus on areas such as chip development, artificial intelligence, robotics and pharmaceuticals, among others.
The semiconductor industry again on alert
When Samsung’s intention to buy ARM finally becomes official, approving the deal won’t be easy. Let’s not forget that not only did NVIDIA encounter countless regulatory hurdles in its attempt, but it did as well resistance from large corporations like Microsoft, Google and Qualcomm.
In fact, Qualcomm’s CEO recently suggested putting together a consortium to buy ARM and keep it neutral. However, the idea could have been canceled after the chip design firm’s recent lawsuit against the Americans.